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Adding and Modifying Bugs, Tasks, and Other Work Items

When you create a work item, the new work item form opens and might be populated with some default values. You can define or modify a work item by changing the value of one or more fields. In Team Foundation, different types of fields are used to store different types of data. The following list contains some of the field types that Team Foundation uses: 

  • Text field: Accepts any text. The project administrator can define a maximum number of characters. The formatting toolbar appears above each text box in which text formatting is available. The set of text boxes that support text formatting varies depending on the work item type.

  • Drop-down list: Accepts only the values that a project administrator defines in the drop-down list.

  • Date field: Accepts a specific Coordinated Universal Time (UTC) moment in time, for example 1/23/2009, 6:00:00 PM.

  • Long text: Accepts text of any length with limited text formatting.

  • History field: Records comments chronologically. You can add an entry to this field, but you cannot change previous entries.

You can add new work items, edit existing work items, and add links and attachments to work items to track an iteration, release, or project. The state of a work item indicates your team's progress. The state of a work item can vary depending on the type of work item. For example, a bug work item could start as Active, become Resolved, and then become Closed. The flow of work items through the different states may vary, depending on your team's project process template.

You can change the state of a work item to reflect the actual work, so that you can track progress against your project goals. For more information about the many ways you can use work items to support your team's project, see What's New in Tracking Work Items.

You can perform most tasks, but not all of them, from any one of the Team Foundation client programs. For more information, see Working with Team Foundation Clients.

Before you create and modify work items, you may want to review how to customize types of work items and types of links, especially if your project requirements differ from those provided by the process templates that were included with Team Foundation. After you create your work items, you can create relationships among them for the purposes of tracking dependencies or to view hierarchies. Other tasks of interest include, finding work items and scheduling and assigning work item tasks by using Office Project. For more information, see the Related Tasks in the table later in this topic. The following table contains a list of common tasks that you can perform:

Common tasks

Supporting content

Create a work item or modify an existing work item. You can create a work item by using the new work item form, copy an existing work item and modify it, or create a work item that is automatically linked from an existing work item.

You can create a work item or modify an existing one in any one of the client programs. However, the capabilities of the Office Excel client make it well-suited to these tasks.

Perform a bulk addition of work items or update existing work items. You can use Office Excel to add new work items, modify them, link them to each other and to other items, and publish them to the work item database. You can add or update many work items at the same time, and the capabilities of the Office Excel client make it well-suited to these tasks.

Print work item data. You can print a work item form or a list of work items.

Related tasks

Supporting content

Create and customize work item objects. You can customize the work items that are included with the product, add new types of work items, and also customize link types.

Create relationships among work items. You can add related or hierarchical links to work items to track dependencies and identify risks.

Share information by linking to files or Web pages or by attaching files to a work item. You can add a hyperlink from a work item to a page or a document on a Web site. You can attach, open, and remove files from work items, such as, an e-mail thread, document, image, log file, or other item.

Find work items or generate a list of work items. You can use work item queries to generate a list that contains work items that you want to modify, create links to, or generate a report.

Schedule and assign work item tasks. You can use the scheduling and planning tools in Office Project to create, modify, and update a subset of tasks that are stored in the Team Foundation database.

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