Thursday, 25 July 2013

Microsoft Certification 70-497 Software Testing with Visual Studio 2012

Problem: Passing Microsoft Certification 70-497 Software Testing with Visual Studio 2012

There is many opinions about test certifications, and I am not going into pros and cons here. I have a few certifications myself, and common for those I have is that they helped me formalize my knowledge – Something that I can only recommend, no matter how you do it.

I have been working with Microsoft Test Manager (MTM) & Visual Studio for the past year, so now it is time to get the certification and formalize my knowledge about the tools in the MS toolbox.

Solution: Study for the exam and use real work as excises to anchor learning.  

Now that sounds easy enough, but especially the study part might require some explaining, as Microsoft Learning really does not offer much help on the preparation materials for 70-497 – Luckilly, googling seems to be the answer to everything, as I came across this great resource at Channel9.

This is how I prepared myself for the exam:
  • I watched the Channel9 videos – Approximately 6 hours of video with great educational value, not to mention fun as the presenters are really great!
  • I Browsed Microsoft Developer Network for instructions on how to use MTM & Visual Studio.
  • I download the book Testing for Continuous Delivery with Visual Studio 2012 – Good source of information for putting theory into practice.
  • I practiced all the topics in MTM, using the book as reference and the Channel9 video demos for inspiration. For exercising, I used one of our current projects as case and started creating test plans, settings and cases as detailed in the above materials. This took me all the way around the topics.

Tips that I found useful:
  • Practice, practice, practice – In my book seeing is believing; so when you go do the exercises in MTM you will remember how it works at the exam.
  • Know the relationship between plans, cases, requirements, configurations etc. This is central, so is the test lifecycle, and activities that must be executed in Test Manager and Visual Studio.

What I learned from completing the certification:
  • MTM has several features that can accelerate manual testing – The Fast Forward feature is one that was new to me.
  • There is a test suite type for everything – Previously I always just used Static or Requirement Suites, but it seems that Query based suites will move into my plans in the future.
  • All the little details I missed when just learning on the job – I know those now, and will use them in the future when testing

Have a nice day & Happy testing!


  1. I have been thinking about doing a Microsoft boot camp to get a certification myself so I appreciate the additional tips on study tools and aids that I can also use to help my successful completion.

    1. The Channel9 videos are really great. If I was you I would book the examn and watch the videos before that - If you fail then redo the examn 2 weeks after, leaving lots of time for study and practice.

      Remember the second shot offer that gives you 2 exams at the Price of one - Giving you a practice run for free.

      Good luck with the examn & Happy testing!


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  3. Great round up. I've been prepping myself using the same materials you described. Plus those videos are now on Microsoft Virtual Academy. Apart from those resources it's hard to find any extra learning materials: study guides, exam guides etc.

    What would be doubly nice would be the ability to create a demo system to practice along with the videos for those who wouldn't have all or some of the tools/features. E.g. creating virtual environments and machines.

    I'm doing the certification for the same reasons as you said, to bolster my knowledge of the tools and processes that I'm already using at work. Good luck to everyone going for this cert as well as the others in the ALM track.

  4. I am very impress to this post Its very useful for me.

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  5. I don't need to think about other sources if I have RealExamDumps for preparation of my exam. It saved a lot of my time. Microsoft 70-497 exam dumps study guide provided on the site guided me through the preparation and I aced the paper.