Test lab extensions describe how to configure additional functionality or advanced or uncommon configurations based on a modular Test Lab Guide (TLG). Test lab extensions are a content type in the Test Lab Guides content set. You can create your own test lab extension and publish it in the TechNet Wiki, the TechNet Gallery, or in your own publication venue.

A test lab extension includes instructions to do the following:

  • Configure the working test lab for the new functionality.  This can include adding servers, running setup wizards again, or using configuration tools to modify the modular test lab configuration to show something new.
  • Demonstrate the additional functionality.  If possible, show a clear cause and effect between the original functionality of the modular test lab and the new functionality
  • Manually restore the test lab to its original configuration. Although we anticipate that most TLG operators out there will use virtualization to revert to an initial configuration, some might use physical hardware or a combination of physical and virtual machines. Therefore, is important to include the steps to get the computers back to their original state.

This article describes the process for creating and publishing a test lab extension.

End-to-end process for creating and publishing a test lab extension

  1. Determine if the type of TLG content you want to publish is a test lab extension, a modular TLG, or a TLG mini-module. See Wiki: Creating and Publishing Test Lab Guide Content for more information on these TLG content types.
  2. If a test lab extension is the right type of content, determine the starting test lab configuration. Typical test lab extension start with a product or feature already configured, corresponding to an existing TLG. You will need to reference this TLG in your test lab extension instructions.
  3. Determine the functionality that are you going to demonstrate. For example, is there something that you want to show off, such as a favorite feature, or something that you have discovered?
  4. Outline the steps and procedures in your test lab extension to configure and then demonstrate the desired feature.
  5. Build out the starting configuration test lab, using the appropriate set of TLGs, and then snapshot this configuration.
  6. Begin constructing your test lab extension. To help with this, use the Wiki: Test Lab Extension Template as a starting point. If you use this template, your test lab extension will have the same structure and boilerplate text as other test lab extensions, allowing the readers of your test lab extension to more quickly configure your test lab.
  7. Configure the test lab for the desired feature and demonstrate its functionality, documenting your steps and procedures as you go.
  8. When complete, restore the snapshots from step 4 and follow your documented steps to ensure that it works, refining your steps and procedures as needed. Repeat this step until your instructions and the desired test lab configuration results are solid and reproducible. If possible, hand your instructions to another person to follow and see if they are also successful.
  9. Add a TLG stack diagram to your test lab extension. This will show the set of TLGs that are needed and their order, with your new test lab extension at the top of the stack. For more information, see Wiki: Creating a TLG stack diagram.
  10. Add a TLG lab diagram to your test lab extension. This will show the set of computers and their connections to the test lab network. If your test lab extension does not add computers or subnets, you can use the TLG lab diagram from the TLG corresponding to your starting lab configuration. For more information, see Wiki: Creating a TLG lab diagram.
  11. Add helpful links to your test lab extension. Examples include links to evaluation versions of software, product or feature overview information, where to go to get help (such as online forums), and where to get information on additional or related TLG content (such as a TLG portal page).
  12. Publish your test lab extension. You can publish this in the TechNet Wiki (web article), the TechNet Gallery (white paper format), or in your own publication venue.
  13. Add a link to your test lab extension to the main Test Lab Guides portal page.
  14. Send a quick email to tlgfb@microsoft.com so that your new test lab extension can be announced in the Test Lab Guides blog.
  15. Advertise your new creation in your own social media outlets.

Example:

For more information, see Wiki: Creating and publishing Test Lab Guide content.