Wednesday, November 29, 2006

TFS Permission Manager 1.0

Leon, a VSTS MVP developed a TFS Permission Manager that can provide the following features
  • Add or remove TFS group membership, Reporting Services role membership and SharePoint role membership.
  • Set Server and Project-level permissions.
  • Set AreaPath and Source Control permissions.
  • Create new TFS users with permissions identical to those of specified existing user.
  • Save user permissions as template and use it later to create new or update existing users.

TFS Permission Manager can be downloaded from here

Saturday, November 25, 2006

TFS Reliability & Disaster Recovery

bharry posed a great article on his blog talking about TFS reliability and disaster recovery breaking it down to the application and data tiers.
We continue to evolve and improve upon the TFS reliability and disaster
recovery story. Fundamentally reliability and disaster recovery are about
preserving service (or minimizing outage) and eliminating data loss in the face
of failure in components of your system. When we look at TFS component
failure, we primarily focus on the application tier (or web tier), the data tier
and the disk subsystem.

TeamWord, a New TFS Add-In

TeamWord, a new TFS add-in created to allow Work Item tracking integration to Microsoft Word 2003.

Check it out here, and you can download it here.

TeamWord is add-in created with .NET 2.0 for Microsoft Word 2003
to enable users (analytics, programmers, project managers etc.) that
use Microsoft Team Foundation Server for work item tracking to use Word as the
front-end for editing work items. TeamWord allows user to insert work item
directly in an existing document, thus allowing tracking work item status from
the place of their origin.

Thursday, November 23, 2006

Professional Team Foundation Server, Now Available

Wrox just released Professional Team Foundation Server book by Jean-Luc David (former Team System MVP and now at Microsoft Canada), Mickey Gousset (Team System MVP), and Erik Gunvaldson (Microsoft). Great book ... get a copy ...
As the most important component of Microsoft's Visual Studio® 2005 Team
System, Team Foundation Server is the central integration point that provides a
collaborative environment for every member of a team, regardless of role. Since
Team Foundation Server is so tightly interwoven with the rest of Team System,
the authors have decided to present you with an invaluable resource that covers
both, so that you may learn to set up and administer Team Foundation Server in
order to effectively use the whole Team System toolset effectively.

Wednesday, November 22, 2006

Boost TFS Performance under a VM

According to Andrew Dugdell, one of the VM Gurus, in order to boost your TFS performance under a VM you have to read the following 7 (non-desctructive and quite simple) tips.
  1. Move your VM to a second physical disk to your host OS – maybe even a USB drive if you are on a workstation or Laptop
  2. Defragment the filesystem inside your VM
  3. Defrag the pagefile inside your VM – Sysinternals PageDefrag works a treat
  4. Defrag the drive on your host that holds the VHD
  5. Defrag the pagefile on your host as well – again pagedefrag from sysinternals
  6. Install [updated] VM Additions inside your VM – latest version is 13.552
  7. Configure your anti-virus scanning to exclude VHD files on the host

For the super deluxe list of Virtual Server tweaks you can check his post.

Tuesday, November 21, 2006

Work Item Moving Tool

Eric Lee a former MSFT has updated his Work Item Moveing Tool (Code named Hemi) to work with the RTM version of TFS.

It can be downloaded here, this will also be needed for Hemi to work.

For details check Eric's post
Hey guys, I've finally had a chance to update my work item moving tool to
work with the RTM release of Team Foundation Server. Along the way, I made some
modifications and changes that I've wanted to do for a while. I haven't thought
of a better name than 'work item mover' so for now I've code-named it if you
will 'Hemi'.

Monday, November 20, 2006

TFS Capacity Planning

bharry posted a blog talking about TFS Capacity Planning that everyone shout take a look at
We've tried to be very conservative - generally rounding down the actual
results we achieved by 10-20%. Of course every team varies and if you have a
team of people who run queries every 30 seconds all day, you'll need more server
than we're recommending here. These numbers were based on the load we've
experienced using TFS internally for the past year or so. Again, you can read
more detail in previous blog posts but this turns out to be about 0.1 peak
requests per second per user.

Sunday, November 19, 2006

IE7 Browser Template for VSTS Web Tests

Sean Lumley posted about creating an Internet Explorer 7.0 browser template for use in Team System Web tests.
This post walks you through the process of adding a new IE7 browser
template that can be used by your web tests when running them stand alone or
inside of a load test.

