Deploy Entity Framework Core Migrations from a DLL

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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, compiling that code (dotnet build), and then calling “dotnet ef database update” to publish those changes […]

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

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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?”

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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 […]

One TFS Build, Multiple Git Repositories with Submodules

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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 […]

Enable Verbose Debug Mode for TFS Build vNext

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Here’s a “hidden in plain sight” quick tip: how to turn on verbose debugging mode for your Team Foundation Server vNext Build. The short answer is that you need to set the ‘system.debug’ variable to true for your build.  You can set this to true for a single instance of the build or you can change […]

Edit a Connection String from a TFS vNext Build

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In my last post, I talked about how to create an ASP.NET Web Application that’s easy to deploy from your Team Foundation Server vNext Build (TFS Build vNext).  Well, part of the pain of deploying an ASP.NET Web Application (ASP.NET MVC or ASP.NET Web Forms) from a build is dealing with database connection strings.  So […]