Friday, July 19, 2024

Research showcases how Microsoft Dev Field impacts developer productiveness

Research showcases how Microsoft Dev Field impacts developer productiveness

The necessity for innovation in native developer environments

If you happen to’ve been following our Microsoft Dev Field journey, you seemingly understand how dev-optimized digital desktop infrastructure (VDI) can rework at this time’s developer workstation. Conventional, bodily workstations are regularly hampered by advanced setting setup, misplaced productiveness from conflicting configurations, and a scarcity of scalability. Our objective in constructing Microsoft Dev Field was to beat these challenges by offering builders with self-service entry to preconfigured, project-based workstations—all whereas sustaining centralized administration and IT guardrails.

a group of people looking at a computer

Microsoft Dev Field

Cloud workstations constructed to assist key developer use instances

A 12 months out from Microsoft Dev Field common availability, the worth of a service like Microsoft Dev Field is changing into much more clear. At Microsoft, we’ve skilled firsthand the advantages of Microsoft Dev Field for the developer expertise, and we’re not alone. Ahead-thinking prospects like GM are additionally reworking their developer toolchain with Microsoft Dev Field. However we needed a rigorous, quantifiable view of how this cloud-based resolution stacks up with different growth environments.

On this weblog submit, we’ll check out the benchmark report Assessing Microsoft Dev Field Cloud-Primarily based Developer Workstations, performed by knowledgeable, impartial analysis agency GigaOm, to evaluation their findings. Learn on to learn the way Microsoft Dev Field compares to different dev workstations.

Takeaways from GigaOm’s research

Initially of the 12 months, GigaOm performed an intensive investigation of Microsoft Dev Field capabilities, together with a deep dive into efficiency configurations and discipline checks during which they deployed a brand new Microsoft Dev Field, constructed customized photos, and used Microsoft Visible Studio caching, and the outcomes converse for themselves.

There was little development within the administration, automation, or defining of extremely custom-made VDI options…till now. [Microsoft Dev Box] delivers vital profit over outfitting growth groups with conventional laptops or VDI-served stations.”


GigaOm’s hands-on-testing additional broke this takeaway down into three main findings:   

  1. Microsoft Dev Field considerably improved developer productiveness and diminished configuration time and IT overhead in comparison with VDI options.
  2. Developer typing expertise felt nearly as good as on a neighborhood machine—even over hotspot and public Wi-Fi.
  3. A Visible Studio-equipped Microsoft Dev Field setup produced higher efficiency with the pattern Chromium code base than VDI or native shoppers.

GigaOm’s testing matched what we’ve already seen by our personal dogfooding at Microsoft—that there’s a “robust worth proposition for using Microsoft Dev Field to extend productiveness.”

How Microsoft Dev Field will increase developer productiveness and boosts safety

Microsoft Dev Field offers worth to organizations in three key methods:

  1. Reworking the developer workstation expertise.
  2. Accelerating developer workflows by project-based configurations.
  3. Sustaining centralized safety and governance.

GigaOm’s Efficiency Benchmark validated every of those claims. Let’s take a more in-depth take a look at the capabilities in Microsoft Dev Field that ship these advantages and what GigaOm discovered within the outcomes of their testing.

1. Reworking the dev workstation expertise

Microsoft Dev Field basically transforms the dev workstation expertise by providing you with self-service, on-demand entry to your individual workstations. As a substitute of ready for IT assist, you may spin up a dev field occasion the place and while you want it on any gadget—which is crucial when developer agility is extra necessary than ever.

GigaOm’s take a look at outcomes with ready-to-code dev packing containers:

[With Microsoft Dev Box], developer typing expertise felt nearly as good as on a neighborhood machine, even over hotspot and public Wi-Fi, and is usable even on sluggish web connections. Microsoft Dev Field moreover presents an inherent profit to distant staff with sluggish or unreliable web, as massive supply information or growth environments don’t must be downloaded to your native gadget—growing, constructing, and testing purposes performs like you might be within the datacenter.”


GigaOm’s Efficiency Benchmark bolstered the worth of self-service, ready-to-code machines. When evaluating Microsoft Dev Field to a bodily gadget, the report discovered that “a completely automated Microsoft Dev Field deployment utilizing Azure VM Picture Builder and customizations for Microsoft Dev Field sharply reduces time on process.”

GigaOm stories that Microsoft Dev Field:

can slash the setup time for a brand new consumer from six or extra hours of configuration work, and probably days of delivery lag, to being ready-to-code in beneath an hour with all of the instruments, conditions, community entry, and the most recent supply code accessible by default.”

That may imply a whole lot or hundreds of hours throughout builders in your group specializing in what issues most: their code.

Time to Ready Code graphic
“Checks examine the setup time of Microsoft Dev Field to a brand new bodily gadget as soon as a developer receives it. We start by configuring a Dev Field from the default picture, the place the one built-in time financial savings is the pre-installation of Visible Studio. We then create a customized picture with our mission supply code and conditions built-in and measure the time financial savings potential with additional automation.” GigaOm1

2. Accelerating dev workflows with project-based configurations

With Microsoft Dev Field, you’re not restricted to a single configuration outlined by IT. As a substitute, Microsoft Dev Field provides you and your staff the power to take core elements from IT—like community configurations, base photos, and compute and storage configurations—and customise them additional with configuration-as-code information to create pre-configurations with all the pieces you want to your mission.