Distributed System Designer Walkthroughs

You can use these walkthroughs found on MSDN to gain an understanding of how to use the Distributed System Designers in Visual Studio 2005

VSTS Design for Operations Integration Kit

The Visual Studio 2005 Team System Design for Operations Integration Kit furthers Microsoft’s Dynamic Systems Initiative (DSI) by integrating and automating the communication and management of unhandled (non-instrumented) application errors and performance bottlenecks between operations and development for any custom .NET application. With this Integration Kit, application faults and performance bottlenecks automatically generate work items/trouble tickets in Visual Studio 2005 Team System. The result: both operations and application support/development teams have clear insight into the behavior and health of .NET applications in production, better equipping both to quickly identify, isolate, and resolve application issues, and save unnecessary costs.

It can be downloaded from Microsoft Download Site.

Saturday, November 18, 2006

VSTS for Database Professionals RTM Sneak Peak

Matt Nunn, VSTS for Database Professionals Product Manager, provides a sneak peek into what to expect in the RTM for Database Professional Edition on TechEd
Get ready.... Visual Studio 2005 Team Edition for Database Professionals
will release to manufacture (RTM) at the end of November! Matt Nunn provides a
sneak peek into what we can expect to see.

Thursday, November 16, 2006

Scripting Adding User Accounts to TFS

Scripting Adding User Accounts to TFS can be done as scripting any other Windows Group scripting process following the process documented on Technet

You can check TFS Security articles on MSDN TFSAdminUtil and Code Project TFSSecurity

Wednesday, November 15, 2006

TFS Useful Links

While looking for some useful stuff for VSTS, I came across the following great ones ...
Thanks to a bunch of blogs and newsgroups for them ...

MSF Process Guidance, DB Included

MS Released a new version of MSF Processes that supports VSTS for Database Professionals users for both MSF for Agile and MSF for CMMI

Process guidance for database professionals included in the Microsoft
Solutions Framework. This process guidance is the first of its kind in the
industry and demonstrates Microsoft’s commitment to making the database
professional a full-fledged participant in the application life cycle.

VSTS for Database Professionals RTM SOON!

VSTS for Database Professionals RTM on November 30th, 2006

On November 14th 2006 Microsoft announced the official Release to
Manufacture (RTM) date for Visual Studio Team Edition for Database
Professionals. Visual Studio Team edition for Database Professionals is a
market-shifting database development product designed to manage database change,
improve software quality through database testing and bring the benefits of
Visual Studio Team System and application life-cycle development to the database

Sunday, November 12, 2006

VSTS for Database Professionals Launch in NY & Boston

Susan Wisowaty posted in her blog about VSTS for Database Professionals Launch in NY & Boston in December 12th.

VS DB Pro delivers a market-shifting database development product designed
to manage database change, improve software quality through database
and bring the benefits of Visual Studio Team System and life cycle
to the database professional.

VSTS for DB Professionals CTP7 Changes

Below is the change CTP7 team have done in the extensions file for both Custom Test Conditions and Generators in CTP7.

They perform xsd validation now over the xml file and thus require the extensions xml to appropriately map to the required xsd. This thus requires all extension files to be updated to incorporate this. Below is an example

<?xml version="1.0" encoding="us-ascii"?>

<extensions assembly="Generators, Version=, Culture=neutral, PublicKeyToken=<Public Key>" version="1" xmlns="urn:Microsoft.VisualStudio.TeamSystem.Data.Extensions" xmlns:xsi="" xsi:schemaLocation="urn:Microsoft.VisualStudio.TeamSystem.Data.Extensions


<extension type="Generators.PersonGenerator" enabled="true" />


Thursday, November 09, 2006

TFS - WSS 3.0 Integration Fails!!

Upgrading WSS 2.0 to 3.0 on your TFS Application Tier is not supported in version 1 of TFS.

Doing so will result in the following:
  • The Team Explorer's 'Documents' node will have a red X on it and will not expand.
  • Team Project Creation Wizard will fail with the standard templates, only templates with all WSS functionality removed will work.
  • You will not be able to browse to the site by right-clicking on the project and selecting 'Open Project Portal'.

This means that the WSS integration to TFS will fail on all client machines.

