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News and events

2012

Welcome to our news archive for 2012.

Our news pages list stories chronologically, the most recent appearing at the top of the list below. Expand each story to read it in full by click the "More information" button below each headline.

nFocus Present at Test Management Forum

24/10/2012

Quick read

On Wednesday 24 October Sam Clarke, nFocus Principal Consultant, presented at the Test Management Forum. The session was titled “ALM - an opportunity for testing to breathe life back into quality?”

Synopsis

"Application Lifecycle Management is increasingly seen as delivering significant benefits to a business, by enabling governance throughout the life of a business application from conception through application retirement.ALM covers more than just development of an application; it reaches into the initial business objectives and on through operational aspects including upgrades, cost of ownership and retirement. It also helps ensure that those original business outcomes are met successfully.

ALM is independent of development methodologies and scales according to the size of the project or programme. The business, small or large, needs constant reassurance that the application to be implemented will do the right job at the right price, will be of sufficient quality and delivers the anticipated return on investment and business outcomes during its lifetime.

This workshop will look at how the testing and quality assurance profession can step up to the challenges of working in this environment, by being an integral part of the governance process driving quality throughout the application lifecycle. It will cover (but is not limited to) opportunities, challenges, roles, skills, supporting infrastructure and barriers when working in this environment.

Output

Findings from the October TMF Workshop
Slide deck

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Visual Studio 2012 Testing Launch Event

03/10/2012

Quick read

This month (October) nFocus will be hosting a Visual Studio 2012 Testing Launch Event in both Birmingham and London!

This event will demo the valuable testing tools currently available within Visual Studio, as well as the new functionality available within the 2012 release. Following the sessions, we will be holding a drinks reception with canapés to celebrate the launch.

The event also features Giles Davies, Developer Tools Technology Specialist from Microsoft.

Agenda

13:00 – 13:30
Registration and coffees

13:30 – 14:15
Manual Testing with Microsoft Test Manager 2012
By Danny Crone, Technical Director, nFocus Testing

14:15 – 15:00
Performance testing in Visual Studio 2012
By Scott Summers, Director, nFocus Testing

15:00 – 15:30
Coffee break

15:30 – 16:15
New exploratory testing functionality within Visual Studio 2012
By Giles Davies, Developer Tools Technology Specialist, Microsoft

16:15 – 17:00
It’s not just pie in the sky, it's testing in the clouds
By Danny Crone, Technical Director, nFocus Testing

17:00 – 17:30
nFocus and Visual Studio Quality Tools
By Scott Summers, Director, nFocus Testing

17:30 – 19:00
VS2012 launch celebration drinks reception and canapés

If you would like to attend please click the appropriate venue below:

Birmingham 22 October
London 23 October

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VS2012 London Launch Event

18/09/2012

Quick read

nFocus would like to invite you to Microsoft's Visual Studio 2012 main launch event in London on 4 October 2012!

Come along and hear from Shanku Niyogi, Director of Program Management for Visual Studio 2012 talking about what's new for 2012. You will also be able to hear from nFocus' Technical Director Danny Crone!

nFocus have been asked to present the test session during this event. Danny's session is titled "Visual Studio 2012 Testing - It's not just pie in the sky, it's testing in the clouds". This session will take the user on a journey of how to use Team Foundation Service to manage the build and deployment of a solution to an Azure test environment and then have an Azure test client run tests against that environment.

Agenda

13.00
Registration

13.30
Keynote - Shanku Niyogi: What's new in 2012

14.30
Black Marble: Lab Management in Visual Studio 2012

15.30
nFocus: Visual Studio 2012 Testing - It's not just pie in the sky, it's testing in the clouds

16.30
Q&A

17.00
Close

The event is quickly reaching capacity, so please click here to register for your free ticket today.

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What's new in Visual Studio 2012 for Testing

08/08/2012

Quick read

This video covers the new functionality within Visual Studio 2011 from a testing perspective.

This includes Reduced Toolbar Command placement, Monochromatic colour scheme, fixes and changes within Microsoft Test Manager, Exploratory testing and task boards, feedback tools within TFS.

