Azure Web Apps – Continuous Integration & Continuous Delivery


Delivery Manager: We need to implement DevOps as soon as possible for fast & smooth rollout.
Dev. team: We need to have a sophisticated IDE….
Delivery Manager: But you already have that as Visual Studio.
Dev Team: Yes, but we need few other tools tool like Team Foundation Server, Test Professional, Release Manager.
Manager: Yes, those can assumed to be approved.
System Manager: We need time to procure & then install.
Dev Team: We need time to configure, test and then certify it.
Delivery Manager: How much time is required?
System Manager: approx. 2 weeks.
Dev Team: approx. 2-3 weeks after successful installation.
Delivery Manager: I surrender….

The above scenario is now a passe with Microsoft Visual Studio Online (VSO) & Azure Web Apps.

What is Azure Web Apps

Please view: Azure App Services – The SuperHero of Cloud Resources

What is Visual Studio Online (VSO)

Visual Studio Online is the next evolution of TFS and Team Foundation Service, bringing you the fundamentals of ALM in the cloud.With Visual Studio Online, Microsoft now has a platform of services you can take advantage of whether you’re moonlighting on your own personal projects or working on larger systems with your team
Build in the cloud. No servers, no overhead—great.You still have full access to your build drops because they’re also stored in your source repository in Visual Studio Online. Overall, use Visual Studio Online for basics such as continuous integration where you check in your code & it builds it for you.
What all it gives:

• Plan you project for Agile or traditional approach.
• Check-in your code
• Build your code
• Create Test Plan
• Perform Load Test
• Plan your release

Continuous Integration

1.Connect you Visual Studio IDE with VSO: From your Visual Studio IDE login to you Microsoft Account to link your IDE with VSO. Create your project & add it to the VSO source control.

2.Check-in your code: Check-in your code as you perform check-in using traditional TFS approach. You can put your own comments for each check-in.

3.Build your code: The next step is to build the checked in code. VSO allows to create build definition from VS IDE.

Clicking the “New Build Definition” opens the template window. Keep in mind if you are planning for automated Deploy, please use the template: TfvcContinuousDeploymentTemplate.12.xaml. You can select whether you want the build to happen on every check-in or at predefined schedule.

3.Run Unit Test: Whether to execute unit test or not, can be set in the build definition. If the Unit test fails, the build will fail and erroneous code will not be allowed to get deployed.

Continuous Delivery

The successfully built code now need to be deployed. To understand the advantage of deploying in Azure, please view: Azure App Services – The SuperHero of Cloud Resources.

Once the Azure Web App is created, navigate to it as there is a need to link with your Visual Studio Online source control. This will also create a build definition for you, as an alternate to the steps mentioned in CI(above).

Thats it. You are done.

Every new build will automatically get deployed in your Azure Web App and will be available for users, without any manual intervention.


Though this is very handy for some of the deployment, it may not be very useful always as you still need some more control in complete build-deployment process.
You may need elaborate process of deploying in various stages accross multiple instance with automated rollback capabilities and so on.
In such case either the VSO-Azure deployment process need to be more customized or you may need to deploy necessary MS tool sets.

Top 10 Big Data Articles You Must Read Today

1. Big Data: Now A Top Management Issue For 2016

A new study by the Economist Intelligence Unit shows how big data is moving from its infancy to a “data adolescence,” in which companies are increasingly meeting the challenges of a data-driven world.

