TFS Review

Reliable, good performance, good reporting tools, and useful for managing all of your development tasks

What is our primary use case?

It is mainly for the work item handling, which is the documentation for the development projects. We also use it for requirement handling and then following a project's progress with tasks or issues.

How has it helped my organization?

It doesn't improve the way our organization functions, but it supports the way we work. Instead of having separate Excel or other work item lists, we can just utilize the work items provided by TFS for record-keeping and monitoring the progress.

What is most valuable?

The work item feature is most valuable. It allows us to store all product requirements. We can also link the test cases to those requirements so that we know which feature has already been tested, and which one is waiting for testing. We can also couple the code reviews, unit tests, and automated tests into these requirements.

It is reliable. It has all the features and good performance. It also has reporting tools or analysis tools. 

What needs improvement?

Currently, we are looking for a solution with which we can incorporate third-party development sites or third-party project teams into the system. Because it is on-premise, it is a bit problematic because we need to have a VPN or something else in the system. A cloud-based solution would be better for us, and that's what we are looking for. Our biggest problem is the external connection, which, of course, is limited by our own IT. It would be good to have some kind of publishing service for this external connection. It might be there, and it might be that our IT is making it impossible for us.

Its template editor could be easier to use. Currently, customizing the project templates according to your needs requires some work.

For how long have I used the solution?

I have been using this solution for 15 years. I have been using its latest version for a couple of years.

What do I think about the stability of the solution?

It is reliable.

How are customer service and technical support?

I haven't actually used their support very much. I'm not really the one who is maintaining the system. 

You can find a lot of information by searching the web. There is also a community around it, and a lot of answers are available. Microsoft has its own support if needed.

How was the initial setup?

I haven't been so much involved in building up the TFS server, but I think it is rather simple. The installation is simple. There are so-called project templates that you might need to adjust according to your needs. These require some work. If you can use the default templates, then no work is needed. We have managed to adjust everything for what we needed. There were no problems that we couldn't overcome. Its template editor could be easier to use.

What about the implementation team?

It was done in-house. It is pretty easy to come up with an installer. There is nothing difficult there.

What other advice do I have?

The Team Foundation Server is now called Azure DevOps. We are using an old product. I would advise others to consider whether they need an on-premises or a cloud solution. The on-premises solution requires external developers. They can also look at the cloud option and see which product offering is better for their needs.

It is a nice system to have. You get a managed system where you can manage your development tasks easily, and you don't need to keep your own bookkeeping for tasks and backup items. They are already there in TFS. You can just use the system monthly and produce reports out of the system. For me, it was nice to see that such a tool exists.

I would rate TFS a nine out of ten. I'm pretty happy with it.

Which deployment model are you using for this solution?

**Disclosure: I am a real user, and this review is based on my own experience and opinions.
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