Appendix A: Finalize the Test Lab

The test lab focuses on one or two core test types: integration and staging. These test types are identical, and because their use is sequential and not parallel, the same processes can be used to build each lab.

On This Page

Step 1: Infrastructure Installation Step 1: Infrastructure Installation
Step 2: Create Shares Step 2: Create Shares
Step 3: Install Virtual Server 2005 R2 Step 3: Install Virtual Server 2005 R2
Step 4: Create the VMs Step 4: Create the VMs
Step 5: Active Directory Setup Step 5: Active Directory Setup
Step 6: Organize the Workspace for the Various Teams Step 6: Organize the Workspace for the Various Teams
Step 7: Bug Reporting Tool Step 7: Bug Reporting Tool
Step 8: Lab Schedule Step 8: Lab Schedule
Step 9: Lab Documentation System Step 9: Lab Documentation System
Step 10: Lab Testing Step 10: Lab Testing

Step 1: Infrastructure Installation

The Infrastructure Remediation feature team is responsible for installing the switches, physical machines, and base operating system required for the lab.

Step 2: Create Shares

Shares are required for the lab. These shares must be stored on the host servers. The host server must reside in a workgroup.

Required shares include:

  • A share for all software source installations.

  • A share for VM storage.

  • A share for operating system images (for deployment).

  • A share for packaged software.

  • A share for clean computer image storage.

  • Other shares as deemed necessary.

Because multiple teams are sharing the host servers, pay particular attention to the permissions applied to these shares. Make sure everyone has access to the shares through share permissions and control discrete access through NTFS file system permissions. In general, only key team members require write access to these folders.

Step 3: Install Virtual Server 2005 R2

Install Microsoft Internet Information Services (IIS) on host servers; then, install the latest version of Virtual Server on the hosting server to run VMs. Configure Virtual Server to use secure connections only to protect all passwords. For more information, see Installing Virtual Server at In addition, see the Microsoft TechNet article, “Using Virtual Server 2005 in Desktop Deployment,” at

Note   When using BDD 2007 in a virtual environment, consider installing Virtual Server on computers using processors that have hardware virtualization features. Doing so improves VM performance.

Step 4: Create the VMs

Create servers to provide simulated production services using Virtual Server 2005. Required services include:

  • Active Directory

  • DHCP

  • DNS

  • WINS

  • Windows DS

  • File and print services

  • IIS

  • Windows SharePoint Services

  • Optionally, SMS and MOM

Depending on the scope of the implementation, these services can reside on a single computer or on several computers. Creating the test environment on multiple VMs provides a better representation of production environments and helps identify potentially hidden issues.

Refer to Windows Server System Reference Architecture at for more information. In addition, use the Microsoft Virtual Server 2005 Migration Toolkit at to capture existing computers and transform them into virtual equivalents.

Step 5: Active Directory Setup

Populate the lab Active Directory server with accounts and possibly GPOs. This server must mimic the production Active Directory server as closely as possible. Requirements include:

  • Privileged accounts for technicians working in the various teams.

  • Low-privilege accounts for testing purposes.

  • Normal accounts for all team members.

  • Possibly GPOs for base settings in the lab.

Step 6: Organize the Workspace for the Various Teams

Each feature team requires its own workspace in the lab. Teams can work virtually, but putting each team in a shared workspace encourages better communication among teams during the project. If shared space is not available, teams must be more virtual, and team leaders can hold team meetings more regularly. Whether virtual or physical, the workspace must provide each team with access to several devices during the course of the project, including:

  • VMs.

  • Physical machines (mostly desktop and portable computers that are representative of the production environment).

  • A Keyboard Video Mouse (KVM) switch for accessing various computers.

  • Shared folders for storing the information that the team generates.

  • A Windows SharePoint Services team site for sharing information about the team’s portion of the project.

  • Physical workspace within the lab.

Step 7: Bug Reporting Tool

Install and configure a bug reporting tool. Doing so may be as simple as a team site within Windows SharePoint Services. For example, the IT Developer Windows SharePoint Services Applications Template includes an issue-tracking page and can be found under Windows SharePoint Services Applications Template: IT Developer at

Step 8: Lab Schedule

Prepare and post the lab schedule. The best place for this posting may be on the lab home page within a Windows SharePoint Services team site. Include the test schedule on this page to make it available to other teams.

Step 9: Lab Documentation System

Prepare the documentation system for the lab, including document templates and data sheets for each prepared product. Document every aspect of the lab architecture—specifically, the possible differences between the lab and the production environment—and justify each difference. This documentation is useful for issues encountered during deployment. A good tool for this task is Microsoft Office Visio® 2003, because it includes network templates that can assist in this documentation process. Visio information is available at

Step 10: Lab Testing

After lab setup is complete, the Test feature team must run the lab through a battery of tests to ensure that it does indeed reproduce the production network and to verify that it will support testing of all the solution’s components, including any operating system images and software packages. This test must be treated like any other test, and results must be logged in the official documentation system.


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