At TechEd 2004 in San Diego, Microsoft thrust Visual Studio fully into the enterprise development space by introducing the newest version, Visual Studio 2005 Team System. Like previous versions, this product supports application development in any of the .NET languages, including Visual Basic .NET (VB.NET), C#, J#, and C++. But Microsoft has added several enterprise-oriented team development and project-management features to put the product on par with any enterprise-level development tool. Microsoft plans to release Team System when it releases single-user editions of Visual Studio 2005 in mid-2005. (You can find out more about Team System at Here are Visual Studio 2005 Team System's five most important enterprise-oriented features.

Deployment and Operations

Formerly code-named Whitehorse, the new Distributed Systems Designer helps system architects build a logical representation of their physical environment. You can use this feature to check an application's code against the policies that define your environment and to pinpoint inconsistencies and possible errors before deploying the code.

Project Management

Built on top of Windows SharePoint Services, Team System sports an integrated project-management system that stores project work items—requirements, features, tasks, bugs, and risks—in a server-side database. You can share the database with your development team members and integrate it with end-user tools such as Microsoft Project and Excel.

Extended Source Control

Say goodbye to Visual SourceSafe and its difficulties coping with more than 5 to 10 users. Visual Studio 2005 Team System introduces an entirely new version-control system, Visual Studio 2005 Team Foundation, that's scalable to hundreds of developers.

Deep Code Checking

More sophisticated than a lint-level source-code check, Visual Studio 2005 Team Test is a new code-analysis feature. Team Test integrates with your compiler and can check your code for buffer overruns, improper naming conventions, security-related errors, and other common coding defects. You can link analysis to your check-in process and prohibit the check-in of code that doesn't meet established standards.

Test Generation and Display

The best new feature in Visual Studio 2005 Team System is its ability to automatically generate unit tests. (For more information about why and how to unit-test, see Dan Sawyer's articles "Unit-Test Your Stored Procedures," February 2003, InstantDoc ID 37428, and "Integration Testing," page 25, InstantDoc ID 43714.) This Team Test feature graphically displays which sections of code have been tested and which haven't. This capability alone will result in significant code-quality improvement.