Team Foundation Task Board Enhancer: version 0.6 released

 

New release of my Team Foundation Task Board Enhancer (previous versions 0.1 , 02 , 0.3, 0.4 and 0.5).

Let’s just start with standard disclaimer Smile

This extension uses undocumented TFS mechanisms, this means there is a risk (which I’m not able to quantify) it will stop working in the future with new TFS releases or updates . If that happens, the fact that the extension no longer works, it will be my sole responsibility and not of Microsoft.

The TFS Board Enhancer is a TFS Web Access extension, that adds extra capabilities to the TFS Task Board and the TFS Kanban board.

  • Allows you to see the work item ids on the board (without having to open the editor),
  • Allows you to auto refresh the board at a fixed interval (to be used on unattended wall boards for example), auto scroll the board, so you can see the whole board without having to scroll manually (also to be used on unattended wall boards),
  • Expand/collapse all requirements (or whatever your process template calls then, PBIs, user stories,…)
  • maximize your workspace by removing unneeded clutter from the screen.
  • Show the state on your requirement
  • Hide/Collapse closed requirements
  • Remembers your settings between uses

This is the list of features until version 0.5, with version 0.6 only one feature has been added, but it has been one of the most requested features.

Show blocked requirements/tasks

One of the most request features, is the ability to easily see which requirements/tasks are blocked.

This feature allows you to see at a glance which tasks (or requirements) are blocked, it works on MSF CMMI, MSF Agile and MS Scrum process templates (CMMI supports both tasks and blocked requirements, the other two only support blocked tasks).

A task/requirement is blocked if the Blocked field is set to Yes (the reference name of Microsoft.VSTS.CMMI.Blocked)

image

If a requirement is blocked, the word Blocked in red appears over the requirement title

image

If the task is blocked, the left border becomes a little bigger and red instead of the regular blue.

image

This feature doesn’t has a filter to enable/disable it. It’s enabled by default. But you can disable it, by passing the parameter _tspSkipBlocked in the query string (no value necessary).

This only works against the task board, it is not supported on the Kanban board.

All in all it’s pretty simple, but would like to have your thoughts…

Download version 0.6 of the extension

if you have doubts how to install it, it’s fully explained in a previous post Team Foundation Task Board: Auto Refresh

Leave a comment ?

24 Comments.

  1. Installed :)

    It is however a bit slow to update the the info, eg. 2-5 sec before the blocked and red colors appears.

    • Yes, sorry about that. Should have added a note about this.

      Unlike other features this requires getting some extra info from the server before the blocked info is drawn,therefore there is a small delay (it occurs only once during load) until this info is fetched from the server. (while all other features, use information that is already available on the board from the start).

      But it happens asynchronously so the board is not blocked.

  2. This is a masterpiece, thank you for your great work!
    We just found out this extension and it works like a charm.
    Our factory is already a big fan of these enhancements, and we’re using it on MSF Agile and Scrum projects.

    As a suggestion, would it be possible to add a filter to the product backlog board to visualize only stories / items from a specific sprint / iteration? That would make our team leaders work easier on large projects.

  3. Heya,
    This really helps us alot.
    Have you considered coloring bugs differently to product backlog items?

    A small bug: When I click choose hide done items, then change the person, the hidden items re-appear.

    • Coloring PBI/Bugs is not planned, however if the board has more than WI for the requirements (eg: PBI and BUGS) the WI type is going to be made explicit (pallned for next version).

      Thanks for the report, i’ve filled the bug so i can track it.

      Thanks

  4. This looks very interesting and I’d like to try it out – what license are you releasing it under?

  5. It works great – thanks a lot. Can I add a request for an expand/collapse all on the task board? Spent last week with my team doing a short proof of concept, 1 week scrum to get familiar with TFS and how to incorporate it into our organization, and that was one of the most requested features they thought was missing.

  6. This must be included in VS Update X :)
    Thanks, works great!

  7. Love the extension, thanks for building it.

    A suggestion for a new feature… It would be great if the board could show the different work item types in different colours. For instance on our board we show tasks and bugs and would be great for the bugs to be distinguishable.

    • Hopefully that will be possible in the next version (and user configurable so you can use any kinds of rules to define the coloring).

      Still working on the details. Don’t know it’s feasible though…

      Fingers crossed and no promises :-)

  8. Great extension, however, after TFS 2012 Update 2 it no longer works…

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