The only source of knowledge is experience

About me

Hi, my name is Marcel and I spend most of my time helping organizations build Cloud Native Software and transform organizations towards a High-Performance IT Organization. I co-founded a consulting and software development company called Xpirit and my job title there is Chief Technical Manager (CTO). As a CTO I spend most of my time looking at how new emerging technologies can help organizations build better quality software and do this in a more productive way. I have a passion for learning new technologies and teaching the things he learned when applying technology to solve business problems. I write articles and give talks at conferences on .NET, DevOps, Architecture, Cloud Native Software Development, and Mobile app development. I am awarded by Microsoft with the Microsoft ALM MVP award and a Microsoft Regional Director.


  1. Mukul Bhatt

    I work with KPMG LLP in US (New Jersey). We are interested in having you for on site training about coded UI. Can you please email me your contact information?


  2. Stephanie

    Hi Marcel,

    I just submitted a reply thanking you for a post you wrote over at InfoSupport back in 2007. I couldn’t reply to that post and thank you, so I’m visiting your new blog (congrats) to thank you properly.

    In the hopes this helps someone else, I’ll include the details. I realize none of this is relevant to the blog you run now, but I wanted to thank you and put this out there. So do with my writing here what you will:)

    My system specifics:
    Machine: Dell Latitude D620 Laptop
    OS: Windows 7 32-bit
    Display Adapter: Nvidia Quadro NVS 110M
    Original Display Adapter Driver Provider: NVIDIA
    Original Display Adapter Driver Version:
    Original Display Adapter Driver Release Date: 3/6/2009
    Problem: Random screen/system blackouts (a few seconds), then it recovers and looks normal.
    Message: “Display Driver Not Responding, But Has Recovered”
    Seemingly Unassociated Problem: CPU & Motherboard Temperatures 60-degrees or more – ALL THE TIME – under all conditions – except when turned off.

    The problem with my screen “blacking out” and recovering randomly started about a week ago and has been worsening ever since. Today it happened probably 5 or 6 times in under 2 hours! The last time it happened was so bad that after it recovered, many web pages and even my desktop had areas of fuzzy, black, horizontal lines, so I knew the problem was bad. I started searching and found many, many similar situations/posts and “solutions” but they either weren’t for my system or they just plain didn’t work. I also tried installing and running Microsoft’s “Fix It For Me” program. That didn’t work either.

    I went to Nvidia’s site and Dell’s site. Nothing there, but Nvidia’s official line on the one driver I did find for my display adapter was it is “not compatible with Dell Latitude” and Dell’s official line is that the Latitude D620 is not compatible with Windows 7. Needless to say I was hitting a lot of brick walls.

    But from everything I’ve read, and with so many people running Windows 7 on the D620, it seems it’s not so much the OS that isn’t compatible, but rather a few specific drivers, that are the problem.

    So, after many hours and a lot of frustration, I took a break, came back and tried again. That’s when I found your post. I followed the link to the driver you recommended (which is still active, btw), then here is what I did (and it worked for me:):

    New driver information:
    Driver Provider: NVIDIA
    Driver Version:
    Driver Release Date: 6/15/2007

    1. Downloaded to my Downloads folder (did NOT click Run)
    2. Right-clicked on the file
    3. Clicked “Troubleshoot Compatibility”.
    a. I’m not sure what this is or does exactly, but I followed the prompts and it ended up settling on Windows Vista (?). It originally tried to settle on Win XP, but that didn’t work. So, it settled on Windows Vista and installed just fine.
    4. It then had to Restart to finish the installation.
    a. At this point the resolution looked off and I was worried it wasn’t going to work, but I let it continue.
    5. It actually had to Restart TWICE to finish the installation.
    a. At this point the resolution was back to normal and all was well.

    As of now, everything looks great and my system is running perfectly. It’s been over an hour since the install and it hasn’t glitched or blacked out at all, not even ONCE!!! 

    And, this may just be a HUGE coincidence, but: my CPU and motherboard temperatures have normalized. For the first time since I’ve owned this machine, the bottom of my laptop is not an oven! It used to get so hot, under completely normal, low-impact, use that I was certain the whole machine was just going to keel over and quit.

    Since the new (old) display driver has been installed, I can actually work with my laptop on my lap and not have to hold it sideways or stand it up vertically to give the bottom some air!! I’m not sure if this is from this new (old) driver, but I’m extremely pleased.

    Whoever thought going backwards could put you ahead in the technology game?

