Microsoft plugs continuous delivery into Visual Studio, Azure

The Continuous Delivery Tools for Visual Studio extension sets up an automated build, test, and release pipeline

Microsoft is adding continuous delivery capabilities to its Visual Studio 2017 IDE.

The Continuous Delivery Tools for Visual Studio extension, announced this week, lets developers set up an automated build, test, and release pipeline on the Visual Studio Team Services cloud ALM platform. It works with ASP.Net 4 and ASP.Net Core applications targeting the Azure App Services and Azure Container Services. Developers can monitor their pipeline with notifications in the IDE that alert them of any build failures in a continuous integration run.

The intent is to enable developers to automate and stay up to date with their devops pipeline. Developers can click on a build failure notification for information on build quality via the Visual Studio Team Services dashboard.

"The Configure Continuous Delivery dialog lets you pick a branch from the repository to deploy to a target App service," said Ahmed Metwally, senior program manager for Visual Studio at Microsoft. "The extension creates build and release definitions on Team Services ... and then kicks off the first build and deployment automatically. From this point onward, Team Services will trigger a new build and deployment whenever you push changes up to the repository."

The currently downloadable version of the extension only works with Visual Studio 2017 Release Candidate 3 or above, while the IDE upgrade itself is still in a release candidate phase. A previous version of the extension was automatically installed with the .Net Core preview workload in RC2. A commenter on a Microsoft blog asked if the extension would work with the popular Jenkins CD/CI platform, but the bulletin states it requires Visual Studio Team Services.

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