‘Eye Of The Tiger’–Using Metaphors For Retrospectives

I have been at the Scrum Gathering Berlin over the last few days and I had a really good time. Not just is it a great place to learn and float new ideas, but it’s also an opportunity to catch up with...


26 / 9 / 2014 by Helen Meek

Forecasting Your Oranges

I’ve been struggling for a metaphor to help explain the difference between statistical forecasting and estimation, and this one came to me, so lets give it a whirl. Let me express the scenario ...


25 / 9 / 2014 by Dan Brown

The Numbers Game

Numbers Game Whenever I’m in a meeting talking about metrics, someone always brings up Velocity. If you’re familiar with Scrum you’ll know that in this context, velocity means the number of story...


22 / 9 / 2014 by Dan Brown

Easily change a TFS Team Project to use a custom team field with PowerShell

One of the Team Foundation Server Process Template customisations I do frequently is changing a project to make use of a custom team field rather than the default Area Path to scope Work Items to tea...


12 / 9 / 2014 by Richard Erwin

Compare TFS build definitions

I was working with some custom build definitions on a training course last week and one of the delegates had a failing build.  After a quick visual inspection I couldn’t spot what was wrong and ...


11 / 9 / 2014 by Richard Erwin

Licensing non-development users of Team Foundation Server

Most Team Foundation Server (TFS) administrators know how to license developers.  MSDN licenses are the most common, meaning that all users already have a Client Access License for Team Foundati...


23 / 6 / 2014 by Richard Erwin

Zen and the start of re-framing 'the process'

A client recently told me of some members of a development team saying how they couldn’t see the value of adopting Agile. It’s not uncommon to hear similar sentiments in many teams. This got me thi...


16 / 6 / 2014 by Bazil Arden

Team Foundation Server Reporting

I’ve been answering a lot of questions on Team Foundation Server reporting over the last couple of weeks so I thought I’d put some of that information in a blog post. Team Foundation Server is an a...


29 / 5 / 2014 by Richard Erwin

Report Builder - The permissions granted to user 'TFS2013\user' are insufficient for performing this operation

I was doing a little custom reporting using Report Builder today and when I came to preview my report I received an error message. The permissions granted to user 'TFS2013\user' are insufficient...


16 / 5 / 2014 by Richard Erwin

Where is WorkItemChangedEvent in TFS 2013 Update 2?

This is more for my own reference. If you use iSubscriber in your applications you may have noticed they’ve stopped working in Update 2 of TFS 2013 because they can’t find WorkItemChangedEvent. Thi...


8 / 5 / 2014 by Rory Street

Top of the Mountain to ya!

Been on extended Easter holiday over the last week and being back at work was a shock to the system. I had an awesome week off though, and got to do lots of little jobs at home that needed doing (4 h...


25 / 4 / 2014 by Helen Meek

Top Gun!

First blog of the New Year! I had a good Christmas and New Year. Who wouldn’t with three weeks off work and a trip the New York included within that New York was awesome!! My friend Sarah and I ...


6 / 2 / 2014 by Helen Meek

Scrum and Kanban

Scrum and Kanban, What’s the difference? My intention was a short blog, but it quickly grew into a long one to explain what I meant. With that in mind, the conclusion is at the top, please read that...


14 / 1 / 2014 by Dan Brown

What is your Agile resolution?

Last night at the Agile Coaching Exchange we had the fabulous Karl Scotland introducing working models that can be used by organisation as they make their journey in the agile world. The reception by...


19 / 12 / 2013 by Helen Meek

Merry Christmas Everyone - My Personal Retrospective.

The end of 2013 will shortly be upon us and I find myself having my usual mother of all personal retrospectives. There has been some real ups and downs this year, but I guess that is just life and so...


18 / 12 / 2013 by Helen Meek

Flowing like ketchup

How a humble bottle of tomato ketchup can teach us about flow, pull and push. Knowledge work tends to be Complex Adaptive work. That means as you try to solve a problem, the solution leads to a cha...


5 / 12 / 2013 by Dan Brown

The Art of Possibility

It’s been a little while since I have written a blog. I guess I have been off the radar for a bit, but I am back now. Since we last spoke I have been to the Scrum Gathering Paris and had an awesome t...


29 / 10 / 2013 by Helen Meek

Private Builds ignoring Check-in Policies

I was delivering a training course on TFS 2012 this week and one of the delegates came across some unexpected behaviour that I hadn’t noticed before. We had added the Work Items Check-in Policy to ...


