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Getting an application operational depends on making sure that it can run after the developer has left the room. In the enterprise we have teams of people of focus on that and will go to great lengths to make sure the team that runs the application that was built is solid and predictable. One of the challenges with the cloud is getting an operations team that has been trained to be cloud experts.

To alleviate that problem, Azure supports the dashboard you see in http://portal.azure.com as a shareable resource just like any other service you provision. You can create and customize dashboards by using the portal and pinning tiles that are relevant to your application. When you publish the dashboard you can share it with other teams that have access to Azure, including the operations team.

That is why I created a starter dashboard ARM template you can use to make your deployments more operational. It includes a couple tiles, including a resource group tile and a markdown tile with some instructions on how to customize and share the dashboard with others on your team.

Click the link below to provision it from the Azure portal. I’ve got a pull request to add it to the azure starter template library but until then you can get it from a storage account I’ve uploaded it to. Click the link below to deploy a starter dashboard to your Azure subscription for resource group.

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A picture is worth a thousand words and in the same way deploying a complex infrastructure with a thousand words takes a special skill to be able to do that. Wouldn’t it be great if we could deploy the picture instead? In the time I’ve been working with and evangelizing Azure since before it was publicly released, I’ve seen a lot of changes and ten years is a long time in the cloud! In 2014 Microsoft introduced the Azure Resource Manager (ARM) which provides a powerful way to orchestrate the creation of services in the cloud. They also introduced ARM templates, which is like a markup language that provides a picture instead of code. I’m working on a series of courses with LinkedIn Learning that share the journey of going to the cloud for the modern enterprise. We explore the path and the tools for going from being just cloud aware (it runs in the cloud) to being optimized, invested and finally ready for the enterprise.

This is a work in progress, but links to the first few courses are below. I’ll update the list as more are ready!

I had a question today about how the recorder works for with the Xamarin Tools in Visual Studio 2017. I’ve had mixed success with getting it to work, so I thought I’d document the steps that make it work. The trick is you need to be running a version of the APK that is not using the shared runtime (a default when you do a debug build). For that reason I use the release build to record the test. Here’s the basic flow:

1. Create new cross platform project with the blank template
2. Build & run it on my device (first in debug but then again in release)
3. add the UI Test project to the solution
4. In the Android project show all files and navigate to the bin/release folder and copy the path
5. In the Test.cs file at the top of the class near the [TestFixture(Platform.Android)] line click on record new test and then select the APK - make sure to put in the path of the signed release version of the apk
6. Wait until you notice the app running on the device
7. When you tap the screen, swipe left or right you'll see the [Test] method NewTest() gets new code added to it.

        [Test]
        public void NewTest()
        {
            app.SwipeLeftToRight();
            app.Tap(x => x.Class("PageRenderer"));
            app.SwipeLeftToRight();
            app.SwipeLeftToRight();
            app.ScrollDown();
            app.ScrollUp();
            app.SwipeLeftToRight();
            app.SwipeRightToLeft();
            app.Screenshot("Swiped left");
        }

 

As promised last week I updated the slides with the session that the content was drawn from. Here is the consolidated list of sessions with deeper dives into the topics from Build:

  • B8020 - Cognitive Services & Computer Vision Made Easy
  • B8049 - Enable intelligence with Azure IoT Edge
  • B8096 - Windows Template Studio
  • B8100 - What's New and Coming in Windows UI Platform
  • B8001 - Three Runtimes One Standard .NET Standard
  • B8048 - Introducing .NET Core 2.0
  • B8027 - Azure Debugging & Snappoints
  • B8039 - Design for Serverless Success
  • B8061 - How to build serverless business applications
  • B8099 - Xamarin Tools
  • B8103 - The Future of Xamarin Development
  • B8072 - Overview of Mobile Center

My GitHub repo for the event - http://github.com/mbenko/rebuild17. Other links from the event include:

Re-BUILD 2017 Roadshow

The “re-BUILD 2017 Roadshow” brings the best of the Build conference to cities across the US. A half day developer focused event in partnership with User Groups and Microsoft Partners will deliver a half day msdn-event style experience. There will be 3  sessions on Build Highlights, Going Serverless with Azure Functions, and Mobile Center, the next generation of HockeyApp. A HackFest over lunch will cover ad-hoc topics by community leaders and MVP’s to share their favorite thing from Build.

The schedule typically includes:

  • Build 2017 Productivity Features you never knew you had
  • Going Serverless with Azure Functions
  • Exploring Mobile Center
  • Pizza and Hackfest

The scheduled cities are listed below with more coming soon!

