Thursday 18 October 2012

Quick overview of TFS Preview

I spent last week playing with shiny/new Web technologies and I needed a place where I could store my todo list and keep my code. I could’ve used Git + Trello but I wanted to give TFS Preview a try so I created a project there, converted my todo list into user stories and connected my repo with my Azure account for automated deployments. After a week of using TFS Preview this is what I’ve learnt:
  • It was very easy to configure automated deployments to Azure
  • The performance of web portal ranged from acceptable to painfully slow.
  • The UI is decent and it’s easy to execute all the basic tasks like add user story, add bug, look up a build
  • Burndown chart worked out of the box
  • Scrum board is simple and does the job
  • Builds would take up to couple of minutes to start even if the build queue was empty
  • Total build time was a bit unpredictable, ranged from 60s to 160s for the same code.
  • Adding support for nUnit was more hassle than I anticipated
  • Story boarding in PowerPoint is not integrated with TFS so you can’t push files directly from PowerPoint to TFS
  • There is no Wiki
  • Build log is as “useful” as it was in TFS 2010
All in all it is a decent start and I hope that Brian Harry’s team will keep deploying often so every week will welcome us with something new.


You actually can specify how many builds you want to keep. For some reason when I clicked on the number of builds to preserve it didn't change from a label into a drop down list.


  1. Hi Pawel

    Great constructive suggestions in that post. Any chance you could re-order them to be in the order of pain... or order of importance?


  2. Glad you liked it.

    It would be hard to apply such an order because my experiment was not a real project. I can imagine that unpredictable build time can be annoying if you have a team of several people but it's not really an issue for one person. Same applies to lack of Wiki. If you are Scrum master then the performance of the portal is might be an issue but as a developer you are not affected that much.

  3. Hi,
    I have a few project on it, It's just great but it's not very practical when service is down for maintenance or if you have to work temporary disconnected. TFS is very good with constant and perfect connexion, but the client part need some optimization for the online service. Open a file for edit when service is unavailable can't take one minute or more...