18 / 10 / 2013 by Richard Erwin

Panic Zone

Had another glorious day out with my nephew last week. This time I took him to Blakeney for a picnic, more crabbing and then we went out on Beans Boats to see the seals at the point. I love animals a...


27 / 8 / 2013 by Helen Meek

#NoEstimates, Sizing and Dry Stone walls

I recently blogged here on Is Estimation Waste and I would like to come back to it. There is a movement in Lean and Agile towards #NoEstimates which has a lot of value, but I still believe that we ar...


16 / 8 / 2013 by Dan Brown

Retrospectives

As a child my parents used to take me and my brother to Wells next the sea for holidays. I have to say it is my favourite beach and it brings back many fond child hood memories for me. Faced with w...


11 / 8 / 2013 by Helen Meek

Non Violent Communication

It is common knowledge of my dislike of snow, but what’s worse is this heat! Whilst I love going on holiday and basking in the sun,  It is normally accompanied by a pina colada and a dip every 1...


29 / 7 / 2013 by Helen Meek

The Goal

I have always had good banter with my girly friends that I am waiting for the right millionaire to come along and build me an enormous shoe cupboard. Alas, after some time I have relented in my waiti...


17 / 7 / 2013 by Helen Meek

Brains are Machines: Blog 4: Rewiring Brains

Rewiring Brains Personal development is often viewed as ‘fluffy’, with little relationship to the bottom-line, not something a CIO would hang a vision and strategy on. This blog series demonstrates ...


12 / 7 / 2013 by Steve Garnett

Is LeanKit talking to TFS a good idea?

LeanKit if you haven’t heard of it is a popular Kanban board available as a service over the Internet. I’ve used it myself and seen it used on several client sites in the past. However the one questi...


9 / 7 / 2013 by Rory Street

What’s new in the Microsoft Visual Studio Scrum 3.0 Preview Process Template and why should I upgrade to Team Foundation Server 2013 Preview?

Recently I’ve been working with a customer on migrating their existing Team Project to a new Process Template on Team Foundation Server 2012.  We’ve decided to go with the TFS Integration Too...


2 / 7 / 2013 by Richard Erwin

Brains are Machines Series: Blog 3: Perpetuating Dross? An Industry Dilemma

Personal development and organisational structures are often viewed as the ‘fluffy’ stuff, with little relationship to bottom-line. This Blog series will attempt to demonstrate that the reverse is tr...


24 / 6 / 2013 by Steve Garnett

TFS Events Subscriptions Viewer (and editor)

A while ago I had to do a bit of work with the TFS Subscription service. The annoying problem was I needed to find a particular subscription and the tools that came out of the box weren't very helpfu...


13 / 6 / 2013 by Rory Street

A big week for Visual Studio

Microsoft announced that there will be a new Visual Studio and Team Foundation Server this year along with some other cool updates.  Some links in case you missed them: Brian Harry: Visual Stu...


12 / 6 / 2013 by Richard Erwin

Why we Limit WIP

When I go into organisations adopting Kanban or advanced Agle, they often know that they should be limiting WIP (Work in Progress) or even are limiting WIP without really understanding why. I'm hopin...


7 / 6 / 2013 by Dan Brown

Interesting Agile Opportunity…

We’ve been working with a small, ambitious, energetic financial services technology company. They’re a ‘green-field’ agile site, with executive sponsorship for agile adoption and a large portfolio of...


4 / 6 / 2013 by Steve Garnett

Brains are Machines Series: Blog 2: Innovation, Automation & Investment

Original Post: http://businessvalueexchange.com/brains-are-machines-series-blog-2-innovation-automation-investment/ Personal development is often viewed as ‘fluffy’, with little relationship to the...


29 / 5 / 2013 by Steve Garnett

Is Estimation Waste?

My answer would be "Yes, but…" I've always said: "Estimation is valuable, estimates are waste" So if you can get the value that you would get from estimation in another way that provides a ...


20 / 5 / 2013 by Dan Brown

Brains are Machines Series: Blog 1: Shifting Sands

Original post: http://businessvalueexchange.com/brains-are-machines-series-blog-1-shifting-sands/ The industrial revolution saw the landscape of Britain transformed from rural & agricultural to ur...


