The Final VSO Updates for 2014

software-updateIt’s nearing the end of 2014 (where’d the time go?!) and Microsoft has pushed out the final updates for Visual Studio Online for the year (the next release will be near the end of January, 2015). However, just because it’s the last push of the year doesn’t mean it isn’t a great update. In fact, there are several great things in this update.

Here’s the quick rundown…

Quick EditWith this update, you can now make edits to a file in version control (Team Foundation Version Control or Git) directly from within your web browser.

You can use the built-in “diff” view to see what changes you’ve made before committing them. For HTML and markdown files, you can also preview them. When you save your changes, the update is immediately committed/checked in.

This new feature also allows you to add new files, rename existing files, or delete them all together.

If you’re making use of the Welcome hub, the maintenance of markdown files just became a lot easier! With these new edit features, and the existing Markdown rendering capabilities in VSO, you can easily create and maintain wiki-style pages within your projects.

Backlog & Query Filters – There is now a new filter textbox displayed for backlogs and queries. Entering text into this textbox will immediately filter the results to match the text entered.

Task Board Improvements – Several improvements have been made here:

  • You can now drag-n-drop (e.g. to reorder/re-parent) items on all spring backlogs
    • Re-parenting also works on the task board
  • You can now drag stories form both the sprint backlog and the task board directly to the product backlog (or any other sprint)
  • A summary of work not start or in-progress is now displayed on the task board

New Service Hook Integrations – A couple of new integrations have been added to Service Hooks:

I have no personal experience with either of these service but, the more integration options we have with VSO, the better :-)

By my count that brings us to a total of 17 integrations available within VSO. You can view more details about service hooks here.

Preview APIsA subject near and dear to my own heart is the REST APIs provided for VSO. With this release, a new set of REST APIs are available for preview – specifically for adding, editing, renaming, and deleting files in Team Foundation Version Control and Git projects (up until now, the REST APIs for version control have been primarily read only).

CodeLens for VSO PreviewFor those of you who have been able to make use of CodeLens with TFS projects you can also now use it with VSO! This is a Visual Studio Ultimate-only feature, however, so your mileage may vary.

It’s worth noting that, although these updates are being pushed out, it will take the better part of the week for the new features to show up in everyone’s VSO accounts.

You can read more about this update here as well as view the features timeline – which also now includes a bit of a roadmap for new features planned in upcoming releases.

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