Create your backlog and tasks using Project
Updated: July 15, 2016
If Microsoft Project is your preferred tool for tacking projects, you can use it to create your backlog, schedule tasks, assign resources, and track work that is also tracked in Team Foundation Serer (TFS). You can use Project while your development team uses the tools they prefer, all while sharing information transparently.
You can also manage projects using Project Professional and Project Server synchronized with TFS, but you can't use Project Professional to both publish and refresh to TFS and synchronize with TFS.
If you don't have Microsoft Project 2007 or later, install it.
If you haven't installed Visual Studio or Team Explorer, you'll need to install one of these versions to get the Team Foundation add-in to Project.
In Project, start with a blank worksheet. If you don't see the Team ribbon (or the Team menu if you use Project 2007) see step 2.
Another way to start is to open a backlog query in Team Explorer and from the context menu, choose Open in Microsoft Excel.
If the Team ribbon no longer appears, you might need to re-enable it.
Connect to TFS and the team project that you want to plan. If you can't connect, get added as a team member.
If it’s your first time connecting to TFS from Project, you might have to add the name of your TFS to the list of recognized servers.
Project is now bound to your team project. The Team Foundation Gantt view supports entry and display of several TFS fields.
Add task information and then publish the project. To add a work item, specify the Title, Work Item Type, Publish and Refresh, and any other required fields. Resize and move columns using standard Project methods.
Set the Publish and Refresh field for a task to Yes if you want to have a work item created for it in TFS. For example, set user stories, backlog items, and tasks to be published and refreshed. However, any summary tasks that you create to group tasks or to assign milestones, set Publish and Refresh to No.
Notice how IDs are now assigned to your work items.
Optionally, you can use , select a work item query, and add work items from TFS to your project plan.
Assign resources to tasks. Or, leave that field blank for the development team to assign.
Although Project supports allocation of more than one resource to a task, TFS does not. If a task requires more than one resource to complete, divide the task into subtasks and assign one resource to each subtask. Only assign a TFS team member as a resource to those tasks that you will publish.
Specify resources by their display names from Active Directory Domain Services (AD DS). If you assign a resource by its alias or other name, you risk incurring validation errors.
Save your project plan to retain scheduling and other data that TFS doesn't store.
When you indent tasks and then publish your plan, you create parent-child links between work items. Tasks will show up on the task board when they are assigned to the current sprint.
To see the parent-child links that you just created, open Links and Attachments.
When you link two tasks and publish your plan, TFS creates predecessor-successor links between the two work items.
Although TFS tracks predecessor-successor dependencies as work item links, it does not track dependency types, lead and lag time, or other constraints that Project does.
To enter data into other TFS fields, switch to the Team Foundation Task Sheet.
This view displays all the TFS fields that have been mapped to Project.
Optionally, you can add a mapped TFS field as a column to the Team Foundation Gantt view. To see which TFS fields are mapped, open Column Mappings.
To add more TFS fields or change the way fields are mapped, see Customize the Microsoft Project field mapping file.
You can manage your project plan using Project and all the features that Project provides. Because you and other team members can modify TFS work items from the web portal, Excel, Project, and Team Explorer, follow these tips to manage your work effectively:
Adding TFS fields
You can only add fields to your Project plan that are defined in the Microsoft Project mapping file.
You can add any TFS field to your Excel worksheet that is listed in the Choose Columns dialog, subject to Excel limitations on text length.
You specify the Publish or Refresh field for individual tasks. Also, field attributes defined in the Microsoft Project mapping file affect how fields are published and refreshed.
All work items are subject to publish and refresh.
You can create and modify parent-child links or predecessor-successor links between work items.
Using the tree list view, you can create and modify parent-child links.
A: For team members to be able to view or modify Project fields from a Team Foundation client, you must customize both the definition file for the task work item type and update the Microsoft Project Mapping file. For resources, see Schedule projects using Microsoft Project 2010.
A: You can change how Team Foundation fields map to fields in Microsoft Project, and you can change how specific fields are published. See The Microsoft Project Field Mapping File.