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Customizing a Team Project

When you create a new team project, the team project settings, tools, and content are determined by the process template selected in the New Team Project Wizard. As you work with the team project, you may find that the initial settings no longer meet your needs and you need to customize the team project. For example, if you used the MSF for Agile Software Development process template when you created your team project, you may find that the Contributors group created by the template is too general and that you need more role-specific groups like Developer and Tester. Or you may find that the default check-in policies are useful, but you need to provide a check-in policy of your own as well. There are several ways in which you can refine or otherwise customize your team project.

If the default groups are not adequate or appropriate, you can update those groups or create new groups. You can also add or remove individual users to a group or grant and revoke permissions for a group. For more information on customizing groups and permissions, see Managing Permissions.

You can customize work item types to fit your workflow or different types of work items that you want to track. For example, you can:

  • Add fields.

  • Rename fields.

  • Restrict the list of allowed values for fields.

  • Change the states and supported state transitions.

  • Make fields required or read-only.

  • Make one field dependent on another.

  • Automatically populate field values.

  • Re-arrange the appearance of information on the form.

  • Change which Microsoft Project column a certain field is mapped to.

  • Build a work item type.

You can also create your own public or private queries. For more information on customizing work item types in the process templates and then creating new team projects using the updated template, see Customizing Process Templates. For more information on customizing work item types directly in an existing team project, see Customizing Work Item Types for Team Foundation

If the default check-in notes are not adequate or appropriate, you can add or remove check-in note fields, or make some fields required and others not. If the default check-in policies are not adequate or appropriate, you can add, update, or delete individual check-in policies. For more information about what you can do with check-in policies and how to create them, see Working with Check-In Policies and Notes.

When you create a new team project using either of the Microsoft Visual Studio Team System process templates, the team project does not include a classification structure for either areas or iterations. If you use a third-party process template, the areas and iterations for the team project may not be set. You can update the structure of your team project by hierarchically breaking out its features/components by areas or iterations. By providing a hierarchy, team members can for example, file work items and test cases under those hierarchies. For more information on establishing areas and iterations for your team project, see Setting Initial Project Areas or Iterations.

If your team project uses a team portal, it most likely is the central focus for communicating information to team members and others in your organization. You can change the appearance and behavior of the portal or its contents. For more information on customizing the team portal in the process templates and then creating new team projects using the updated template, see Using the Team Project Portal. For more information on customizing an existing team portal, see the online Help available from the team portal menu.

The process guidance explains all the roles, forms, reports, and workflow used in the team project. You can edit the process guidance that comes with Team Foundation Server to customize the processes your team should follow. For more information on customizing the process guidance, see MSF for Agile Software Development and MSF for CMMI Process Development.

You can create your own custom reports using Business Intelligence Development Studio, the SQL Server 2005 Reporting Services designer, or extracting the reports and editing their XML manually. For more information on customizing the reports for your team project, see How to: Create a Detailed Report for Team System using Report Designer.

Each team project can have its own build types. For more information on customizing build types for your team, see Working with Build Definitions in Team Foundation Build.

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