The Canarys Workitem Link Validate is an Azure DevOps Extension created to validate parent-child linking, ensuring that linking adheres to the predefined process backlog hierarchy. This extension helps prevent users from creating incorrectly linked work items, providing essential checks for Agile, Basic, Scrum, and CMMI project types.
How It Works:
Within Azure DevOps, when a user attempts to create a link between work items, whether as a parent or child, this extension evaluates whether the link adheres to the predefined process backlog hierarchy. It assesses if the parent work item type can be correctly linked to the child work item type. Based on this evaluation, the extension either permits or restricts the user from saving the work item. It supports the default process backlog hierarchies of Agile, Basic, Scrum, and CMMI project types.
If the child work item type cannot be linked to the parent work item type, the extension takes action by disabling the save button and displaying an error message. For example, if a user attempts to add an Epic work item as a child to a Task work item, the save button is disabled, and an error message stating “Cannot add a child of type Epic” is displayed.
Similarly, if the parent work item type cannot be linked to the child work item type, the extension takes action by disabling the save button and displaying an error message. For example, if a user attempts to add a Task work item as a Parent to User Story work item, the save button is disabled, and an error message stating “Cannot add parent with type Task” is displayed.
In the provided gif, “MyAgiletest” is an Agile Project with a specific process backlog hierarchy: Epic -> Feature -> User Story -> Task. In one scenario, the user attempts to set the Task work item type as a parent to a User Story work item type, which is not allowed within this hierarchy. Consequently, an error message appears, stating “Cannot add parent with type Task,” and the save button is disabled.
Similarly, another attempt is made to add an Epic work item type as a child to a User Story work item type, which is also outside the specified hierarchy. In this case, the error message reads “Cannot add child with type Epic,” and the save button is disabled.
However, when the user tries to add a Task work item type as a child to a User Story work item type, which aligns with the specified hierarchy, the extension allows the user to save the work item without any errors.
Conversely, if the parent work item type can be linked to the child work item type, the extension clears any existing errors and enables the save button.
This tool actively operates during work item loading, resetting, updating, refreshing, or saving. However, it’s worth noting that when a work item is updated on the sprint/backlog page, the error message may not be displayed. Nevertheless, the error message will appear when the work item is opened.
How to Set Up:
Step 1: Navigate to the Visual Marketplace.
Step 2: In the search bar, type “Canarys Workitem Link Validate.”
Step 3: Click on the “Get it free” button.
Step 4: Select the organization where you want this extension to be installed.
Step 5: Click on the “Install” button.
The Canarys Workitem Link Validate extension provides a straightforward yet essential functionality within Azure DevOps. It ensures that work item linking aligns with the defined process backlog hierarchy, helping users avoid potential errors and inconsistencies in their work item relationships. By actively monitoring and validating links, this extension contributes to the maintenance of a structured and organized project management environment.