Congratulations Nick Hauenstein – Newly minted Microsoft MVP

By Anthony Borton


I have been an MVP for the past 9 years and have met some very passionate and talented individuals during that time. It is important to remember that the MVP Award is not a technical award – it is an acknowledgement of the work an individual does for the community over the previous 12 months. Having said that, it is usually very technically knowledgeable  people with a passion to share their knowledge that earn the MVP award.

My friend and colleague, Nick Hauenstein, has all the attributes that qualify him for this award. He is amazingly knowledgeable across many technologies including BizTalk, TFS/ALM and software development in general. He is passionate about sharing that knowledge with anyone wanting to learn. He is a committed and caring individual that cares about communities – both technical and non-technical.

Nick will be at these upcoming events. If you happen to bump into him, be sure to congratulate him on his award and ask him anything about BizTalk/TFS that you’ve ever wanted to know. You’ll soon learn that Nick is the ideal recipient of the Microsoft MVP Award.

  • BizTalk Summit 2015 – London
  • Microsoft Build Conference
  • ALM Forum 2015 – Seattle

Some exciting changes coming to our TFS courses

By Anthony Borton

One of the things that really helps set QuickLearn apart from our competitors is the fact our TFS courseware is being continually updated to ensure it is as current as possible.

With Microsoft releasing quarterly updates for Visual Studio and Team Foundation Server, you want to make sure you don’t miss out on any new or improved features that could make your job easier.

We also review the structure of our courses to ensure they are a great fit for the market and sometimes that means we change existing courses and sometimes it means we develop brand new courses.

Here are a list of changes that will take place over the next few months.

1. Merging and refining our offering for Team Leaders, Project Managers and Scrum Masters.

Our 2-day Managing Projects with Microsoft Visual Studio TFS 2013 course is being merged with our 3-day Applied Scrum Using Visual Studio 2013 course to become Managing Agile Projects using Visual Studio TFS 2015 (3-days).

2. Expanding our TFS Administration and Configuration offering

To help keep up with all the changes and to allow us to add more hands-on-lab exercises, we’re expanding our TFS 2013 Configuration & Administration course from 3-days to a 4-day course for TFS 2015. You’ll see this change occurring from July 1st, 2015.

3. An improved offering for DevOps training

Our Build, Release, and Monitor Software Using Visual Studio 2013 course is being replaced with a new DevOps using Visual Studio ALM 2015 course from July 1st, 2015. This has been revamped to offer a broader range of topics and some great new hands-on-labs exercises. Want to know about the new Build features? Perhaps you’re trying to get your head around Desired State Configuration (DSC)?

4. DeveloperS – choose Git or Team Foundation Version Control

Our TFS 2013 Developer Fundamentals course has always focused on Team Foundation Version Control in the past. The market has asked us for something to help them if they are using Git for their version control and we’ve got a solution.

Our TFS 2013 Developer Fundamentals is now available in two different flavors for the 2015 release. Simply choose the course corresponding to the version control provider you and your team are using.

  • TFS 2015 Developer Fundamentals – TFVC  (2-days)
  • TFS 2015 Developer Fundamentals – Git (2-days)

5. Developer Enterprise Features – NEW

Microsoft has long offered a tiered pricing/feature model for Visual Studio with versions ranging from Professional up to Ultimate. Often development teams continue to use just the “standard” Visual Studio capabilities and don’t take advantage of some of the great productivity features available in the higher level editions.

Starting with the 2015 release, we’re offering a brand new course “Visual Studio 2015 Enterprise Features” (2-days) which will focus in on the features only found in the higher level editions. Many of these features offer huge benefits to teams or enterprise developers and we want to make sure you’re using them to achieve your optimum productivity.

This new course hits the public calendar in the second half of 2015.

Visit quicklearn at the alm forum May 18-22, 2015

By Anthony Borton


The ALM Forum is moving to a new venue this year. The Bell Harbor Conference Center at Pier 66 on the Seattle waterfront plays host to a great line up of workshops, keynotes and breakout sessions. In previous years the event has been on the Microsoft Campus and most recently at the Washington State Convention Center.

