Microsoft began offering this week an ALM (application lifecycle management) process template geared to the Scrum agile development methodology. Visual Studio Scrum 1.0 works with the company's Team Foundation Server 2010 ALM server and can be downloaded from the Visual Studio Extension Manager. A process template features a collection of files that define process elements of a team project on Team Foundation Server. It includes definitions of team work items, queries, builds, reports and SharePoint portal capabilities.
Microsoft on its download site describes Scrum "an iterative, incremental framework for project management and agile software development."
"So, why a new template? Scrum has become one of the dominant project management methodologies in recent years and is quickly becoming a default choice for new teams as well as teams looking to improve their existing processes," said S. Somasegar, senior vice president of the Microsoft Developer Division, in a blog post. "While the MSF Agile template can be used effectively by Scrum teams, we found that there was strong demand for a prescriptive Scrum template, a template that follows the Scrum methodology from top to bottom that uses Scrum terminology throughout."
Artifacts defined in Visual Studio Scrum 1.0 include work items, such as sprint and task, and reports, such as release burndown and velocity. "This template was built specifically for Scrum teams. We recognise that it won't meet every team's needs, but we didn't want to fall into the trap of 'one size fits all' and miss the mark," Somasegar said.
The template is the first process template from Microsoft since MSF Agile and MSF CMMI templates shipped with Team Foundation Server 2005. Microsoft previously had offered the template in a beta stage of release.
In 2007, Microsoft had offered a tool to track Scrum projects.