17 / 5 / 2013 by Steve Garnett

HP Business Value Exchange–Thought Leadership & Featured Contributions

  I’ve been invited to become a CIO Thought Leader and Featured Contributor on a new IDG produced site in collaboration with HP Enterprise Services. The site is called The Business Value Excha...


10 / 5 / 2013 by Steve Garnett

Agile, documentation and visual aids for the developer

My reason for looking into this particular subject was being on a client site and sitting with a BA who was feeling a bit down hearted. She couldn’t figure out how she could properly communicate to t...


2 / 5 / 2013 by Rory Street

Scrum with Team Foundation Server 2012–Do it right!

Are you using TFS 2012?  Are you using or adopting Scrum? Then get the most out of your tools and your process by attending a 2-day Certified ScrumMaster course with a free one day Scrum w...


1 / 5 / 2013 by Richard Erwin

21st Century Corporate Structure

The Cellular Business Model Business in the 21st century is fast-paced, our tools are the internet, the knowledge worker, internationalisation, globalisation, the PC, the cloud, digital communicatio...


1 / 5 / 2013 by Steve Garnett

No to Evangelism, yes to Education

I've often heard Agilists referred to as Evangelists, and it's always rankled with me. Lately I've been wondering why that is, and this is what I came up with. It's hard to talk about Evangelism w...


29 / 4 / 2013 by Dan Brown

The playback engine could not find the selenium binaries

I was putting together a demo of cross browser Coded UI testing with Visual Studio 2012 and ran into a minor problem.  Hopefully this post will save you some time. I grabbed the very helpful V...


25 / 4 / 2013 by Richard Erwin

Behind the scenes of Microsoft Tech.Days 2013

Yesterday I presented at Microsoft Tech.Days Online 2013.  It was a slightly odd experience presenting in an almost empty auditorium to some cameras and a bunch of AV guys. *Picture shamele...


25 / 4 / 2013 by Richard Erwin

PSAKE Incubator

A while a go I wrote an article on how I managed to get the test results from a build that was using PSAKE to surface in TFS’s summary view. I provided one solution to this problem in that article th...


23 / 4 / 2013 by Rory Street

Agile:MK Journal “Writing Good Requirements”

The Agile:MK Journal, Issue 04 March edition is available from www.agilemk.com. This edition is a write-up of the March User Group session was a discussion about Writing Good Requirements. ...


17 / 4 / 2013 by Steve Garnett

Cross Functional Teams, Not People

A common thing I hear in new agile adoptions is the concept of making the team Cross Functional. That is, the team should have all of the skills necessary to complete the work being undertaken. Ho...


10 / 4 / 2013 by Dan Brown

Upgrading to Visual Studio 2012 - Error MSB4018: The "SqlBuildTask" task failed unexpectedly

Working on a customer project which is an upgrade of Visual Studio 2008 and SQL Server 2005 projects up to the latest Visual Studio bits and pieces. Upgrade of most solutions went fine, except for ...


2 / 4 / 2013 by Stuart Preston

TeamFoundationApplication and TeamFoundationApplicationCore

If like me you’ve written code that makes use of Microsoft.TeamFoundation.Framework.Server you may also have made use of Microsoft.TeamFoundation.Framework.Server.TeamFoundationApplication. This is t...


26 / 3 / 2013 by Rory Street

We have a choice of viewpoints

I adore working with teams and seeing them pull together, be creative and succeed against the challenges they face. However, quite often the challenges are human-centric rather than what they’re work...


24 / 3 / 2013 by Sophie Manton

A Decade in Agile: 3. How Adopting Agile Increases Business Benefits

This blog is part of the Blog Series: A Decade in Agile and was first published in February 2005. My updated reflections are in blue italics. I believe that adopting a scrum approach to project del...


19 / 3 / 2013 by Steve Garnett

Branches : Less is probably more; but efficiency definitely is.

Technorati Tags: TFS Branches,Branches,Peter Haynes Technorati Tags: ALM Technorati Tags: TFS2012   I don’t want to get into the whys and wherefores just yet; I’d like to start with the ass...


12 / 3 / 2013 by Peter Haynes

Agile:MK Journal Issue 3–February 2013 Available

www.agilemk.com Latest issues of Agile:MK Journal available. Next Meeting: Tuesday 26th March, 6pm-8pm, Jurys Inn Hotel, Midsummer Boulevard, Milton Keynes ...