The report, called “Big Data Evolution,” details the ways in which companies’ attitudes and activities have changed over the past four years with regards to big data — collecting it, storing it, analyzing it, and using it to make business decisions about strategy. Continue reading…

2. 6 Predictions For Big Data Analytics And Cognitive Computing In 2016

Big data analytics is the next trillion-dollar market, says Michael Dell. IDC has a more modest and specific prediction, forecasting the market for big data technology and services to grow at a 23.1% compound annual growth rate, reaching $48.6 billion in 2019. Continue reading…

3. 7 Important Big Data Trends for 2016

It is the end of the year again and that means it is time for the Big Data trends for next year. I did that for 2014, I did it for 2015 and now it is time for 2016. What is awaiting us in 2016? Which Big Data trends will have an impact on the global Big Data domain? How will Big Data affect organizations in 2016? Let’s have a look at seven of the most important Big Data trends for the year 2016. Continue reading…

4. Lack of Big Data Talent Hampers Corporate Analytics

A shallow talent pool of skilled workers to analyze big data, combined with the challenge of weeding out bad information, continues to cause nightmares for CIOs.

kalid khan at kearney Khalid Khan, partner at A.T. Kearney.
Two-thirds of companies that possess even the most advanced analytics capabilities cannot hire enough people who can generate insights from corporate data, according to new research from A.T. Kearney, which surveyed 430 senior executives. Moreover, companies will need 33 percent more big data talent over the next five years, says Khalid Khan, A.T. Kearney partner and co-author of the research. Continue reading…

5. Big Data Still Requires Humans To Make Meaningful Connections

Big data is a big deal, make no mistake about it, but it’s probably not as big a deal as it’s going to be eventually when we really figure out how to make good use of it. For now, we have this muddled middle where we understand the value of the data, but most organizations and governments don’t know how to use that data to its full potential. Continue reading…

6. The 10 Coolest Big Data Products Of 2015

The big data technology market remains one of the fastest growing segments of the IT industry. In November, market research firm IDC said the market for big data-related infrastructure, software and services will grow at a compound annual growth rate of 23.1 percent through 2019, with spending reaching $48.6 billion in 2019. Specifically, sales of big data software are expected to grow at a CAGR of 26.2 percent during that span. Continue reading…

7. Where Does Big Data Fit Into Marketing?

Where does your big data fit in to your marketing? This is a very tricky question. Of course you want to capture customer information as much as possible so that your marketing team can be much smarter about the method they use to communicate to prospects and existing customers. BUT, marketers first need to decide if the brand wants them to create a sales promotional strategy or a brand building strategy. Continue reading…

8. Misconceptions Regarding Big Data And Why It’s Important To Clarify Those?

There is a lot of hype around big data, and this, to a certain extent is harmful for businesses. Sounds shocking? Well, since there are so many articles, research reports and studies about big data, people are provided with more than enough information, and this, somewhere down the line, makes big data look too easy to understand. This is where all the problems begin since even before knowing the original features and characteristics of this new phenomenon, people start assuming a lot. As a result, a lot of misconceptions get generated. Continue reading…

9. Big Buzz About Big Data: 5 Ways Big Data Is Changing Finance

Big Data is a big deal… particularly for financial markets. As the CEO of a Big Data company, I’d like to share with you some insights into this shift, which is spurring transparency, capital availability and better risk awareness. Add in the coolness and creativity factors – more Sand Hill Road, less Wall Street – and it’s clear that Big Data is already having big impacts on always-changing financial markets. And this is change that you, not just your IT professionals, should believe in. Continue reading…

10. Where Mobile is Failing: Big Data

Big data has been a big buzzword in advertising for several years now. Alas, for many mobile advertisers, it remains just that: A buzzword and not something they’re actually using to better target their ads or focus their media plans. That’s according to a new study conducted by Forrester Research and real time ad bidding platform AdTheorent. Continue reading…

Why do you need to implement a DevOpsSec team? – Idexcel DevOps Roundup

1. Why do you need to implement a DevOpsSec team?

Just 20 years ago, organizations relied on a single wall of defense to secure their applications and networks. Fast forward to 2015 and that large fence is no longer adequate. With the proliferation of mobile, cloud and SaaS technology adding to the complexity of ever-advancing systems and networks, it becomes much more important that teams across an organization work together as one, toward a common goal. We’ve already seen enterprises adopting new methods of organizing internal structures to increase collaboration through DevOps, but as security continues to be top of mind for organizations, many are looking to further this approach by including the security team in the DevOps conversation. With a DevOpsSec team, organizations can work toward delivering software that is not just reliable, but also secure. [Continue Reading…]

