A (Visual Studio ALM Glossary)

This glossary defines key terms that are used in the Visual Studio Application Lifecycle Management (ALM) Help.


The query value macro that is replaced by the user name of the current logged-on user.


The query value macro that is replaced by the name of the currently selected Team Foundation Project.


The query value macro that is replaced by the value of system date on the workstation that is running the application.

acceptance criteria

The criteria that a product or product component must satisfy to be accepted by a user, customer, or other authorized entity.

acceptance testing

Formal testing conducted to enable a user, customer, or other authorized entity to determine whether to accept a product or product component.

action recording

A file in which the user’s input and actions in one or many applications for each step in a test are recorded. You can then play back this action recording to automatically run specific test steps.

action recording section

A part of an action recording that is based on the steps that you mark as passed or failed in a test. Each time that you mark the outcome of a test step, a new section of the action recording is created.


A pattern of work performed together for a single purpose. An activity may use or produce work products and may be tracked by a work item.


A disfavored persona or persona with the objective of gaining access to an asset. Examples of adversaries include hackers.

Agile Methods

A family of engineering best processes with a goal of enabling rapid delivery of high-quality software and a business approach that aligns development with customer needs and company goals. In this paradigm, frequent inspection and adaptation is necessary, with teamwork, self-organization, and accountability all critical to project success.


A rule or procedure for solving a problem.

alpha version

A very early release of a product to get preliminary feedback about the feature set and usability.


In conceptual design, the breaking down and examination of business and user information into use cases and scenarios documenting work processes. In logical design, the identification of services, objects, attributes, and relationships from scenarios. In physical design, the examination of physical constraints of the infrastructure and the physical requirements of the application to select candidate implementation technologies and to draft a preliminary deployment model.

application diagram

The definition and configuration of applications that will be composed into systems for deployment. The application diagram shows the communication dependencies exposed through endpoints in a graphical layout prior to committing to code.

application exclusive time

Time spent in function to kernel mode and Performance Tools probes, excluding time spent in items it calls and excluding time spent in transitions.

application inclusive time

Time spent in function and items it calls, excluding time spent in transitions to kernel mode and Performance Tools probes.

application lifecycle management

The coordination of the requirements, design, development, building, testing, and releasing of application software. This requires integrating software processes, defining relationships between work products to enable traceability, and project management and reporting across all activities and stages.


A node on the Common Structure Services hierarchy that represents a feature area. See Also: Common Structure Services


A type of software product documentation that includes specifications and testing plans. In the case of text templates, artifacts can also include generated text output.


The abstract or concrete resources that a system must protect from misuse by an adversary.

assign a test

1) Associate a test with a work item that is already associated with a person. 2) Assign a test to an agent computer during a test run.

attachment link

A Team Foundation link between a work item and a file attachment.


In CMMI process-improvement work, an independent examination of a work product or set of work products to determine whether requirements are being met.

author a test

Create a test via a test type and manage it in Visual Studio Application Lifecycle Management (ALM).

automated test

A set of steps that a computer may run programmatically to test the functionality of the system.

Community Additions