QuickLearn is pleased to once again be a gold sponsor of the ALM Forum. It is the perfect place for all ALM practitioners and managers to come together and learn from the best in the industry. We’ll have a number of our experts manning the QuickLearn booth over the 3 main days of the conference so drop by and say hello.

This years event also introduces a new track to the program.

  1. Process of Software Development (NEW)
  2. Business of Software Delivery
  3. Principles and Practices of DevOps

Lastly, don’t forget that in addition to the three main days of the conference, there are also some great pre-conference and post-conference workshops you can sign up for.

TFS/ALM Pre-conference Workshop

QuickLearn’s lead ALM trainer and curriculum developer, Anthony Borton, will be presenting an updated version of his popular pre-conference workshop titled “Enhance your Application Lifecycle using Visual Studio Online and TFS”. If you’re planning on attending the ALM Forum make sure you look at his workshop and sign up if it sounds interesting for you. At just $495 for a full day of cutting edge, hands-on technical training, it is great value!

Exam 70-499 MCSD:ALM Recertification exam prep

By Anthony Borton

To keep the Microsoft Certified Solution Developer: Application Lifecycle Management (MCSD:ALM) certification current you must complete a recertification exam every two years. Since the release of the MCSD:ALM certification, many of our students have taken our TFS courses to help them prepare for the exams.

As the two year recertification deadline starts to arrive,  early charter exam members are facing the task of preparing for the recertification exam. Here are some helpful resources to help you focus your study.

If you do not currently hold the MCSD:ALM certification, you will be required to complete three exams to earn this certification. QuickLearn Training offers great instructor led courses to help you prepare for these exams.

Guest presenter during Build, Release and Monitor course

By Anthony Borton

During the first run of our new Build, Release and Monitor software with Visual Studio 2013 course this week we had a special guest presenter for the topics of Application Insights and Cloud Load Testing.

A big thanks to Chuck Sterling for providing not only an informative session but an entertaining one as well. I expected nothing else  :)

Charles Sterling

The course was a huge success and will be a regular part of our TFS 2013 schedule. Check when this course is running next.

Here’s a couple of comments from students on this course.

“Excellent instructor. I’m appreciative of the real world stories and helpful tips on additional reading material on MS-Build.” ~ Reza

“Very knowledgeable, very willing to answer questions and explain. Very patient. In many of these online courses, I fight to stay focused but Anthony kept my full attention throughout the course. ” ~ Lana

Student feedback and the 70-496 Exam

By Anthony Borton

As the TFS courseware author and lead ALM trainer for QuickLearn, I work hard to try to make sure our eight TFS 2013 courses are best of breed. Students who attend our training are often doing so not only for the skills and knowledge to help them do their job more efficiently, but quite a few are also attending the course as preparation for the Microsoft ALM Certification.

This morning I opened my inbox to find the following email from a student I had on one of our courses two weeks ago.

To Anthony Borton and the QuickLearn Team

I took exam 70-496 today and passed.  This was due to your excellent coverage of the myriad of detail required for TFS Administration and use.  I recommend your courses to all who wish to be successful with TFS.

Thank you!

Tom Williams

While I am in this profession because of my passion for helping people succeed, getting this feedback is also very rewarding.

Thanks for letting us know how you got on with the exam Tom and congratulations on passing the exam. I hope to see you again when you’re studying for the next exam.



two new tfs 2013 courses now available

By Anthony Borton

Two exciting new courses added to our TFS 2013 curriculum

QuickLearn Training is expanding its TFS Curriculum with two new courses being added to our range. With both the most up-to-date and comprehensive TFS curriculum, you know you’re in good hands when you book on one of our courses.