2. OpsClarity tackles the Ops in DevOps

Applications are getting more complicated, and the amount of data surrounding them is beginning to explode. OpsClarity, an operations analytics and monitoring company coming out of stealth mode today, wants to contain that explosion. The company is releasing an advanced operations platform designed to bring intelligence to Web-scale applications. [Continue Reading…]

3. 7 signs you’re doing devops wrong

Devops is a transformative ethos that many companies are putting to their advantage. As with anything that hinges on culture, however, it can be too easy to slap together a few tools, sprinkle in new processes, and call yourself a devops-fueled organization. After all, saying that your company embraces devops and regularly practices devops techniques is popular nowadays, and it can serve as great PR for bringing in great talent to your team. But in truth, many companies — and technical recruiters — that are proclaiming their devotion to devops from the hilltops aren’t really devops organizations. [Continue Reading…]

4. Why over 40% of IT departments are a DevOps nightmare

DevOps is an admirable step forward for operations and development teams, but can the infrastructure guys support it? A survey from infrastructure automation software firm Qualisystems suggests that many firms have significant gaps in their support for DevOps projects.

The company surveyed 643 attendees at VMWorld in the US and Europe, ranging from technical professionals in the trenches through to C-suite staff. Seventeen per cent of the respondents said that it would take more than a month to deploy new infrastructure for development and testing staff. Another quarter said it would take over a week. That’s 43 per cent of firms that are slower than treacle when it comes to provisioning new kit. [Continue Reading…]

Latest Trends in Software Testing 2015 – Idexcel Testing Roundup

1. Latest Trends in Software Testing 2015 – How the World Tests?

Software testing techniques, methodologies and tools are always changing.

Blame the emerging technologies and new platforms or accuse the advancement of new devices!

Truth of the matter is, businesses around the world are transforming and so are their IT systems and software testing world is not immune to this phenomenon.

Zephyr conducts an annual survey wherein 6000+ of its customers in 100 countries take part to answer some interesting questions to prepare a report. [Continue Reading…]

2. How Do We Sell the “Test Early” Principle?

Deliver just enough, focus on a minimum viable product, test early, test often, drive testing to the left, build quality in, prevent defects from occurring—these are all sound bites that communicate the need and intention of “building the right thing right.” But goals and principles are always easier to articulate than they are to actually implement.

I’m often asked, How do we convince our key stakeholders that testing earlier and at lower levels in the system or application is beneficial? Usually there are three camps in this regard: [Continue Reading…]

3. 7 Performance Testing Fallacies Undermining Your Test Strategy

When you do the same thing many times, you can start to make false assumptions about your work process—and testing is no exception. Sofía Palamarchuk discusses some common fallacies about performance tests specifically, and how they can end up costing testers and developers significantly more than they should.

It’s always interesting to find out the many ways in which we can be wrong. In his book Perfect Software and Other Illusions about Testing, Jerry Weinberg explained a number of fallacies regarding testing in general. Here, I’m going to discuss some that relate specifically to performance tests—and how they can end up costing testers and developers significantly more money down the line. [Continue Reading…]

4. Discussion: How did you “fall” into testing?

I was wondering how you “fell” into testing? I haven’t met anyone who started out wanting to be in QA, they just fell into it!

I’ll start, my SO has been a test manager for the better part of two decades, and the company she was working for had an opening. I used to be a forklift mechanic and it never occurred to me that I could be in QA. My SO, however, fell into QA from her accounting job to test a new account management system as she kept breaking the current system in use.

So what’s your story?

Was software testing a chosen path, or did you too “fall” into software testing? [Share your stories here!]

