Administering Team Foundation Server

Welcome to the administration guide for Visual Studio Team Foundation Server 2012 , also known as TFS. This is the best place to start looking for information about how to configure TFS, manage it, and use it to support your business. This information is designed to help novice administrators learn about TFS, as well as help experienced administrators get the most out of this latest version.

Administrators of TFS install, configure, and maintain the deployment, and they perform the following tasks, among others:

  • Back up and restore data

  • Add servers, features and other resources to the deployment

  • Administer permissions and security

  • Organize projects and the resources that support them by creating and maintaining team project collections

  • Maintain the security of the deployment by creating server-level and collection-level groups for managing users and their permissions

  • Manage groups and permissions on servers that are integrated with the deployment, such as SQL Server Reporting Services and SharePoint Products, or coordinate with the administrators of those servers to ensure the smooth operation of Team Foundation Server with those resources

  • Manage the services and service accounts that are used in the deployment

As an administrator of TFS, you should be familiar with Windows security restrictions, user account control, and the operation of and security for SQL Server databases. If your deployment is integrated with SharePoint Products, you should also know how to manage site collections and Web applications.

If you are the administrator for a new or not-yet-installed deployment, you should carefully consider which features of TFS you want to install and how you want to install them. By choosing a deployment topology that best meets the needs of your business, you can help maintain the long-term manageability and sustainability of the software projects that you support. You can review the example topologies of TFS to see what kind of topology might best suit your needs, or you can follow the tutorial that helps you Get Up and Running With a Single-Server Installation [Tutorial]. You might decide that Team Foundation Service, a hosted version of TFS, is the best answer for you and your business.

There are both online and offline versions of both this guide and the installation guide:

  • To find the most recent version of this guide, see this page on the Microsoft Web site: Administering Team Foundation Server. To download the most recent version of this guide for offline use, see this page on the Microsoft Web site: Downloadable Administration Guide.

  • To read the most recent information about how to install Team Foundation and to find a downloadable version of the install guide, see this page on the Microsoft Web site: Installing Team Foundation Server and Visual Studio ALM.

  • The offline versions of these guides are compiled help module (.chm) files. If you experience problems opening a downloaded .chm file, see the last section of this topic.

Resources that help you administer TFS


Common Tasks

Tutorials for Team Foundation Server

Understanding Administrative Concepts and Tools

Organizing Your Server with Team Project Collections

Configuring Resources to Support Team Projects

Features Accessed Through Web Permissions

Learn about Team Foundation Server: You can review the features and capabilities of TFS, explore the server architecture and example deployment topologies, choose the deployment structure that best suits your business needs, and follow tutorials designed to help you get started with a single-server deployment.

Installing Team Foundation Server and Visual Studio ALM

Get Up and Running With a Single-Server Installation [Tutorial]

Install Team Foundation Server: You can choose the installation or upgrade scenario for your deployment, install prerequisites, and install the components of Team Foundation to support your software development projects.

To upgrade your edition of Team Foundation Server, see TFS Upgrade Requirements.

Upgrade Team Foundation Server You can upgrade from one edition of TFS to another. You can also upgrade from an earlier version of TFS to Visual Studio Team Foundation Server 2012.

Upgrading from Visual SourceSafe

Upgrade from Visual SourceSafe: You and your team can enjoy many benefits by upgrading your code projects, files, version history, labels, and user information from Visual SourceSafe to Team Foundation Server (TFS) version control.

Managing the Server Configuration

Configuring Your Server Using the Team Foundation Administration Console

Service Accounts and Dependencies in Team Foundation Server

Backing up and Restoring Your Deployment

Restoring a Single-Server Deployment to New Hardware [Tutorial]

Stop and Start Services, Application Pools, and Websites

Configure Email Notifications and Specify the SMTP Server

Securing Team Foundation Server

Manage the servers and resources in the deployment: After you install and initially configure TFS, you can monitor and change the configuration to support your development projects or increase the security of your deployment. You should also create a backup plan to protect your data. You can also expand or move portions of the deployment to better suit your operational needs.

Create a Team Project Collection

Modify a Team Project Collection

Create team project collections: You can organize a group of development projects and the resources that support them into a team project collection. You can create as many team project collections as you require to support development efforts.

Configuring and Administering Lab Management

Add virtual machines as development and testing resources: You can configure Visual Studio Lab Management to support developing and testing your team's code on virtual environments.

Update an Upgraded Team Project to Access New Features

Configuring Resources to Support Team Projects

Add reporting or project portal resources to existing team projects: You can add or change the resources that are available to members of your team. These resources can include process guidance, a team project portal, and a shared document library.

Administering Team Foundation Version Control

Change how source code is stored and accessed: You can help ensure high-quality code by configuring check-in policies, configuring check-out settings, and optimizing access to the source code. (We are not currently republishing this section. However, you can read the Visual Studio 2010 version of this guidance.)

Configuring and Managing Your Build System

Automatically and consistently build, test, and deploy your app in a distributed environment: You can configure the build system components your team needs to use Team Foundation Build As your team and your code base grow, you can scale out and manage your build system.

Configure Team Foundation Server to Support Your Development Teams

Get Started as a Team

Manage My Profile and View My Permissions

Add Users to Team Projects

Set Administrator Permissions for Team Project Collections

Set Administrator Permissions for Team Foundation Server

Team Foundation Server Permissions

Team Foundation Server Default Groups, Permissions, and Roles

Manage users and groups: You can control what users have access to team projects, team project collections, and the servers that run the components of Team Foundation. You can also control the set of tasks that each type of user can perform.

  • Manage groups and group membership: You can more easily organize and manage users in TFS by using the default groups and their associated permissions in a team project, in a team project collection, or at the server level. You can also create custom groups and grant them specific permissions that match the job requirements of users who work on your projects.

  • Manage users outside of groups: You can add a user to TFS with different permissions than those granted by group membership.

  • Manage Permissions: You can view and change the permissions that are assigned to a user or group at the server level, the collection level, and the project level. By understanding the system permissions, you can better define custom groups and their permissions to meet the security needs of your deployment.

Technical Reference for Team Foundation

Technical Reference: You can learn about the command-line tools with which you can manage your deployment.

TFS Administration forum

Visual Studio ALM Rangers Solutions and Projects

Team Foundation Server Blog

Technical Articles for Visual Studio Application Lifecycle Management

Agile Development Showcase

TFS on CodePlex

Additional Resources: Sometimes the best way to learn about TFS is to interact with your fellow administrators on forums, blogs, and by reading real-world deployment examples.

Opening a downloaded .chm file

On a computer that has security update 896358 installed, you cannot open .chm files that you download. For more information, see the following page on the Microsoft Web site: You cannot open HTML Help files from Internet Explorer after you install security update 896358 or Windows Server 2003 Service Pack 1.

To work around this problem, use either of these methods:

Method 1

  1. Open the .chm file.

  2. In the Open File-Security Warning dialog box, clear the Always ask before opening this file check box.

  3. Choose Open.

Method 2

  1. Open the context menu of the .chm file, and then choose Properties.

  2. Choose Unblock.

  3. Open the .chm file.

See Also


Planning and Tracking Projects

Improving Quality with Visual Studio Diagnostic Tools

What's New for Application Lifecycle Management in Visual Studio 2012