A Real Life Story from a New Customer

Recently we had an email from a new customer that had just decided to purchase SpiraTeam. Even though they were an existing Microsoft Team Foundation Server (TFS) user, they had decided it would be much easier to just use SpiraTeam. We were intrigued by this story and the following account is what they passed on to us (the names have been removed to protect the innocent!)

Trying to Get Microsoft Test Manager Up and Running

The client was initially unable to obtain a key for the trial (due to usability/navigation issues). At the end, the client managed to get a key to progress the installation of the software, which was completed.

The client of the application was unsure whether the product was either ‘Testing Centre’ or ‘Test Lab’. Apparently, the product is ‘Visual Studio Test Professional’ and the ‘Microsoft Test Manager’ is the application used to interact with TFS. MS Visual Studio Test Professional installs MS Test Manager and Visual Studio Team Explorer. The installation required a machine reboot.

From the front end, the client was unable to determine how to access applications Configuration Manager, from where the ‘Test’ parameters can be configured, including the addition of custom fields. The client consulted with an in-house subject matter expert who uses the defect module of the application. This user investigated the matter and was unable to help.

Using Google, the client tried to find some help online, the search results for: ‘how to configure visual studio test professional’, did not return specific information.

Also, other search strings didn’t return useful results.

Importing Existing Test Data

Similarly, the client was not sure how/if data can be exported from VS Test Pro To Excel, as well as the setup of automated notifications.

A Google search indicated that there are free tools that can be used to export test cases to excel for the purpose of getting testers to run the test cases in Excel then synch the results in VS Test Pro. However, there is no direct answer on how to export basic Excel spreadsheets from VS Test Pro. Also, there is no straight forward information available on how to setup notifications for Test Pro.

From brief exploratory testing of the VS Test Pro, although the VS is well established and strong on the development side, its ‘manual testing’ add-on did not yet mature to the same level, and/or just inflexible and not very intuitive, without readily available support material.

A Decision Had to be Made

After all this work, the client had two options:

  1. Log a formal Trial with Microsoft through their vendor, and request all specific information in a clear and unambiguous manner to confirm exactly what VS/Test Pro offers and how; or
  2. Use SpiraTeam from Inflectra, a powerful ALM and Test Management tool, which will require the much less effort to configure and can be setup in a timely manner.

The client decided on Option 2 and used SpiraTeam.

vsts tfs mtm microsoft

About Inflectra

Our mission to helping our customers - large corporations, small businesses, professional services firms, government agencies and individual developers – with the means to effectively and affordably manage their software development and testing lifecycles, so as to decrease the time to market and increase return on investment.

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