Importance of Business Intelligence in Today’s World

Business intelligence is a set of tools and techniques for transformation of raw data into meaningful and actionable information for business analysis purposes. It is a technology driven process for handling large amounts of unstructured data, analyzing the data and presenting usable information to corporate executives, business managers and other end users. This helps them in making more informed business decisions. Business intelligence includes a vast variety of tools, applications and methodologies that helps in collecting data from internal as well as external sources. The data is then prepared for analysis and queries are made against it and reports, dashboards and data visualizations are created that makes the results available for decision makers. Business intelligence programs come with certain potential benefits. These include accelerating and improving decision making; optimizing internal business processes; increasing operational efficiency; driving new revenues and gaining competitive advantage over business rivals. All these make business intelligence very important in today’s world.

When proper companywide business intelligence is in place, the management is better equipped to look into and check various aspects of business including finances, production and human resource. This information can be synthesized with the help of business intelligence tools and reports generated. But it becomes an extremely tedious task to skim through hundreds of pages in detailed periodic reports especially when discussing with clients. But suitable business intelligence tools can save time and can give them a clear picture about the worth of the company. Thus there is a scope for improving sales and marketing opportunities.

In the present age, where competition is high, a company should handle strengths and weaknesses expertly. Several business intelligence tools help companies in strengthening their capabilities and recognize weaknesses as compared to their competitors. These tools are extremely useful in identifying market trends and changes in these trends. Such information allows the companies to respond immediately to changing trends and make the most of the opportunities.

Business intelligence tools continuously monitor existing and potential customers. They also monitor those customers that may have been dissatisfied with a company’s products or services. One of the main advantages of business intelligence is that it boosts a company’s ability to analyze current consumer buying trends. Once a company understands the consumer’s needs, it can use this information to develop products that match the current consumption and hence increase profitability.

SaaS BI or Software as a service Business Intelligence

This is a web based cloud model that allows companies to rent or borrow software instead of actually installing it on their own computers. This is also known as Cloud BI. This is a better model because there are no upfront costs or additional staffing requirements needed to manage the business intelligence system. Many organizations are likely to opt for cloud based BI in future.

In conclusion, informed decisions to enhance a company’s performance is extremely important. Business intelligence has all the necessary tools that make this happen. Although it was considered for years that business intelligence tools were available only for larger organizations, the belief is changing gradually and organizations in all industries and of all sizes are beginning to make use of the magical tool called business intelligence.

Best Practices for Mobile App Testing

Any application software developed for mobile should be tested for its correct functioning, user friendly approach and consistency. Testing could be either manual or automated. Ever since smart phones came in to use, more than 2 million Apps have become available for downloading. We have Apps for music, games, financial transactions, ticket booking, ordering food, social networking and so many more categories, and the number is still growing. As these apps are invading into our personal and professional lives, it becomes increasingly important to ensure that these Apps are trustworthy, useful, easy to use and well developed by following certain techniques and best practices to test any mobile application.

A comprehensive testing strategy with specified guidelines for all testers should be devised so as to bring uniformity in testing. Once an App is designed and developed, it should be tested on real devices once it has been tested on emulator and simulator. Testing on real devices ensures realistic results and also the tester can understand the look and feel of the App with its general usability. The App should be tested at different stages of the development. This helps in identifying issues at an early stage, if any. With so many services, networks and operating systems available easily, it becomes an exhausting task to test an app that can meet all the criterion. It is essential to determine the devices and operating systems that the App caters to, and then perform tests on them. At any time, automated testing is better than manual testing as it saves time and can be used repeatedly. As an app gets more complex, repeatedly testing them for bugs becomes difficult. Hence certain software have been developed that take care of the testing. Software such as Monkey runner and Robotium automate the entire testing process.

One of the biggest challenges in the world of mobile app users is the high user expectations. It is better to know target groups and their expectations. Once user preferences have been identified, it becomes easier to decide the testing devices. To achieve this, we can conduct market research, use mobile app statistics and interview customers. Based on this information, different groups can be created based on the priorities. One group may require latest testing devices and another may require fewer. The functioning of mobile apps in various types of data networks should be tested. The app should be able to work with different network speeds and handle network transitions. For example, 3G or Wi-Fi is comparatively faster than a data network like EDGE. The app should be capable of a smooth transition from 3G to EDGE, depending on the availability.

