We help teams get productive, cut waste, and deliver great software.

Scrum Training & Coaching

Want to be more Agile? Looking for an Agile transformation? Need Scrum training or someone to help your Scrum teams improve their game? We can help. We offer three different Scrum courses. We also can embed with your teams to help them develop their Agile & Scrum "muscle memory".

Ever get the feeling that one or more of your teams just isn't "clicking" and kind of needs a therapist? Do you suspect there's a general malaise in your development organization? We can help with that, too.

Team Foundation Server, Visual Studio ALM, & DevOps Consulting

Team Foundation Server (TFS) and Visual Studio ALM (VS ALM) can help your teams communicate more efficiently and be more productive. It can also help you with your ALM and DevOps automation concerns through automated builds, automated Release Management, automated testing, and more. We've been doing this for years and we can help.

Development & QA Best Practices

Software development doesn't have to be painful and software testing doesn't have to be a magical black box. We can help your developers learn and adopt the skills to help them to build high-quality, maintainable code. We can help your QA testers plan and manage their work to help ensure quality in your final product.

We'll help everyone learn to work together so that quality becomes something you think about every day rather than something you think about at the last second.

  • “DevOps with ASP.NET Core, EF Core, & TFS2017”: Slides & Code

    [Updated 3/23/2017 — If you saw this talk at DevBoston or Code Camp Boston, it’s the same slides and code at NYC .NET.] I spoke at the NYC .NET Developers user group last night and gave my new “DevOps with ASP.NET Core, EF Core, & TFS2017” talk. DevOps is all about software delivery.  Create an […]

  • Deploy Entity Framework Core Migrations from a DLL

    [Updated 3/29/2017 — Added a bash version of this script for deploying EF Core Migrations from Linux.] Entity Framework Migrations let you deploy incremental updates to a target database.  With Entity Framework Core (EF Core) this is done from the command line by going to the directory that contains your Entity Framework entity and migration code, […]

  • A Non-Terrible Workaround for the Dreaded EF Core Migration FileLoadException Diagnostics Problem

    In my Entity Framework Core Migrations walkthrough, I showed a workaround for an exception when you add a migration.  If you ran “dotnet ef migrations add” on a netcoreapp1.1 project, you’d get the following exception. System.IO.FileLoadException: Could not load file or assembly ‘System.Diagnostics.DiagnosticSource, Version=4.0.1.0, Culture=neutral, PublicKeyToken=cc7b13ffcd2ddd51’. The located assembly’s manifest definition does not match the […]

  • TFS Build / Release Configuration Utilities: Edit app.config, web.config, appsettings.json, and XML

    When you’re working automated builds and automated releases, you frequently need to edit configuration files like app.config, web.config, and appsettings.json. Well, I wrote a command line utility to do this and I figured I’d share.  I’ve got a version that is an .exe that can be used on a Windows build agent and I’ve got a version that’s written […]

  • “How do I update my TFS2017 build agents?”

    I got a question recently asking how to make sure that your on-premise Team Foundation Server 2017 build agents are up to date.  If you’ve installed a bunch of build agents over time, you’ll notice that when you go to download the bits, that the version number sometimes changes.  They generally stay up to date […]

  • Walkthrough: Install TFS2017 Build Agent on Windows and Ubuntu 16.04 Linux

    I’ve updated my Team Foundation Server 2017 install guide to add new chapters for installing build servers. This new version (v1.1) now has a chapter for installing the TFS2017 build agent on Windows and a chapter for installing the build agent on Ubuntu Linux 16.04. If you’re interested in installing TFS, here’s my TFS2017 install […]

  • Top 3 Scrum People Skills Myths

    As part of the on-going Scrum Myths series at Scrum.org, here are three myths related to people skills.  When I say people skills, I mean topics like emotional intelligence, emotional IQ, and person-to-person interactions. Myth #1: Scrum must be “huggy / feely” Word on the street is that Scrum has to be “huggy / feely”.  […]

  • Slides from Node Boston “Coaching Skills for Scrum Masters” Talk

    Thanks again to Node Boston for having me come speak last night.  As promised, here are my slides for that talk.  Also, since we had so many questions about geo-distributed teams and time zones, here’s a link to a blog post I wrote on Scrum + time zones. Coaching Skills for Scrum Masters & The […]

  • EF Core Migrations without Hard-coding a Connection String using IDbContextFactory

    In my last post, I showed you how to set up an ASP.NET Core and Entity Framework Core solution so that you can use EF Core Migrations for database updates.  That code sample used a hard-coded database connection string in the OnConfiguring() method of my DbContext class…and that stinks.  It’s terrible for deployment and maintenance […]

  • Walkthrough: Entity Framework Core 1.1 with Migrations

    Here’s a walk-through on how to create a new solution that uses an ASP.NET Core project, an MSTest unit test project, and Entity Framework Core 1.1 (EFCore1.1).  I’m not sure if you’ve found this to be the case but I’ve been struggling with the documentation for a few days trying to figure out how to […]

  • Script: Create new ASP.NET Core Project with Class Library & Tests

    Building on my post about how to do some common Solution and Project tasks using the dotnet command, here’s a sample script to create a complete solution that can be used from Visual Studio 2017 or Visual Studio Code. I wanted to be able to create a complete solution and project structure all from the […]

  • Cheat Sheet: Use dotnet.exe to Create New Solutions, Projects, & References

    I’ve been playing with .NET Core a lot lately and I’ve been trying to stick to the command line and Visual Studio Code as much as possible so that I can really learn what’s going on so I can (eventually) do cross-platform devops-y things.  This means that I’m spending a lot of time with dotnet.exe…which […]