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Deleting Tasks and Removing Work Items That Are No Longer Participating in Synchronization

When you delete a task from Project that has been synchronized with a work item in Team Foundation, you remove the association between the task and the work item. This removal occurs after you publish the plan to Project Server and the synchronization process completes to update the changes. However, the synchronization process does not delete the corresponding work item from the team project. Work items remain stored in the database for Team Foundation. Team members can set the state of the work item to Closed.

If you want to completely remove from Team Foundation work items whose tasks have been deleted from Project, you can use the witadmin destroywi command. For more information, see Permanently Removing Work Items [witadmin].

To permanently remove work items, you must first determine the work item IDs that are assigned to each item. You can create a query that finds these items. To find items that are no longer synchronized with Project Server, you can create the query in the following table. This query finds all work items for which the Linked to Project Server field is set to No but that used to be set to Yes. The query does not find items that have not changed in the last 60 days.





Team Project




Project Server Is Linked




Project Server Is Linked

Was Ever



Changed Date


@Today - 60