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How to manage lots of code

Here at the Informatics Centre we love our clients and the projects we work on with them, but to keep track of all we have happening at any one time in a project we need a few special pieces of software. These are used to track and assign developer tasks, manage the source of the project between developers, and report bugs to be fixed.

Microsoft may have the best answer that we have found so far, Team Foundation Service. This is Team Foundation Server as most developers know it but, in the cloud (not the fluffy white ones!). It allows us as a team to seamlessly manage all of the above information and share it in one single place! It integrates directly with Visual Studio displaying tasks, bugs and any other information a developer could ask for relating to a project.

Since modern projects are increasingly complex and evolve quickly, no matter how hard developers try, mistakes happen and sometimes things don't work as they should. Microsoft's service will run project tests to ensure that all the main functionality works as expected after every change a developer makes, this lets us spot and correct any errors as quickly as possible.

When a project is complete it also allows for direct deployment to Windows Azure (Microsoft's cloud hosting product), ensuring that the latest stable version of a system is running and accessible for everyone to use.

All of this functionality in one integrated system allows everyone on the team to know exactly where a project is, find and correct errors quickly, and ensure that the projects we deploy are working as expected.

We will be using this service on our projects in the near future. Stay tuned for more info.

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