And this is not resolved in Service Pack 1 as well, I think we'll have to wait for future releases of TFS

TFS VC Check-In Policies

A Check-In Policies pack will be available soon containing the following:
  • Check-in policy granularity
    It will be based on the one available in Code Gallery, the changes will be mainly packaging it, changing some of the UI and taking out some of the complexity.
  • Work-Item Associations
    It will be based on specified queries to check the associated work items by the developers are part of the queries or else it will be blocked, that will help making sure all check-ins are associated with real work.
  • Banned files
    This policy allows you to specify a file extension or a regular expression in order to keep files that you don’t want out of version control. This is usually used for dll’s, build artifacts, or some website files that are automatically generated.
  • Check-in Comments
    This policy gets shipped as part of the SDK. It looks at the check-in comments and makes sure it is not blank.

Wednesday, November 08, 2006

TFS Installation Common Errors

TFS can be a difficult program to install, so it's most adviced to follow the Install Guide as close as possible.

Still, a lot of people face problems while doing so. Below is a list of common errors that may appear and their most common resolutions.

Error 26403 (Failed to get group 'WinNT://Localhost/STS_WPG' or failed to add user: TFSSERVICE to group STS_WPG)
There can be several causes for this error. Check the following:
  • Under Administrative Tools in the Control Panel, open Computer Management and check Groups. Make sure the STS_WG group exists. If not, this will need to be created and needs to include the TFSSetup, TFSService and TFSReports users, or whichever users you are using for setup.
  • Make sure that you do not have the SQL Server Desktop Engine (MSDE) or Windows Sharepoint Services for MSDE installed. Check Add/Remove Programs in the Control Panel. If it exists, remove it. Remove Windows Sharepoint Services 2.0 from the machine. Make sure you are installing Windows Sharepoint Services with SP2 that can be downloaded from the Microsoft web site. When doing the installation WSS 2.0, make sure you choose a server farm installation when it asks for the installation type.

Error 28804 (Setup cannot connect to the SQL Server 2005 Reporting Services report server)
This problem can happen if the machine you are installing to has multiple IP addresses, and the address that hosts the report server is not the same as the one to which DNS resolves the machine name. TFS setup will attempt to connect to the Report Server through the IP Address but if the address resolves to a secondary web site and not the report server, the request will fail with HTTP Status 404: Not Found.

To resolve this problem, chang the IP address of the report server in IIS Manager (START, RUN, INETMGR) to match the machine name IP Address and retry the installation.

Error 28805 (Setup cannot finish the request to the SQL Server 2005 Reporting Service report server. Verify that the report server is installed and running and that you have sufficient privileges to access it)
Check the following to resolve this problem:

  • In the SQL Reporting Services Configuration Tool, click on the Database Setup tab and make sure you are using Windows Credentials.
  • Delete encryption keys in reporting service configuration if they exist.

Error 28936 (the Team Foundation Server ServerStatus Web service failed with 404 HTTP NotFound status)
This error typically happens because you logged onto the machine with a domain account and then tried to install TFS with two local accounts. When doing TFS Setup you need to log into the machine on the local account that will be doing the install such as the local TFSSetup account (the account you will use for TFS Setup) or the admin account.

If the above fails, again check that Windows Sharepoint Services for MSDE is not installed.

Error 28925 (Calling the Team Foundation Server ServerStatus Web service failed)
This error has to do with DNS and connectivity. It is typically caused by the server name not resolving via DNS correctly. You can add the server name to the DNS server so that it resolves correctly. It can also be caused by the DNS server IPAddress not matching the other machines on the network. To check, go to START, RUN and type CMD. In the command prompt window type IPCONFIG /ALL and hit Enter. Then check the IP Address of the DNS server. Match this against the DNS Server of another machine on the network.

You can also check IIS to make sure nothing else is using port 8080. If you have something like Apache using port 8080, you will need to have it use a different port.

