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Team Foundation Server (TFS) in the Cloud: Source control and much more

Use Cycle


I recently started a development project on my own that involved not only me but others within my team. I was building an internal tracking application, and decided to use an (Agile) methodology. Every company typically has a full set of Source Control systems in place. But using each other’s systems requires logins, firewalls, proxies, and so on. So we decided to use the Team Foundation Server (TFS) to run the entire project from the “Cloud.”


TFS Logo


The process was very simple. The account login provided a web interface to allow people to join the team. Each of us happened to have a account or an account tied to a address. At this point, I was able to invite those who wanted to join, and they received a link to the account that looked similar to this: [].


Clicking on the link opened a Visual Studio 2012 page allowing them to navigate from the Main menu to the Team page and on to the Connect to Team Foundation Server. The following menu appeared:


TFS Dialog


From here, they connected to the TFS in the Cloud as if they were connected locally. They had no need to worry about infrastructure, and backups were already in place as well. The best part was that they were able to use a variety of languages and target a variety of platforms, from C# to Python, and from Windows to Android.


Benefits of TFS in the Cloud


  • Works with your current tools and languages

You can code in C# or Java, HTML or C++; you can check any kind of file into source control. You can integrate with Visual Studio and Eclipse for developers who use an IDE.


  • Manages source code on- and off-line

Local workspaces store a local copy of your code so you can work when you’re offline. When you’re connected, check in your code and store it in our Cloud, with full history and version control, to track and roll back changes.


  • Allows continuous unit testing

Defines unit tests that run automatically after you check in, alerting you to bad code before it breaks your build.


  • Performs code reviews; requires Visual Studio Premium 2012 or above

Reviews changes and gives feedback with the rest of your team in real time using code review functionality in Visual Studio.


  • Merges code merging for check-in conflicts

Resolves conflicts and makes informed decisions when merging complex or difficult sets of changes with 3-way merge editing tools.


  • Manages your context to preserve your focus; requires Visual Studio Premium 2012 or above

Uses My Work view to quickly switch between different tasks while preserving your open windows, layout, and modified code.


  • Allows for team collaboration and agile planning

Tools for teams to iterate quickly and stay connected, task board, backlog management, and capacity planning


  • Builds, Tests, Deploys!

Uses the Cloud to build your project. Builds projects using HP Cloud-hosted build service.


Validates changes across the team by building your project at regular intervals, and hosts “official” builds that keep your team on the same page. When you’re ready to deploy, you can publish to the platform of your choice.


In an era where budgets are constrained, TFS Cloud solutions promote the same solution as a Team Foundation Server on site with less hassle. Drop me a line below and let me know how TFS in the Cloud could help your enterprise.


Be on the lookout for our up-and-coming blogs on Cloud and Mobility. And you can always check out our previous Knowledge Matters articles on the HP Applications Services blog.

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About the Author
Craig has been with HP for 10 years working on the solutioning side as a Solution Architect. Primarily works with Microsoft technologies and...

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