Microsoft offers with Visual Studio Lab Management a platform to administrate virtual test environments. It is possible to reset the test environments to a defined state by reverting it to a snapshot at the build process and start a deployment process for tests.

The out of the box Lab Management which comes with Team Foundation Server however requires Hyper-V as virtualization platform. With the open source project Lab Management for VMware® the integration in TFS Build also works with VMware® virtualization. The package consist a set of workflow activities, a standard build workflow and an editor to define the necessary parameters in a comfortable way.

With Lab Management for VMware® you can model following scenarios:
  • Defining test environment with any number of virtual machines
  • Reset to a snapshot of all virtual machines of a test environment, to create constant starting conditions
  • Automatic deployment in a test environment
  • Automatic execution of test cases and unit tests (MS test)
  • Test- and build reports

You can use Lab Management for VMware® with your existing VMware® infrastructure. The virtualization host must not be adjusted. And so is Lab Management for VMware® working:


The TFS build workflow communicates with the VMware® Host to reset the environment to an configured snapshot or start the virtual machine. The TFS build agent will be used to run deployment scripts on one or more virtual Machine which allows to execute the deployment local on the test machine. Afterwards, the automated tests will be executed with the test agent.

To simplify the configuration of the whole process there is a configuration wizard in Lab Management for VMware®. As precondition you have to set up a virtual machine on the VMware® Host. On this virtual machine the necessary agents have to be installed and a snapshot must be created. Then you can start setting up your Build-Deploy-Test build.
Here are the configuration steps:

If you select the VMWareLabDefaultTemplate for your build definition, you can setup the parameters. For the detailed configuration please open the configuration wizard.

On the overview every single configuration step will be described.

After the input of the connection parameter and the connection to VMware® host you can select the virtual machine and the related snapshot.

Thereafter select a build which was used for creating the application, which will be tested.

In this dialog a deployment can be defined for every virtual machine. By requesting a snapshot, it will be created automatically each time the deployment has been executed.

In the end the test must be configured. The user has the choice between a selection of test cases via a test plan or the specification of test assemblies which contains automatic test.

After the execution of the build you will get a build log with information about the tests. The results will be stored at TFS and are available for reporting and analyses.

Last edited Jun 5, 2012 at 10:07 PM by TSchissler, version 16