It is advisable to start testing during the development stage itself as it reduces the cost of fixing it. Early detection and fixing of bugs ensures that the problem does not magnify later. And testing should be carried out often because with every small development in the app, it is essential to ensure that everything works as expected according to the new changes.

The app must also be tested for various languages across the globe along with popular social networking sites and markets because they can significantly impact the layout. Hence it must be addressed at the beginning of the development process. Most of the modern phones are equipped with different hardware and sensors. The app should function against sensor specific scenarios and hardware. For example, if the mobile app takes a picture, it should handle picture resolutions, sizes and uploading photos to the server. It is important to check how much battery is consumed by the app. Chances of an app that consumes more battery getting deleted is higher.

It is necessary to test the app’s installation and update processes. During install and uninstall tests, app testers have to look for crashes or any other problems that might occur. After uninstalling an app, the phone storage should be checked to ensure that all app data has been removed. The usability of an app has to be constantly tested. All UI elements must be easy to use and understand. The app must provide clear explanatory text and error messages. In case of an error situation, the app should guide the user how to resolve the problem in the app. During development and testing phase, app testers need to verify that the app uses only permissions that the app requires. Mobile users who are sensitive about private data are unlikely to install any app that is unclear about permission requirements.

In conclusion, for any mobile app to be successful, it must undergo complete and accurate testing. It has to rise above the challenges and deliver high performance under varying conditions of usage.

Mobile application manual testing Process in real time:

• App should be tested on all types of mobile networks (ex:2G,3G,4G,LTE,and Wifi)
• App should be tested on different OS environments like iOS (iPhone and iTab), Android (mobiles &Tab) and Windows OS enabled mobile.
• Automatic updates suggestions/Alerts should be available whenever there is new features/updates done on App.
• Tester needs to uninstall the old version of app and install new version of App on mobile to test new version
• Make sure that app screen should be auto fit to any size screens of mobile device (3 inches to latest 5.5 inches screen)
• Make sure that GUI is as per the requirement specification .It should be user friendly.

Mobile application automation testing Process in real time:

Pre-requisite for automation: App must be tested manually and should be stable.

• All the above scenarios can be tested using automation except for the GUI testing.
• Monkey talk, Selendriod plug-inns are used to test Android apps along with Selenium tool.
• Appium plug-inns are used to test iOS apps along with Selenium tool.
• Automation tool should capture all the gestures available from smart phones like tapping ,pinching, scroll-down ,scroll-up etc.,
• Tool should have capabilities to automate functional testing and non functional testing for the App.
• Different tools like HP UFT, Telerik test Studio Complete, Selenium etc., are available in the market to automate Mobile apps.

Big Data’s Relationship with Business Intelligence and Data Warehousing – Big Data Roundup

1. Big Data’s Relationship with Business Intelligence and Data Warehousing

It seems like you can’t pick up a technical magazine without reading about how big data is changing the world—and the untold implications of this technology. But what the heck is big data? And didn’t we already solve this thing with business intelligence and data warehousing?

Big data, or BD, is the collection of transaction-level detail for analysis. The data is kept close to the transactional detail so it can be examined for hidden trends only seen when you analyze the individual transactions. The data can come from different sources but is analyzed in a common pool. This is most often a feed (or copy) of the transactions as they occur; they are streamed to the BD solution. Often, the value of the data is very time-dependent; the sooner the information is available, the more valuable it is.

