Working in Microsoft Excel and Microsoft Project Connected to Team Foundation Server

You can communicate with Visual Studio Team Foundation Server by using Microsoft Excel or Microsoft Project. You can decide to either work in an online mode where you are connected to the server that hosts the team project that you have accessed, or in an offline mode where you are accessing the local computer and document.


You may receive the following error if you install Microsoft Office 2010 on the same computer as a previous version of Office.

Team Foundation Error

Interface not registered (Exception from HRESULT: 0x80040155)

You may be able to resolve this error by repairing Office 2010. You can access the Repair option by opening the Control Panel, clicking Uninstall or change a program, right-clicking Office 2010, and then clicking Change.

When you import work items into an Microsoft Excel or Microsoft Project document, local copies of your work items are created. The data in the local document at first matches the data in the database, but you or other team members can change the data about work items and cause the two to differ. If you want to view the most recent changes from the database, you can refresh the document. If you want to write changes from the document to the database, you can publish the document.

When you publish a document, the document, which includes your changes, is uploaded to the work item database. When you refresh a document, the document is updated to match the current values in the work item database.

Team Foundation Document Integration Image

Common Tasks


Related topics

Connect to a Team Project. To access and modify work items, you must connect from your Team Foundation client to the server that hosts your team project. 

Connect a Microsoft Office Document to Team Foundation Server

Work offline. You can make additions and changes to work items by using Microsoft Excel and Microsoft Project in an offline mode and disconnected from Team Foundation Server.

Work Offline and Reconnect to Team Foundation Server

Update your work item list or upload changes that you made to work items. When you publish work items in Microsoft Excel, only changed work items are updated in the work item tracking database. You can control how your work items are refreshed by specifying the type of list.

Refresh Work Items and Change the List Type in Office Excel

Update your project plan or upload changes that you made to tasks. In Microsoft Project, you can control which work items in an Microsoft Project document are published and refreshed.

Publish or Refresh Work Items in Office Project

Common Tasks for Resolving Publishing Errors

When you publish the changes that you made in an Microsoft Excel or Microsoft Project document, errors may occur. You must resolve these errors before the work items can be published. If a team member updates one or more work items in Microsoft Project or Microsoft Excel, the change can introduce an error that cannot be published to Team Foundation. The error produced might be a data conflict, data validation error, or invalid link in a tree. You can change values in a dialog box to resolve data conflicts and most data validation errors, and you can correct the data in Microsoft Excel to resolve invalid links.

The Office integration features of Visual Studio Application Lifecycle Management (ALM) prevent most publishing errors by warning you about using values that the work item fields do not support. The following table gives you examples of issues that you could experience and also provides links to resolutions:



Resolve data conflicts. A data conflict occurs when one team member changes a field value in either Microsoft Project or Microsoft Excel at the same time another team member changes the same field in Team Foundation Server. You can use Team Foundation Server tools to resolve these data conflicts.

Resolve Data Conflicts

Resolve data validation errors. A data validation error occurs if a team member changes a work item in a way that violates the rules for that type of work item. You can use tools in Team Foundation Server and Office Excel to resolve these errors.

Resolve Data Validation Errors

Resolve invalid links in a tree. An invalid link occurs if a team member views work items in Microsoft Excel as a hierarchy or tree list, and moves a work item or sorts the list so that it breaks the dependencies between work items. You can resolve this error by reviewing the error message and repositioning work items to reflect the work item structure.

Resolve Invalid Links in a Microsoft Excel List Tree

Correct summary tasks that are reporting hours. If you determine that hours are counted twice in reports that contain task hours, you can correct the problem by using the Work Items With Summary Values team query.

Address Inaccuracies Published for Summary Values

See Also


Managing Work Items Using Microsoft Excel Bound to Team Foundation Server

Scheduling Tasks and Assigning Resources Using Microsoft Project

Tracking Bugs, Tasks, and Other Work Items

Working with Team Foundation Clients