GigaOm expertise utilizing preconfigured, project-based dev packing containers:

[Deploying multiple Dev Boxes] considerably reduces the necessity for builders to repeatedly reconfigure their workstations to accommodate totally different project-specific configurations or to battle with the administration of native digital machines. With individualized Dev Packing containers, builders can seamlessly change between these remoted environments, enabling them to work on numerous tasks with numerous technical necessities with out encountering useful resource conflicts or efficiency degradation.” 


The advantages of standardized, project-based configurations turns into clear when mixed with developer self-service entry, as proven by the GigaOm report. The report emphasizes that Microsoft Dev Field will be configured with as much as 32 digital CPU (vCPU), 128 GB of RAM, and a couple of TB of storage, “far exceeding the capabilities of almost each laptop computer available on the market.”

But much more considerably, Microsoft Dev Field offers you with the flexibleness to pair totally different storage and compute choices with totally different mission configurations. GigaOm stories that “you may carry over the identical ready-to-code configuration from smaller Dev Packing containers to a brand new machine. This may be beneficial if you have to iterate rapidly on a mission-critical replace or hotfix.”

This flexibility of configurations helps account for 64% sooner software program construct instances utilizing Microsoft Dev Field than a median-spec bodily gadget, as proven within the following graph:

Microsoft Dev Box versus Physical Device: Time to Build graphic
“Whereas not one-to-one comparability, every bodily CPU core with hyperthreading enabled is roughly comparable to 2 vCPUs that may be assigned to a digital machine by the hypervisor. Subsequently, a 4-core bodily gadget with hyperthreading offers comparable efficiency to a Dev Field with 8 vCPU cores.” GigaOm1

3. Sustaining centralized safety and administration

Importantly, Microsoft Dev Field delivers these advantages with out impacting admin workflows or decreasing centralized administration and governance. IT admins present the core elements that go into making Microsoft Dev Field configurations, that means they finally management permissions, entry controls, and community connections. And since Microsoft Dev Field is managed by Microsoft Intune, IT admins preserve centralized visibility of Microsoft Dev Field situations as soon as deployed—no matter the place they’re working.

GigaOm on Microsoft Dev Field safety and administration:

[With Dev Box], directors have complete management over the safety and administration of the cloud-based developer workstations their builders deploy by Microsoft Intune.”


GigaOm highlights the significance of this management, emphasizing:

As a substitute of granting entry to delicate firm knowledge on exterior gadgets past the organizations’ direct management, [Microsoft Dev Box] digital desktops allow a safer strategy. Contractors and distributors entry a digital desktop inside the group’s community, that means delicate knowledge stays inside the firm’s safe setting. This centralized strategy permits for stricter management, monitoring, and administration of entry, decreasing the chance of knowledge breaches or unauthorized use.”  


Reworking the dev expertise of at this time—and tomorrow

The GigaOm report concludes that with Microsoft Dev Field, organizations can “obtain large enhancements in developer productiveness, innovation velocity, and discount of logistics and bodily gadget administration.”

Having already deployed Microsoft Dev Field throughout a whole lot of groups and hundreds of builders inside Microsoft over the previous 12 months, I can say these outcomes aren’t altogether stunning—however they’re undoubtedly encouraging. These numbers assist what we’re already seeing at Microsoft, nevertheless it’s necessary to recollect that is simply the beginning. We’re persevering with to innovate with Microsoft Dev Field, and as we do, the impression it has on bettering the developer expertise will solely enhance. We’ve received an thrilling horizon for Microsoft Dev Field, and we are able to’t wait to share extra with you.

Get began with Microsoft Dev Field

If you happen to’re curious to study extra:

To see what Microsoft Dev Field can do to your staff:

If you happen to’ve already began utilizing Microsoft Dev Field, we’d love to listen to what you suppose. Please submit any suggestions you may have so we are able to proceed making Microsoft Dev Field the best choice for developer productiveness.

1 Efficiency declare primarily based on knowledge from a research commissioned by Microsoft and printed by GigaOm in January 2024. Efficiency outcomes are primarily based upon the configurations detailed within the GigaOm Efficiency Benchmark. Precise outcomes and costs might range primarily based on configuration and area.

2 To make use of Microsoft Dev Field, every consumer have to be licensed for Home windows 11 Enterprise or Home windows 10 Enterprise, Microsoft Endpoint Supervisor, and Microsoft Entra ID P1 (previously Azure Lively Listing P1). Along with being accessible independently, these licenses are included in Microsoft 365 F3, Microsoft 365 E3, Microsoft 365 E5, Microsoft 365 A3, Microsoft 365 A5, Microsoft 365 Enterprise Premium, and Microsoft 365 Schooling Scholar Use Profit subscriptions.

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