Please visit our Knowledge Centre video section here

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Exploratory testing in Microsoft Visual Studio 2012

27/07/2012

Quick read

Some people think exploratory testing is completed in an uncontrolled manner. The tester will set out to determine if the software actually works without giving it a great deal of thought or consideration of his/her goals.

For exploratory testing to be considered a success the tester must have a certain level of knowledge about the AUT as well as being creative in approach. Unlike scripted testing an exploratory testing session may not be linked to any form of requirement, user story or back log item and so it can become an exercise which fails to deliver an audit trail…

Click here to read the article in full.

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nFocus Present at the Birmingham Software Tester Club Meetup

17/07/2012

Quick read

nFocus’ Principal Consultant Sam Clarke will be presenting at the Birmingham Software Tester Club Meetup on Wednesday 25 July. His session is titled, “ALM – an opportunity for testing?”

The session looks at the way Application Lifecycle Management is increasingly seen as delivering significant benefits to a business, by enabling governance throughout the life of a business application from conception through application retirement. ALM is independent of development methodologies and scales according to the size of the project. This short workshop will look at how the testing and quality assurance profession can step up to the challenges of working in this environment, by being an integral part of the governance process driving quality throughout the application lifecycle.

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nFocus attends Microsoft’s Worldwide Partner Conference 2012

17/07/2012

Quick read

Following on from another brilliant Microsoft Worldwide Partner Conference (WPC), I thought it would be good to update you with the latest and greatest news that emerged during the week. This year, WPC had over 16,000 delegates attending from over 156 countries, making it the largest WPC yet!

Sunday
nFocus landed on Saturday afternoon (07/07) and stayed up rather late to ensure we were on time-zone ASAP. This was particularly tough as we knew we had an early start on Sunday as we wanted to attend the pre-conference Application Lifecycle Management day…

Click here to read the article in full.

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Is it a Glitch or a Meltdown?

09/07/2012

Quick read

It depends on who you talk to as to whether the most recent problem faced by the RBS group is described as a mere “glitch” or a catastrophic “meltdown”. As you might expect, Stephen Hester, CEO of RBS, firmly sticks to the former.

We still don’t know the full details of what went wrong at RBS, NatWest and Ulster Bank. What we do know is that there was a change to an overnight batch and that change caused a problem which meant millions of payments never got made and some people could not login to online banking systems…

Click here to read the article in full.

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Full application lifecycle testing are Application Lifecycle Management (ALM) tools the solution?

16/04/2012

Quick read

nFocus has published a new blog article.

"A colleague and I recently presented at SIGIST on behalf of Microsoft and during that session we asked the question: How many of you do full lifecycle testing? We had explained what we meant by full lifecycle testing – testing of all the project deliverables from requirements and design..."

Click here to read the article in full.

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Software Testing Strategy in the Cloud

12/04/2012

Quick read

nFocus is running the next chapter in its Software Testing Strategy workshop series focussing on the Cloud.

Course Details

Date: 29/05/2012
Time: 09:30 - 17:00
Course Leader: Sam Clarke, Principal Consultant, nFocus Ltd
Venue: Intellect Conference Suite, Russell Square House, 10-12 Russell Square, London WC1B 5EE
In association with: Intellect

Who is it for?

Personnel responsible for definition and implementation of a cost effective and efficient testing policy and strategy in a software development or services company. This session is targeted at those who are keen to understand the implications, opportunities and challenges of testing with cloud technologies and agile-like processes.

What is it about?

Are you confident that the new release of your product or service meets the expectations of your clients? Do you have testing challenges due to the implementation of Agile, Scrum or Cloud computing? Do you have issues with cost of rework due to defects in your product?

Testing is a key contributor to answering, and responding to, each of these questions. In order to retain and grow market share whilst not compromising the reliability of new and existing function means testing becomes a critical success factor. However the migration to Agile and Scrum processes together with new technology solutions such as Cloud computing means that traditional test approaches may not deliver the required benefits.

The objective of this course is to take you through the key aspects of forming a test policy and strategy allowing you to establish your weak and strong points and a plan of action. In essence a process of "getting to know what you don't know" so that informed decisions can be taken on appropriate investment in testing.

