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Posted 23 Apr 2016

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Team Foundation Server (TFS) 2013

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24 Apr 2016CPOL9 min read
In this post we will focus on how to configure and administration with Team Foundation Server (TFS – 2013)


According to Wikipedia Team Foundation Server (commonly abbreviated to TFS) is a Microsoft product that provides source code management (either via Team Foundation Version Control or Git), reporting, requirements management, project management (for both agile software development and waterfall teams), automated builds, lab management, testing and release management capabilities.

It covers the entire application lifecycle. TFS can be used as a back-end to numerous integrated development environments (IDEs) but is tailored for Microsoft Visual Studio and Eclipse on all platforms.


  1. TFS Requirement
  2. TFS Installation
  3. TFS Project Collection
  4. TFS Team Project
  5. Configure Workspace
  6. Manage Source Control
  7. TFS Settings
  8. Compare
  9. Branching
  10. Merging

1.TFS Requirement:

TFS installation supported on a Microsoft Windows server/client OS. Before installation let’s have a review the System requirements for Team Foundation Server

Operation System

  1. Server OS
    1. 64-bit versions of Windows Server 2012 R2 (Essentials, Standard, Datacenter)
    2. 64-bit versions of Windows Server 2012
    3. 64-bit versions of Windows Server 2008 R2 (Standard, Enterprise, Datacenter)
  2. Client OS
    1. Windows 10
    2. Windows 8.1 (Basic, Professional, Enterprise)
    3. Windows 8
    4. Windows 7 (Home Premium, Professional, Enterprise, Ultimate)

SQL Server

  1. SQL Server 2014 ¹ (Express, Standard, Enterprise)
  2. SQL Server 2012

Get a full review here.

2.TFS Installation:

Microsoft has published a “TFS Install and Administration Guide” in CHM form for download. Here you can go through by clicking the link & get it – TFS Install and Administration Guides.

I am using Windows 10 with SQL server 2014 as installation pc. Let’s get into topic step by step.


FIG: 1 let’s open the tfs server setup file.

Image 1


FIG: 2 in this step a popup with setup screen will appear, accept the term and click “Install Now”.

Image 2


FIG: 3 as you can see Installation is in progress.

Image 3

In our next step we have to choose a installation wizard

  1. Basic wizard
    1. Install the essential service along with SQL express installation.
  2. Advance wizard
    1. Install all installation option.


FIG: 4 we will install using Advance wizard. Click “Start Wizard

Image 4


FIG: 5 Advance wizard will popup. Choose “Next”.

Image 5


FIG: 6 in this step we need to specify a database server, we can also use an existing empty database by specify a database name. Choose “Next”.

Image 6


FIG: 7 Here we need to provide a service account as primary account for TFS. Choose an option. In my case i have kept as default(NT AUTHORITY\LocalService) which will authorizes on behalf of my account t does not have a password. Choose “Next”.

Image 7


FIG: 8 here in “Application Tire” we will configure directory & port for TFS web service. Choose “Next”.

Image 8


FIG: 9 locate a folder path for cache TFS resource which will access frequently to increase communication performance. Choose “Next”.

Image 9


FIG: 10 Tick check box if you want to install a default collection(recommended) in your TFS Server. Choose “Next”.

Image 10

Overview on creating new collection from here.

FIG: 11 let’s get review our Installing Component.  Choose “Next”.

Image 11


FIG: 12 in this step our system will get validate & need to get passed to conduct installation.  Choose “Next”.

Image 12


FIG: 13 after passing readiness check, configuration process start. Success message will display after completing all process. Choose “Next”.

Image 13


FIG: 14 this is the final step. Review the result here & go to the link to get enabled TFS web services. Choose “Close”.

Image 14


FIG: 15 Go to > All Apps > Microsoft Team Foundation Server

Image 15


FIG: 16 Finally TFS Administration Console Installed, that manage entire application life-cycle.

Image 16


3.TFS Project Collection

Team project collection is a group of project to manage multiple project from a single location. Let’s start with TFS Administration Console.