Error 20082 (Error Unknown)
There are a couple of known causes for this error. First and foremost, remember that when installing TFS you need to be logged in as a user that is under the same context as the TFSService and TFSReports accounts. To clarify - if the accounts that you will use for TFSService and TFSReports are domain accounts, then the account you use to setup TFS must also be a domain account and that's the account you need to be logged into. If the accounts you are using for TFSService and TFSReports are local machine accounts, then the account you use to setup TFS must be a local machine account and you must be logged in as that user. In either case, the account you use to setup TFS must have admin rights to the machine.Another possible cause for this error is that SQL Reporting Services is not configured correctly. Open the Reporting Services Configuration tool from Start, Programs (or All Programs), Microsoft SQL Server 2005, Configuration Tools. If you have red X's on Server Status, Report Server Virtual Directory, Report Manager Virtual Directory, Windows Service Identity, Web Service Identity, Database Setup or Initialization, you will need to resolve these before you can install. You can also start up the IIS configuration tool by going to START, RUN and type INETMGR. Expand the local computer. You should see Application Pools. Look under the Default Application Pool. Make sure ReportServer is listed in the Application Pool. Also, right click Report Server, left click properties and go to the Identity tab. Make sure this is set to run under the local system account.

Error 29112 (Report server service not configured properly)
This error can have multiple causes. Check the following:

  • Reporting Services isn't configured properly, like the error says. Open the Reporting Services Configuration tool (Start, Programs, Microsoft SQL Server 2005, Configuration Tools). If you don't have green checks all the way down to and including Initialization (with the exception of Encryption Keys) then this is most likely the problem. Check the following:
    Server Status - If not Running, click the START button in the middle of the page
    Report Server Virtual Directory - Name should read Report Server; Website should read Default Web Site
    Report Manager Virtual Directory - Name should read Reports; Website should read Default Web Site
    Windows Service Identity - Service Name should read Report Server; Service Account should read LocalSystem; Built In Account should be selected with Local System in the drop down boxWeb Service Identity - ASP .NET Service Account should read NT Authority\Network Service;
    Report Server should read ReportServer; Report Manager should read ReportServer
    Database Setup - Server Name should be the name of the machine; Database Name should read ReportServer; Credentials Type should read Service Credentials
    Initialization - The machine name should be listed with the SQL Server, the ID and the Initialized check box checked. If not checked, select the instance and click the Initialize button
  • Make sure that the Default Application Pool in IIS Manager is set to run under the Network Service Account (Start, Run, type INETMGR, click OK. Right click Default App Pool, Properties, Identity tab)

Error 32000
This is one of those all-inclusive errors that looks really intimidating when you see it because the error itself contains a really big freaking number. 32000 comes in many flavors. It's the very end of the error that you want to look at right after the words 'non 0 value: or 'non-zero value'.

  • non zero value: -2130246810 -
    In INETMGR, right click the Default web site and left click on Properties. On the Directory Security tab, click Edit and make sure that Integrated Windows Authentication is being used.
    In INETMGR, right click the Default web site and left click on Properties. Go to the Web Site tab. Make sure the IP Address field under Web Site Identificaiton is set to 'All Unassigned'.
  • non zero value:-2130242250 or -1 -
    There isn't much info on this error, just that it is normally caused by a bum installation of Windows Sharepoint Services 2.0. Try removing it from ARP (Add/Remove Programs) and reinstall.
  • non zero value: -4 or -5
    This one is typically a problem with SQL Reporting Services. Check the Reporting Services Configuration tool to make sure that you have green check marks for all items.
    Open Internet Explorer and in the Address Bar, type http://machinename/reports to bring up the Reporting Services reports. If you bring up a 'Page cannot be displayed' or 401 or 404 error then Reporting Services is not correctly configured.

TFS Integration

TFS can be integrated with other products than Visual Studio 2005 by installing the Visual Studio Team Foundation Server MSSCCI Provider

The Provider will give TFS Source Control access to the following products:
  • Visual Studio .NET 2003
  • Visual C++ 6 SP6
  • Visual Visual Basic 6 SP6
  • Visual FoxPro 9 SP1
  • Microsoft Access 2003 SP2
  • SQL Server Management Studio
  • Sparx Systems Enterprise Architect 6.0
  • Sybase PowerBuilder 10.5

Team Explorer will still be needed to be installed on client’s desktop.

Team Foundation Sidekick V1.1

Attrice has released a new version of their Team Foundation Sidekick, a TFS plugin including features as follows:

  • The ability to edit build definitions more easily inside Team Explorer
  • An option to have the history window track the selection in the Source Control Explorer
  • A feature to search for files in the Source Control tree by doing a filename wildcard search

Team Foundation Sidekick is available to download from here.

