Work item field reference for Visual Studio ALM

By using the index of fields in this topic, you can look up a description of each field used to track work items. This reference includes all fields defined within the default process templates for Team Foundation Server (TFS). You use two main types of fields to track data for a type of work item. System fields are defined for all work item types, and all other fields are created by adding FIELD element definitions for them to a work item type. When the work item type is uploaded to Team Foundation, either when a team project is created or by other means, all new fields are added to the set of fields that are defined for the team project collection. For example, when you create a team project that uses the process template for Microsoft Solutions Framework (MSF) for Agile Software Development, all fields that are defined in each Agile work item type are added to the team project collection of data fields.

You should use as many of the system and existing project collection fields as possible to make your work item type more portable between project collections. To support additional tracking needs, you can define your own custom work item fields. For more information, see Define and modify work item fields.


You can list the attributes of fields using the witadmin listfields command. Also, you can change the field name, the index, and the report attributes for any field except system fields by using the witadmin command-line tool. For more information, see Manage work item fields [witadmin].

You can view the attribute assignments made to all fields defined in a team project collection using the Process Editor, a power tool for Visual Studio. For more information, see the following page on the Microsoft website: Team Foundation Server Power Tools.

Alphabetical index

Values in parenthesis indicate fields that are either System fields used only by one of the default process templates: Scrum, Agile, or CMMI, or are associated with test case management (TCM). For a list of fields that are written to the relational database or data warehouse cube, see Reportable fields reference for Visual Studio ALM.

By using the system fields or other fields you have added to your project collection, you can enable meaningful cross-team project reports and queries. In addition, any non-system field that is referenced in the workflow or forms section of the work item type definition must have a FIELD element that defines it in the FIELDS section of the work item type definition XML file. Also, you must specify any non-system field that you might want to use to generate a query or report in the FIELDS section.

Field reference topics

The following topics describe fields that used in common by all work item types, or those that are specific to just a one or a few work item types.

Fields common to many work types:

Fields used by specific work item types:

Fields used to track CMMI work items:

See Also


Manage work item fields [witadmin]


Reportable fields reference for Visual Studio ALM

Define and modify work item fields

Work with team project artifacts, choose a process template