FIG: 17 In Team Project Collections, choose Create Collection.

Image 17


FIG: 18 The Create Team Project Collection wizard opens.

Image 18


FIG: 19 In Name filed, specify a name for your collection. Under Description, you can optionally specify a brief description of your collection and it's purpose. Choose Next.

Image 19


FIG: 20 In SQL Server Instance, specify local/remote server name that host the database for the collection. Check first option for creating a new database for the collection, if you have existing empty database that created before you can specify that by checking second option. Choose Next.

Image 20


FIG: 21 in this step review the settings. Click Verify.

Image 21


FIG: 22 in this step show verified status whether the TFS collection is ready to create or not. Click Create.

Image 22


FIG: 23 the creation process starts.

Image 23


FIG: 24 after completing all required process successfully the wizard finishes, Choose Close.

Image 24


FIG: 25 as you can see, finally the collection is listed in the console window.

Image 25


4.TFS Team Project

Let’s open Visual Studio 2013 to connect TFS server. From Visual Studio menu bar Choose [TEAM > Connect to Team Foundation Server] to connect TFS server.

FIG: 26

Image 26


FIG: 27 In Name/URL type Local/Remote URL of TFS server. The default Port is 8080. In this case I have used local PC Name as server. Click OK.

Image 27


FIG: 28 Team Project Collection will appear. Choose desired collection & Click Connect.

Image 28


FIG: 29 after connecting TFS click on Source Control Explorer from Team Explorer to view the TFS Project Collection. From Visual Studio menu bar Choose [File> New > Team Project].

Image 29


FIG: 30 specify Name & Description for new TFS Project. Choose Next.

Image 30


FIG: 31 choose a project template to manage Team project. Choose Next.

Image 31


FIG: 32 specify a version control setting. Choose Next.

Image 32


FIG: 33 confirm setting. Click Finish.

Image 33


FIG: 34 as you can see finishing status will appear after creating TFS project. Click Close.

Image 34


5.Configure Workspace

Workspace is a local copy where develop & test code. We can manage our workspaces from the Team Explorer. A default workspace created automatically, also we can maintain multiple workspace.

FIG: 35 to modify Click Workspace.

Image 35


FIG: 36 to modify existing workspace, Click Edit.

Image 36


FIG: 37 edit workspace window will appear, Click Advanced.

Image 37


FIG: 38 edit workspace window will appear with advanced option, here we can specify workspace whether its location is Local or Server. Click Ok.

Image 38


FIG: 39 browse source control folder path for working items. Click Ok.

Image 39


FIG: 40 browse local folder path for working items. Click Ok.

Image 40


FIG: 41 yes/no prompt window will appear with instruction of workspace modification. Choose Yes.

Image 41



6.Manage Source Control

TFS source control is a software configuration management that manage project folder & files of large scale of development component.

To Add item Go to > Team Explorer > Source Control

FIG: 42 add folder structure/file in this step. File/folder will add with a plus icon that indicate item has added to source control. After check-in item the icon will change.

Image 42


FIG: 43 right click on project collection choose check in pending changes to upload the added file to server.

Image 43


FIG: 44 pending changes will included in team explorer, add description in comment field while check in. Click Check In.

Image 44


FIG: 45 right click on main branch choose Add Items to Folder.

Image 45


FIG: 46 browse desired local file to add to source control. Choose Finish.

Image 46


FIG: 47 double click on project solution that we have added to source control. A configuration warning will appear that ask to bind the solution to source control. Click Yes.

Image 47


FIG: 48 Select the project solution then click Bind.

Image 48


FIG: 49 as you can see an extra file (.vssscc extension) is added to source control with bind information properties.

Image 49


FIG: 50 let’s update the pending changes to server. Click Check In.

Image 50


FIG: 51 as you can see the files are successfully checked in to the server.

Image 51


FIG: 52 build/rebuild the solution.

Image 52


7.TFS Settings

Workspace setting:

FIG: 53 Go to [Team Explorer > Setting]

Image 53


FIG: 54 Go to [Team Project Collection > Source Control]

Image 54


FIG: 55 Go to tab [Workspace Setting] choose a default workspace type & Click Ok.