There are four key terms used when talking about BD:
[Continue Reading…]

2. Visualizing Big Data with augmented and virtual reality: challenges and research agenda

This paper provides a multi-disciplinary overview of the research issues and achievements in the field of Big Data and its visualization techniques and tools. The main aim is to summarize challenges in visualization methods for existing Big Data, as well as to offer novel solutions for issues related to the current state of Big Data Visualization. This paper provides a classification of existing data types, analytical methods, visualization techniques and tools, with a particular emphasis placed on surveying the evolution of visualization methodology over the past years. Based on the results, we reveal disadvantages of existing visualization methods. Despite the technological development of the modern world, human involvement (interaction), judgment and logical thinking are necessary while working with Big Data. Therefore, the role of human perceptional limitations involving large amounts of information is evaluated. Based on the results, a non-traditional approach is proposed: we discuss how the capabilities of Augmented Reality and Virtual Reality could be applied to the field of Big Data Visualization. We discuss the promising utility of Mixed Reality technology integration with applications in Big Data Visualization. Placing the most essential data in the central area of the human visual field in Mixed Reality would allow one to obtain the presented information in a short period of time without significant data losses due to human perceptual issues. Furthermore, we discuss the impacts of new technologies, such as Virtual Reality displays and Augmented Reality helmets on the Big Data visualization as well as to the classification of the main challenges of integrating the technology.
[Continue Reading…]

3. A Successful Approach to the Big Data Adoption Journey

Randy Bean recently wrote in the Wall Street Journal, “Big Data represents a business adoption paradox: It promises speed, but successful business adoption takes time. When I advise executives or speak to business groups, I encourage organizations to view business transforming initiatives like Big Data as a journey. Success ultimately depends upon organizational alignment, process change, and people. Organizations need to develop a long-term plan and destination with many checkpoints along the way. True there are opportunities for “quick wins”– to ensure credibility, build organizational support, establish momentum, and secure funding—but for the most part, patience and persistence are essential.”
[Continue Reading…]

4. Why your next big database decision may be a graph

NoSQL databases are clearly on the rise, but not all NoSQL is created equal.

After all, 451 Research recently discontinued its longstanding tracking of NoSQL database popularity, arguing that since “none of the top 10 look like changing places any time soon, and none of the players outside stand any chance of breaking into the top 10, the time has come to retire the NoSQL LinkedIn Skills Index.”
[Continue Reading…]

3 HR Trends That Are Becoming Best Practices – Staffing Roundup

1. 3 HR Trends That Are Becoming Best Practices

In today’s business world, the only constant is change — especially when it comes to HR. The human resources department of yesterday, largely focused on mitigating compliance and employee-related issues, is long gone.

Jason Averbrook, CEO of the Marcus Buckingham Company, explains here:

“A hundred years later, a lot of organizations are still running HR that same way; focusing on risk, focusing on compliance, focusing on the transactional side of it, but there’s a whole new era, and things like unions and pensions and transparency of the workplace have changed.” [Continue Reading…]

2. 8 Hot Tech Jobs Getting Big Salary Bumps In 2016

Although the nation’s professional workforce is expected to post an average of a 4.1% base pay increase in 2016, technology workers overall are expected to fare better with a 5.3% increase. Thanks to an increasing focus on digital strategy among businesses, several “creative” positions are set to cash in as well, according to the 2016 Salary Guide from staffing firm Robert Half Technology and The Creative Group.

Wireless network engineers in particular will be rolling in the dough, with an anticipated base pay increase approaching double-digit growth next year. Meanwhile, creative jobs like multimedia designers and content strategists are expected to post higher gains than the overall national bump and the tech sector. [Continue Reading…]

3. Getting Employees Excited About a New Direction

When your company is in trouble — a new competitor or technology threatens your business model, your cost structure changes, the economy tanks — you have one job as a leader: to get the company back on track. The crisis provides compelling reason for change and, if companies can weather it, they can emerge stronger. But no company today can rest on its laurels. Disruptors can come from anywhere, any time. Leaders — especially those in large, successful organizations — must create an environment where people thrive on passion and purpose, and are as agile and innovative as their potential disruptors. How do you take a successful company — one already highly regarded by employees, customers, and shareholders alike — and reignite people’s passion? How do you energize and galvanize them around a new course? [Continue Reading…]

4. What makes your staffing company different or great?

When people ask about what makes your staffing company different – or great – how do you answer it? Because you put customers first? What does that mean exactly? And is there a difference between responding to the needs of your customers and being truly customer-centric? [Continue Reading…]