We'll see you on the road with re-BUILD 2017 Roadshow!

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Starting Friday March 24 I’m working with Microsoft and the community of MVP’s to resurrect a type of event format we used to run for MSDN, the half day – Explore the Possible – see it in action – event. I’d love to invite you to join me on the tour, stop by and say hi. We will explore the move towards productivity and effectiveness of development and deployment tools and technologies.

Since Visual Studio launched 20 years ago it has evolved to become a favorite IDE of the casual to professional developer. With the launch of Visual Studio 2017 Microsoft has stepped up their game with improvements to make it easier to work with Cloud, Mobile and Web, as well as a number of productivity improvements. Join us as we explore the possible with the latest tools and technologies with Visual Studio, Xamarin and the Mobile Center, and DevOps with Team Services. The day starts at 8:30 and ends with a hackfest/install pizza party.

  • 8:30 – Hello Visual Studio
  • 9:45 – Exploring Mobile Stack
  • 11:00 – DevOps, .NET Core, Docker and more
  • 12:00 – Pizza & Hackfest

The list of cities and dates include:

Hope to see you there!

-mike

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Watching the live stream of the Visual Studio 2017 launch and 20 year anniversary party…thought I’d capture some of the notes of what’s going on and share the fun.

Visual Studio 2017 release

Developer Productivity - Kasey Uhlenhuth

  • Live Unit Tests
  • Exception helper
  • Find all references
  • New intellitrace tray of options
  • Ctrl+T for goto All
  • Code suggestions
  • Code Config file - map code styles and suggestions for environment
  • Support for tuples on methods
  • Improved refactoring
  • Indent guide visibility to method code is in even if not visible

.NET Core - Beth Massi

  • .net Tools for Core 1.0 in production
  • Migrate/Upgrade to new tools easy
  • Simplified csproj format which is human readable
  • References grouped by type…i.e. nuget refs, project refs, etc.
  • Application Insights
    • New add-in experience
    • Search and graph analytics in VS

Containers Docker - Scott Hanselman

  • Add docker support in VS right click on project
  • Run in docker if selected startup project
  • Debug, edit and volume mapping realtime from vs to docker
  • Publish to Linux docker or windows
  • Automatically references other docker containers dependent on
  • Debug across containers
  • Check out Ref application http://aka.ms/MicroservicesArchitecture

Xamarin : James & Miguel

  • Tizen new OS from Samsung for IoT devices…built on Xamarin Forms
  • Visual Studio for Mac Preview 4
  • New App templates
    • Mobile App added with best practices if checkbox Azure
    • Code for clients
  • Forms Previewer
    • Works if you have JDK 1.8+ on x64 installed (settings?)
  • Improved intellisense
  • Native animations in XAML
  • Forms inspector, when connected tp android emulator
    • Layers
    • Live edit of XAML

VS Mobile Center - Keith

  • http://mobile.azure.com
  • Xamarin Test Cloud
  • Add app…pick type
  • Add nuget & register app
  • Distribute sets up a team of testers/user community for builds
  • Build service
    • Pick sln
    • Provisioning profile
    • Certificate for signed builds
    • Trigger
  • Test service …
    • run automated UI tests
    • See devices tested on
  • Crash reporting
    • Usage & crash info
    • Stack dumps grouped by count
  • Analytics
    • Custom events

DevOps - Brian Harry & Donovan Brown

  • Continuous delivery
  • "Shift Right" = delivery improvements, production is part of the plan
  • TFS 2017.1 for on Premise installs
  • http://aka.ms/tfsimportdata
  • Donovan demo - any project, any platform
    • Create project
    • Import Git repo
    • View code
    • Setup build from templates or by scratch
      • Sources - where is repo? In TS or external?
      • Test settings
      • Code Coverage
      • Build agents - windows or linux
      • Search for build task
      • Marketplace for build tasks
      • Create your own extension
      • Variables
      • Create work items on failure
      • Track history/changes to build definitions
    • Release definitions
      • Infrastructure as code
      • Approvers
    • Dashboards
  • Data Migration - Partner with Red Gate
    • In VS RedGate ReadyRoll has tools by default
    • SQL Obj explorer, make changes and save
    • Tell ReadyRoll to refresh with changes, generate migration scripts
      • Add update statements for populating default values on existing data after modification
    • Add database scripts and changes that will happen on the database
    • Add the ReadyRoll task to deploy the database task
  • RedGate included in VS 2017 Enterprise
  • Pluralsight 1yr
  • DevOps Enterprise Accelerator offer

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