Image 55

Two types of workspace. As you can see from below image

  1. Local workspace and
  2. Server workspace

With local workspace we can work offline to perform source control operations without going TFS server (Online). Working offline have no option of checkout locks.

The other hand while we are using server workspace there is a checkout lock which prevent to work on single file by multiple user same time.


Check-in Policy

In TFS we can add check in policy, while user is going to check in pending changes.

By default, the check-in policy types:

  1. Builds:   Requires last successful before a check-in.
  2. Changeset comment policy:  Requires comment before check-in.
  3. Testing Policy:  Requires tests before check-in.
  4. Work Items:   Requires work items to be associated with the check-in.


FIG: 56 Select [Team Explorer > Setting] then Go to [Team Project > Source Control] source control setting window will popup.

Image 56


FIG: 57 As you can see from below image in Check out Setting tab enable multiple check-out checkbox is not selected due to prevent working on single file by multiple user at the same time. The other option will ensure that latest file is going to checkout and updated.

Image 57


FIG: 58 In the Check in-policy tab we have choose changeset comment policy to ensure that a comment must be provided while the file is going to check-in by user. 

Image 58



TFS has facility to compare two files/ single file by changeset to see their differences.

FIG: 59 Go to [Solution Explorer > Compare] like below image.

Image 59


FIG: 60 select a type Click Ok.

Image 60


FIG: 61 in this window choose find option to compare between changeset.

Image 61


FIG: 62 as you can see from below image, the changes of same file with different changeset.

Image 62


Branching & Merging

TFS has great facility of branching & merging. In TFS we can create/convert a folder to Branch or Branch to folder.


FIG: 63 in TFS we can convert a folder to branch or create a new branch. Go to [Source Control Explorer > Branch and Merging > Convert to Branch] like below image.

Image 63

The folder will convert to a branch as well as TFS change the icon at the same time.


FIG: 64 from our converted folder we may now create a new branch by choosing the option “Branch”. In source control right click on converted folder then choose Branch and Merging > Branch.

Image 64


FIG: 65 type a branch name with specifying description in description field and click Branch.

Image 65


FIG: 66 yes/no prompt will appear, Click Yes to perform the operation.

Image 66

FIG: 67 as you can see a new branch is created with our specified name “DEVELOPMENT”. Perform “Get Latest version” action to update the local files downloading from server.

Image 67



Merging branch is another TFS great option to combine the changes between two branches. In this option we must require to resolve the conflicted file.


FIG: 68 right click the updated folder choose Branching and Merging select Marge.

Image 68


FIG: 69 a wizard will appear with source & target branch path. Choose Next.

Image 69


FIG: 70 choose a type then click next.

Image 70


FIG: 71 TFS will do a marge operation between branches with pending changes.

Image 71


FIG: 72 all changed file will included in pending list. Perform a check-in operation to update the TFS server with changed file. Click Check in.

Image 72


FIG: 73 Finally Let’s build and run the application.

Image 73

Hope this will help :)   ||  Reference:



This article, along with any associated source code and files, is licensed under The Code Project Open License (CPOL)

Written By
Software Developer (Senior) s3 Innovate Pte Ltd
Bangladesh Bangladesh
Hi, I am Shashangka Shekhar,

Working with Microsoft Technologies. Since March 2011, it was my first step to working with Microsoft Technologies, achieved bachelor’s degree on Computer Science from State University of Bangladesh(Dhaka). Have 10+ years of professional experience, currently working as Senior Software Engineer at s3 Innovate Pte Ltd.

I believe in desire of learning & also love to be a part of .Net Community by sharing knowledge’s.

Comments and Discussions

QuestionMy vote of 5 Pin
DaveArel26-Apr-16 11:02
DaveArel26-Apr-16 11:02 
AnswerRe: My vote of 5 Pin
Shashangka Shekhar27-Apr-16 8:03
professionalShashangka Shekhar27-Apr-16 8:03 
you are most welcome Wink | ;)

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