11 / 3 / 2013 by Steve Garnett

Reports–Multiple collections one warehouse; use WorkItemBK GUID for joins.

  Introduction In many organisations a TFS installation will comprise of more than one project collection. The data from all project collections is stored in the same TFS warehouse. This i...


11 / 3 / 2013 by Peter Haynes

Reports – How to create a Day by Day based SQL Report

  Introduction This is a description of how to put together a report that tracks change to some data over time. This example will be a basic Product Backlog report. For this work we will...


8 / 3 / 2013 by Peter Haynes

Is it all a big sprint?

If you know me, you'll know I'm a fan of both Scrum and Kanban, and get irritated by those who see them as opposing forces. So this post is definitely not me having a pop at scrum. However I do have ...


27 / 2 / 2013 by Dan Brown

TFSJobAgent Error–An item with the same key has already been added

I’ve posted this more as a reminder to myself next time I create TFSJobAgent plugins. If you ever encounter the error below when adding a new TFSJobAgent plugin: TF53010: The following error ...


27 / 2 / 2013 by Rory Street

New Tools for TFS Administrators in TFS 2012

There are some really useful new tools for administrators in TFS 2012, I’ve only just seen this now on Grant Holliday's blog but you can now do things such as look at the TFS Activity Log and one of ...


25 / 2 / 2013 by Rory Street

Portfolio prioritising–a simple approach that works

Portfolio-level prioritising is fraught with problems… ambitious senior stakeholders, promoting their agenda, rarely meeting together to see how their projects compare to others resulting in a portfo...


8 / 2 / 2013 by Bazil Arden

TFS will host Git Repositories

If you haven’t see in it already, check it out here. TFS will host Git Repositories (100% compatible), see Brian Harry’s blog for more details and links to tutorials. http://blogs.msdn.com/b/bharry...


1 / 2 / 2013 by Rory Street

Programmatically getting a list of PBIs from a merge between two branches in TFS

TFS has some pretty powerful functionality out of the box one of them is the merge functionality. However I’ve always felt it missed what I thought was a rather nice feature to have, and that is the ...


29 / 1 / 2013 by Rory Street

Visualising Agile: Focus generates money and learning…

The simplest illustration of the benefits of focus must be this one – clearly illustrating that if we focus on _and finish_ one feature (or project) at a time then all 3 features are delivered quicke...


23 / 11 / 2012 by Bazil Arden

Multiple Teams with Microsoft Team Foundation Server 2012 & Visual Studio Scrum V2.x (Updated 14/5/2013)

  Introducing Team Foundation Server 2012 and Scrum V2.x The combination of Microsoft’s latest Scrum process template and Team Foundation Server 2012 brings a host of new features and much im...


19 / 11 / 2012 by Colin Bird

Visualising Agile: a Risk Reduction Recipe for the Contractually Minded

Many turn to contracts as a way to reduce risk. Agile has several alternative, and proven, was to reduce risk. This blog outlines shows how to get from a contract to an ordered list of clear requirem...


9 / 11 / 2012 by Bazil Arden

Visualising Agile: Balancing the pipeline

The delivery pipeline is an idea which resonates with our clients. The simplicity of the metaphor and the truths that it reveals make it a compelling message to share with others in the organisation....


1 / 11 / 2012 by Bazil Arden

MTM setting Internet Proxy stopping Internet connection

At a current client, there have been incidents where the running of an MTM Test manually changes the IE proxy settings, which means no more Google juice and no email – as they are running Office 365....


18 / 7 / 2012 by Simon Reindl

TFS #loc.MinimumNetFXVersion and Windows 2012 0x0000005D

A tale of two error in the path to RC install. I wanted to install the RC of TFS2012 to do some upgrade proving. To  keep up to date the target is Windows Server 2012, running SQL 2012, and TF...


3 / 7 / 2012 by Simon Reindl

Release Planning in Scrum

Overview There is a common misconception that there is no planning in Scrum. While there is nothing in the latest Scrum Guide (http://www.scrum.org/scrumguides/) specifying Release Planning, the omi...


13 / 6 / 2012 by Simon Reindl

Organisational WIP: too many projects hurt throughput

The performance of software delivery teams is so often undermined by team members being shared with other teams or regularly borrowed for operational support and other emergencies. We know that sma...


31 / 5 / 2012 by Colin Bird