Here’s why Visual Studio 2013.4/TFS 2013.4 rocks

As of yesterday, Visual Studio 2013 and TFS 2013.4 RC is out to the public. The general consensus around the office is that it’s looking pretty sweet. Here are a few updates that we’re excited about:

Stakeholder license

Unlimited free stakeholder licenses now available for TFS 2013.4 RC, including:

  • Full read/write/create on all work items
  • Create, run and save (to “My Queries”) work item queries
  • View project and team home pages
  • Access to the backlog, including add and update (but no ability to reprioritize the work)
  • Ability to receive work item alerts

Control panel

Check out Brian Harry’s blog post on that for Visual Studio Online here. What does this mean? You can now give your stakeholders/customers these licenses at no added cost, and they can actually gain insight into your project’s progress. Just make sure that you don’t have those 200 bugs on the backlog.

Pull Requests

If you don’t know what they are, pull requests are basically a way to let team members know that you’ve pushed changes to the repository. They can then review the changes, suggest edits, and push commits as follow-up. Visual Studio Online had this first (see this walkthrough), but now it’s available on TFS.


Why is this important? We’ve heard clients ask if Git has code reviews for TFS in the past as soon as they have learned that they can now choose TFVC or Git after upgrading to TFS 2013. So Git users, this is the solution for you. We think that pull requests are one of the coolest updates in TFS 2013.4 RC.

Testing updates

Three things:

  • Associated test suites
  • Recent test result
  • Test case charting.

When you change a test case, you can now see in Web Access which test suites were affected by that change. With recent test results, you can also see the recent results for test cases in another panel. Lastly, create and pin charts, trend reports for test planning and test outcomes to the homepage.

Visual Studio Team Foundation Server 2013

Visual Studio Team Foundation Server 2013


Test Suite: Release 1

Why do you care? Trend reports and recent test results were originally only viewable in Microsoft Test Manager, but now testers and developers can view these in Web Access, which is pretty significant. Since associated test suites are new, this adds a fair amount of depth to insight into tests, which we know that our clients have been clamoring about.

We can’t wait for the RTM to come out. For more information, Brian Harry has blogged about this, and here’s the full KB article.

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