    So, Marcel, wherever you are and whatever you’re doing now, thank you thank you thank you for giving my favorite old clunker a little more time.

    Have a great day.

  3. Chris Weiner

    Hello just wanted to send a reply thanking you for you Pluralsight training’s they have been beyond valuable for starting the learning process for all the functions of automated UI testing. I am currently a student as well as an Intern and have been put lead on automating the companies QA division. We are currently starting from scratch as far as automation goes and have made quite a bit of progress over the past few weeks converting our manual tests to automated. However there have been quite a few roadblocks one large one being our use of Telerik which leaves a lot of the websites functions properties very generic.. So as you can imagine searching for them through VS is difficult sometimes even with the embedded record functions. Do you have any other sources for learning outside of PluralSight and/or any ideas where I might find additional resources? Or even any tips or tricks that might be useful to someone just getting started with the process would be greatly appreciated. Thank you again for what you already have out there it is extremely beneficial for someone just getting started with automation.

    Thanks for your time,
    Lincoln, NE

  4. Toni

    Hi Marcel,
    I attended your presentation on Feature Toggles at VSLive 2018 Vegas. In that session, you were asked about database schema changes, and you listed four steps. Can you reiterate those, please?

    • Marcel

      Sure, First create and deploy binaries that understand multiple schema. Then deploy your schema change (preferably creating new tables to avoid exclusive lock on table when changing the schema). Then migrate the data (slowly, so you don’t generate a denial of service on your own DB). Then clean up the old schema and finally deploy new binaries for your latest schema.

      Hope that helps.

  5. Douglas Dias


    First of all, congratulations! Your courses on PluralSight are awesome. Thank you.

    I’d like to ask one thing about the release branch on Git Flow. In your demonstration “Git Flow in action”, you create a release, and then finish it pushing the release on the master. But, what if i’d like to ask for a validation to the user in that release? According the git flow model, there’s no release branch on TFS, so it’s not possible to configurate a automatic build/release for every release.

    Today, in my organization, we have three enviroments: dev, homolog and production. Now we are migrating to Agile, and one steps to put software in production is a mandatory validation, in a meeting, at the end of the sprint. So the first idea was have the release available to be accessed in that meeting.

    Thanks in advance! All the best!

    • Marcel

      As for the first part you can set a branch policy on the master branch that a pul request is required for the merge and then get the approval via the pull request.
      For the second part you can use feature toggles. you move everything to production all the time, but on approval you flip the switch and things are live.
      Hope that helps.

  6. David

    Hey Marcel,

    Had a question about an issue I’ve been having for the past few days trying to get a proof of concept working for my boss.

    Just started implementing a coded ui test automation solution but keep running into an issue when starting the application.

    The application seems to start just fine but no matter what I always get an exception stating:

    Microsoft.VisualStudio.TestTools.UITest.Extension.FailedToLaunchApplicationException: “The application cannot be started. This could be due to one of the following reasons: 1) Another instance of the application is already running and only one instance can be running at a time. 2) The application started another process and has now stopped. You may need to launch the process directly. 3) You do not have sufficient privileges for this application.”

    I get the exception even when the application (which is wpf by the way) clearly starts up.

    The application is a little strange as it currently is setup to run off of a setup.exe so the user always has the latest version.

    Am I missing something in my code (sample below)? Or does the application need to be better set up before I start writing the automation tests. EXE is located in a network location.

    ApplicationUnderTest aut = ApplicationUnderTest.Launch(@”\\networkLocation\\testenv\\QA\\application\\setup.exe”);

    WpfEdit userName = new WpfEdit(aut);
    userName.SearchProperties.Add(WpfEdit.PropertyNames.AutomationId, “PART_UserName”);

    userName.Text = “TEST”;

    • Marcel

      The problem is probably that setup.exe is not the real program that is started. it is a bootstrapper, but you need the actual process and attach to that process.

  7. Tim Halse

    Hello Marcel,
    I have been watching your azure devops videos on pluralsight. Great videos!
    I have one question which you didn’t really go into detail about. With continuous delivery and a mvc website when you do a release the website goes offline for a few seconds and the users lose there sessions. Do you have any information on how to utilize slots? I see there is a option to deploy to slot. Are you able to get a video up about slots and releasing to them or any good reference material I coyld use.
    It would be greatly appreciated.

    • Marcel

      I have done many sessions on this at conferences, but I searched and could not find any of them being recorded. So I don’t have anything I can point you at the moment. Sorry.

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