Build, Release, and Monitor Software Using Visual Studio 2013

This new 3 day introductory level course is focuses on the following components of Visual Studio 2013;

  • Team Build
  • Release Management for Visual Studio 2013
  • Application Insights

As the title says, if you want to improve the way you build, release and monitor your applications, this is the course for you. Like all of our courses, you can attend this training on our public schedule or we can run it onsite for you.

Download full outline (PDF) | View TFS 2013 course dates

Applied Scrum Using Visual Studio 2013

Achieving success in your software development projects requires understanding of both your development tools and processes. This 3 day course aims to help address both of these by teaching you the Scrum Framework and how to apply it using the Visual Studio 2013 product at the same time. This course is ideal for getting your entire team pointing in the same direction and using Visual Studio as effectively as possible. Bring us onsite now to deliver this exciting new course.

Download full outline (PDF) | View TFS 2013 course dates

See us and win at the ALM Forum Seattle 2014

By Anthony Borton

QuickLearn is committed to the ALM community and have signed up as Gold Sponsors for the upcoming ALM Forum Seattle 2014.



You can win a free ticket (valued at $ 1,895) to the ALM Forum Seattle on 1st-3rd April 2014. We have two free tickets to give away to lucky readers of our newsletter. We’ll be announcing details on how to enter the draw in our newsletter. If you’re not a subscriber, you can sign up from our community page.


Come and see us at our booth and learn about the world’s most comprehensive TFS training curriculum. We’ll have two of our TFS trainers available to discuss your training requirements. You can also go into the draw from some great prizes including the Lenovo 64Gb Thinkpad 8 Tablet. This amazing device was a true standout at the CES conference in Las Vegas earlier this year!


Our new TFS 2013 training curriculum kicks off on Jan 27th

By Anthony Borton

Since the official release of Visual Studio Team Foundation Server 2013 in November we’ve been testing our newest course updates and we’re pleased to be launching our new 2013 courses at the end of this month.

If you either working with, or thinking of working with Microsoft’s latest release then you should take a look at the following courses.

  • Jan 27-29  TFS 2013 Configuration and Administration
  • Jan 30-31  TFS 2013 Developer Fundamentals
  • Feb 3-7  ALM Solutions using Visual Studio TFS 2013
  • Feb 10-11  Managing Projects with Visual Studio TFS 2013
  • Feb 12-14  Software Testing with Visual Studio 2013

You can find out more and register for these course on our dedicated TFS 2013 page.

We’re also planning on releasing an additional three TFS 2013 related courses in the coming months.

attend our 1-day pre-conference WORKSHOP at the alm forum in April 2014

By Anthony Borton

QuickLearn’s lead ALM instructor and curriculum author, Anthony Borton, will be presenting a one day hands-on pre-conference workshop at the ALM Forum in Seattle in April 2014.

The ALM Forum (previously ALM Summit) is a three day event focusing on all things ALM. There is an awesome cast of speakers lined up for this year including keynotes from  Scott Ambler, Steve Denning and Ken Schwaber. James Whittaker and Dave West are delivering plenary sessions as well.

The details of the pre-conference workshop are as follows.

TITLE: Managing your Application Lifecycle with TFS

DATE: Monday, March 31st 2014. (Day before conference)


As a member of an Agile development team, you want to learn the best practices for setting up a new project on Team Foundation Server, so that your team can get the best possible start for delivering better software, more frequently.

In this workshop, attendees will start by setting up a brand new Team Project on TFS 2013 and then proceed to configure everything required to get their team ready for their first iteration.

Some of the key topics include:

  • Entering our requirements and setting up our portfolio backlog
  • Configuring our two teams with independent backlogs and taskboards
  • Introducing the team members to the appropriate tools for their role
  • Fostering collaboration using Team Rooms and adding users and events
  • Preparing version control for our developers to get started
  • Getting QA ready to kick off with their first test plan
  • Leveraging the out of the box reports and creating ad-hoc reports

To find out more or to register visit the workshop page.

To find out more about the ALM Forum Seattle 2014, visit