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.

  • 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 […]

  • Azure App Service Security with Microsoft Accounts, WebAPIs, and client apps (UWP)

    TL;DR: Azure App Services simplifies your life by taking care of security for you.  This works great when your app is a web browser app but if you need to access it from a client API app (for example, a Universal Windows Platform app), life can get frustrating and confusing in an instant.  In this […]

  • Real World Scrum with TFS Slides from VSLive Orlando 2016

    As promised, here are the slides from my Real World Scrum with Team Foundation Server 2015 talk at VSLive Orlando 2016. Real World Scrum with Team Foundation Server 2015 & Visual Studio Team Services You’ve got Team Foundation Server 2015 and you’re looking to do Scrum.  Ok.  Great.  Now what does that mean?  What does […]

  • Feature Flags Slides & Code from VSLive Orlando 2016

    As promised, here are my slides and code from my feature flags session at VSLive Orlando 2016. Get Good at DevOps: Feature Flag Deployments with ASP.NET, WebAPI, & JavaScript Want to get good at DevOps but deployments are getting you down?  Is the code integration process just plain driving you crazy?  Well, maybe it’s time […]

  • Team Foundation Server 2017 Installation Guide

    Well, you may have heard that Team Foundation Server 2017 (TFS2017) was released today. If you’re interested in installing it, here’s my TFS2017 install guide.  It’s ~80 pages of step-by-step instructions with screenshot on how to set up Windows Server 2016, SQL Server 2016, and Team Foundation Server 2017. Here’s that link again. Enjoy! -Ben […]

  • Using TFS Build to Deploy Entity Framework Database Migrations with Migrate.exe

    In the discussion thread for my DevOps Skills class at Pluralsight, I got a question about how to deploy database changes in a build using Entity Framework Migrations (aka. EF Code First Migrations).  It’s actually pretty easy and it all comes down to a tool that comes with Entity Framework called migrate.exe.  When you deploy your […]

  • One TFS Build, Multiple Git Repositories with Submodules

    In the discussion thread for my DevOps Skills class at Pluralsight, I got a question about how to do TFS Builds and TFS Release Management with code that spans multiple Git repositories.  For good reasons, his team has separated their code into multiple repos.  But when they go to create a build in TFS, the […]