Tuesday, November 07, 2006

Add Test to Multiple Test Lists

If you would like to place a Test in multiple Test Lists, you can just press the CTRL button while dragging it to make a copy of it instead of a move action.

The pre-RTM builds had the drag and drop feature working normally but that was just changed in the later realease.

At least it still can work ...

Guidance Automation Toolkit and Domain-Specific Language Tools for Visual Studio 2005: Integration Scenarios

Mauro Regio and Víctor García Aprea wrote a great article about Guidance Automation Toolkit and Domain-Specific Language Tools for Visual Studio 2005: Integration Scenarios on MSDN.

The Microsoft Guidance Automation Package (GAT) and Domain-Specific Language Tools for Visual Studio 2005 (DSL) are two key technologies in Microsoft's software-factory strategy that allow architects and developers to author and package guidance and domain-specific languages.

GAT and DSL offer considerable value when used separately. However, when used together, they complement each other and, more importantly, can make up for certain limitations that each technology might have in its current state.

This paper presents a few GAT/DSL integration scenarios and discusses the benefits of adopting them, how to combine the two technologies, and whether you need to develop significant code development to do that.

TS Level 200 Training

A self learning VPC-based training course on Team System basics is now available for download from Microsoft Downloads (Visual Studio 2005 Team System Basics Training (200-Level)).

It contains the following modules:
  1. Overview
  2. Team Foundation Administration
  3. Architect
  4. Developer
  5. Tester
  6. Project Manager
  7. Team Explorer

The VPC is really large (over 5 GB extracted to 15 GB), but it contains a virtual machine image that contains a complete installation of Visual Studio Team System, including Team Suite and Team Foundation Server.

VPC image can be run on Virtual PC 2004 or Virtual Server 2005.

Monday, November 06, 2006

VSTS for Database Professionals Latest News

VSTS for Database Professionals CTP7 was released few days ago and is now available for downloading

A side to the new release, a New TFS Administrator Guide is ready to download as well in CHM format, the file include updates made since August's release.

Also, the English version of the Documentation is now available on MSDN.

Thursday, November 02, 2006

How to Configure TF Build for an Incremental Build

An incremental reuses the results of a previous build maintained by Team Foundation Build to perform an optimized build based on the changes since the last build.

After you create a build type for incremental builds, run the first build. This creates the required workspace and gets all the source files onto the build computer.

Check the full post on MSDN.

VSTS Webcast Series

Learn more about VSTS by attending those Webcast series.

The Sessions are designed to provide concrete understanding of VSTS' tools that support the Software Development Team. 

VSTS Lab @ Dubai

I'll be heading to Dubai on Friday to attend a 5 days VSTS Lab held by Microsoft ... I'm sure I'll come back with lots and lots of stuff to post about ... See you when I'm back ...

VSTS for Database Professionals Final CTP

CTP7, the final CTP version is currently in the final testing phases, think of it as the RC, it'll be out early next week.

Things to know about the upcoming release are:

CTP7 Installation Requirements

In order to get ready for RTM, CTP7 will now require a retail version of  VSTS or the trial version of VSTS (found here). That is how the evaluation process will work once released. If a customer is looking to evaluate VSTS or any role based product in the suite, they are required to download the VSTS trial bits. The product is very close to be released, so they are essentially providing access to CTP7 in evaluation mode.

New Features

There are a few small (but important!) features that have been put into CTP7 (along with continued bug fixing and performance improvements of course). The first one is the ability to control how many warnings / errors you want to see at one time in your error and warnings tool window. If you select Tools->Options... and then select Database Tools->Design-time Validation Database, you'll see this dialog:

Max Errors Option

Fill in whatever number you'd like. The default is 200.

Along the same lines, the ability to suppress warnings via a text box on the Build tab of your database project was put as well. Just type in a comma separated list of warning you do not want to see in your Error List window (don't include the "TSD" prefix in the text box, just the numbers).

Suppress Warnings

Another feature was squeezed in is the ability to assign different properties to individual objects in your project that differ from the default properties specified in the database project properties tab (right click on the database project node and select "Properties"). Specifically, CTP7 allows you to override the project settings that control the ANSI Nulls and Quoted Identifiers settings. See the image below.

Object level property overrides

The great team are committed to preserving compatibility between projects created in CTP6 on up, all the way through RTM. Great Work!!