Some of the Best Visual Studio Blogs to Follow: Part 1

Visual Studio is such a powerhouse application development platform, that there's NO shortage of expert advice available in the blogosphere these days.

To help you navigate the resource waters, we dove head-first into this information ocean to find the best Visual Studio blogs for advice and guidance. Here’s part 1 of our findings, focused on ALM, TFS and VSTS.

A Developer’s Life: Jeff Bramwell

Jeff Bramwell, a Microsoft Visual Studio ALM MVP since 2008, penned a recent blog post on discovering Visual Studio Team Services APIs. “Building on our current theme of Visual Studio Team Services (VSTS) API calls, let’s take a look at discovering what APIs are available. The likely starting point for figuring out VSTS APIs is the REST API Reference for VS Team Services and TFS. Here you can view the various information and examples for the APIs currently exposed by VSTS (and TFS). The APIs are broken out into major categories with each category including links to the various resources provided by their respective APIs.”

He continues, “If you’re like me, however, you might enjoy viewing the available APIs just a little bit closer to the ‘metal.’ This is relatively simple with VSTS because Microsoft has implemented the HTTP OPTIONS method. While you wouldn’t necessarily want to use the OPTIONS method to programmatically build and call API URLs on-the-fly (you can read more about why you might not want to do this here) that doesn’t mean it isn’t a great mechanism for spelunking around a set of APIs to see what’s offered.”

Click here to check out this excellent blog.

Please Release Me: Graham Smith

Continuous delivery is a hot topic with Visual Studio application developers these days. If you want to read more about Continuous Delivery with TFS / VSTS, and Configuring a Sample Application for Git in Visual Studio 2015, then you’ll want to check out Graham Smith’s blog. He’ll take you through the process of configuring a sample application to work with Git in Visual Studio 2015. (It almost sounds as easy as filling in a form!)

“In order to start working with Git in Visual Studio there are some essential and non-essential settings to configure," Smith advises. "From the Team Explorer – Home page choose Settings > Git > Global Settings. Visual Studio will have filled in as many settings as possible. Complete the form as you see fit. The one change I make is to trim Repos from the Default Repository Location (to try and reduce max filepath issues) and then from Windows Explorer create the Source folder with child folders named GitHub, TFS and VSTS. This way I can keep repositories from the different Git hosts separate and avoid name clashes if I have a repository named the same in different hosts.”

See the rest of Graham Smith’s blog posts by visiting

Regularly Expressing on .NET: Jesse Houwing

For a wealth of tips and tricks on TFS and ALM, you don't want to miss Jesse Houwing’s blog posts.

He recently compiled several of his older blogs posts on connecting to TFS from any version of Visual Studio into one central location. He mentions that there are three things to consider when connecting to TFS from an older version of Visual Studio:

  • The version of TFS you want to connect to
  • The version of Visual Studio you're connecting from
  • The version of Windows you're running

Stay tuned for more of the best of the best from down in the trenches with Visual Studio.

Have a favorite ALM/TFS/VSTS blog you’d like to share? Comment below!

Posted by Lafe Low on 02/03/2016

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