It will also cover the challenges of testing in the new world of Agile, Scrum and Cloud computing and how they can be addressed.

The workshop approach allows interaction between attendees establishing common issues and their solutions. The class will be run as a sequence of talks each followed by interactive session allowing delegates to focus on areas of common concern.

Places on this training course are sold on a first come first served basis, so please book early to avoid disappointment. For more information or to book your place please click here.

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nFocus to present session at this year’s Testing & Finance Conference, London.

10/04/2012

Quick read

nFocus Director Scott Summers have been invited to talk at this year’s Testing & Finance conference being held 16-17 May, in London.

Regression Testing Live Systems – Doing it Better

Abstract

“Many organisations, have operational budgets for maintaining systems once they are in production and another budget for projects to develop new products or enhance existing systems. In banks this is typically called ‘Run the Bank’ and ‘Change the Bank’. Project budgets are often constrained, testing budgets are very tightly constrained and so there is little forethought for the regression tests that are required post go-live. It is understandable – it’s not the project managers’ problem and the business just want its new, shiny system as quickly and cheaply as possible. This results in systems going live with no way to adequately test them when changes and fixes start to be applied. To retrospectively create a regression pack at this point is difficult – the project team has moved on, documentation is out of date and there is little or no money in the budget. The result is increased risk to the business because regression testing is inadequate. If the desire to rectify the problem is strong enough, it often requires an expensive and drawn out solution.

By considering this eventual problem in the test strategy, the business and system owner can save time and effort while reducing business risk. Test cases can be written in a way that enables them to be automated and maintained post go-live. This needs to be planned, budgeted for and managed but it really is not a massive overhead. There are some simple techniques that can be applied and the key to success is deciding the approach early on in the testing lifecycle. Using a keyword driven framework also enables automation scripts to be generated with minimal overhead. Again, planning and implementing this during the project lifecycle is the most efficient way to operate. However, real life is not that simple and in the cut and thrust of a project, this is an easy overhead to cut. As such, it will more often than not be cut. So, post go-live how can an automated regression pack be created cheaply and quickly. We suggest an agile approach to testing and treating the development of the automated tests as a software development project. As such, a back log of requirements is created and these are picked off and assigned to sprints. In this analogy, each test case is equivalent to and becomes a requirement. The original functional requirements are related to the test case back log but these are not what is used for the sprints. This encompasses a risk based approach and the regression pack is built up over time with the most important tests being developed first. If there are no test cases to use as requirements, then these can be created at the same time as the backlog by again using a keyword driven framework. Saving time and effort when compared to writing test cases from scratch.”

More information

For Scott’s full bio please click here.

For more information about the conference, and to book your place please click here.

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The HM Government Cloudstore; Innovative technology… Innovative approach!

02/04/2012

Quick read

Giles Ali, one of nFocus’s software testing rock stars has written a new blog article about our involvement on the UK Government Cloudstore.

He writes, “Thought I’d jot down a bit about one of our recent engagements I have been working on; the UK Gov Cloudstore App Store with SOLIDSOFT. This capability was launched in late February to much media fanfare and acclaim…”

Click here to read the article in full.

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nFocus, Testfest and Visual Studio 2010

10/01/2012

Quick read

Testfest is a new and exciting event being held in Brighton on the 22nd February 2012. This is the first iteration of the event, and it aims to bring together the traditional testing community with the gaming industry.

The official event synopsis states, “At Testfest you will learn about different testing techniques across all industries, discover how different companies develop their QA, explore other people’s ideas and problems and discuss your own theories, find out about and try all the latest test tools and have a go at some different types of testing to win some prizes!”

nFocus (a Microsoft Gold ALM partner) will be attending and helping out on the Microsoft stand throughout the conference. The stand will have a number of machines set up with Visual Studio 2010 Test Manager and Coded UI for delegates to try out. If you’re considering adopting the test functionality with VS2010, or simply want to find out more then this is the event, and stand for you!

The event is being held at the Brighton Metropole hotel, and it costs £60 including VAT to attend. To book your place please click here.

For more information of the event, check out this interview with the event organiser on the a MSDN blog.

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