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Restore Data to the Same Location

You can restore data from a backup to the same server and instance of SQL Server for Team Foundation from which that data was backed up. For example, you might want to restore a corrupted set of databases to the last known good state.


These procedures depend upon your having installed Cumulative Update 2 for TFS 2012. In addition, if your original deployment used the Enterprise or Datacenter editions of SQL Server, and you want to restore databases to a server running Standard edition, you must use a backup set that was made with SQL Server compression disabled. Unless you disable data compression, you will not be able to successfully restore Enterprise or Datacenter edition databases to a server running Standard edition. To turn off compression, follow the steps in the Microsoft Knowledge Base article.

If you want to restore data to another server or another instance of SQL Server, see Restoring a Single-Server Deployment to New Hardware [Tutorial]


If you use SharePoint Products in your deployment, when you restore data, you do not have to restore the websites that are automatically generated based on the data for each team project. The data for the team project portals is contained in the databases that you restore.

The steps to restore data to the same server or servers vary based on how Team Foundation Server is installed and configured. For simplicity, the procedures in this topic are structured for a moderately complex deployment of Team Foundation Server, as the following illustration shows:

Example moderate topology with databases

If your topology does not exactly match this example, you might have to adjust the steps in this procedure to follow it successfully. For example, if you have a deployment where all components are installed on a single physical server, you would perform all procedures on that server. If databases for team project collections are deployed on more than one server, you must perform the steps to restore each collection database on the appropriate server. For more information about which components might be deployed on each server, see the following topics:

In this topic

  1. Required Permissions

  2. Rename Databases You Want To Restore

  3. Restore Team Foundation Databases

  4. Update All Service Accounts

  5. Restore the Warehouse

  6. Clear the Data Cache On Servers

  7. Restart Services that Team Foundation Server Uses

  8. Refresh the Data Cache on Client Computers

Required Permissions

To perform this procedure, you must be a member of the following groups or have the following permissions:

  • A member of the Administrators security group on the server or servers that are running the administration console for Team Foundation.

  • Either a member of the SQL Server System Administrator security group or your SQL Server Perform Back Up and Create Maintenance Plan permission must be set to Allow on the instance of SQL Server that hosts the databases.

  • A member of the sysadmin security group for the database instance for Team Foundation and for the Analysis Services instance of the warehouse database.

  • An authorized user of the TFS_Warehouse database.

  • A member of the TFSEXECROLE database role.

  • If the deployment uses SharePoint Products, a member of the Farm Administrators group for the farm to which the SharePoint Products databases are being restored.

In addition to these permissions, you might have to address the following requirements on a computer that is running Windows Server 2008:

  • To follow a command-line procedure, you might have to open an elevated Command Prompt by clicking Start, right-clicking Command Prompt, and then clicking Run as Administrator.

  • To follow a procedure that requires Internet Explorer, you might have to start it as an administrator by clicking Start, clicking All Programs, right-clicking Internet Explorer, and then clicking Run as administrator.

  • To access Report Manager, reports, or websites for SQL Server Reporting Services, you might have to add these sites to the list of trusted sites in Internet Explorer or start Internet Explorer as an administrator.

For more information, see the following page on the Microsoft website: User Account Control.

Before you can use the Restore wizard to restore a database that Team Foundation Server, you must first stop it, and then rename it.

To stop databases that Team Foundation Server uses

  1. Choose Start, All Programs, Microsoft SQL Server, and then choose SQL Server Management Studio.


    For more information about how to restore databases, see the following page on the Microsoft website: Implementing Restore Scenarios for SQL Server Databases.

    The Connect to Server dialog box opens.

  2. In Server type, choose Database Engine.

  3. In Server name, choose or type the name of the data-tier server and database instance, and then choose Connect.


    If SQL Server is installed on a cluster, the server name is the name of the cluster and not the computer name.

    SQL Server Management Studio opens.

  4. Expand the Databases node to show the list of databases that make up the data tier for Team Foundation.

  5. Open the context menu for each database you want to restore, and take it offline.

  6. After the database is offline, rename the database following the guidance for your version of SQL Server. Give the database a name that indicates it is the old version of the database you will replace with the restored version. For example, you might rename TFS_DefaultCollection to TFS_DefaultCollection_Old.

You can restore data for Team Foundation Server by using the Restore wizard in the administration console in TFS. The Restore wizard also restores the encryption key used for reporting.


The Restore wizard is part of the Scheduled Backups set of features available in Cumulative Update 2 for TFS 2012. If you do not see that node in the administration console, make sure that you have installed that update before you proceed.

To restore databases

  1. Open the administration console for TFS and navigate to Scheduled Backups to start the Restore wizard.

    Start the Restore wizard
  2. Specify the path to the backup set and choose the set you want to use for restoration.

    Choose the network path, then the restore set
  3. Complete the wizard and restore the databases.

    The databases are restored to the new server

You must update the service account for Team Foundation Server (TFSService) and the data sources account (TFSReports). Even if these accounts have not changed, you must update the information to ensure that the identity and the format of the accounts are appropriate.

To update service accounts

  1. On the server that is running SQL Server Reporting Services, open Computer Management, and start the following components if they are not already started:

    • ReportServer or ReportServer$InstanceName (application pool)

    • SQL Server Reporting Services (TFSINSTANCE)

  2. On the application-tier server, open a Command Prompt window, and change directories to Drive:\%programfiles%\ Microsoft Team Foundation Server 11.0\Tools.

  3. At the command prompt, enter the following command to add the service account for Team Foundation, where DatabaseName is the name of the configuration database (by default, TFS_Configuration):

    TfsConfig Accounts /add /AccountType:ApplicationTier /account:AccountName

    For more information about how to use this command, see Accounts Command.

  4. Use the Accounts command to add the data sources account for the report server and the proxy account for Team Foundation Server Proxy, if your deployment uses these resources.

You can rebuild the data warehouse instead of restoring the TFS_Warehouse and TFS_Analysis databases. You will require a significant amount of time to rebuild the warehouse if your deployment contains a lot of data. However, that strategy helps ensure that all data is properly synchronized. When you rebuild the warehouse, Team Foundation Server creates an instance of it, which you must then process to populate it by using data from the operational stores.


If you restored the TFS_Warehouse and TFS_Analysis databases in the previous section, you do not have to perform the following procedure.

To rebuild the warehouse

  1. On the server that is running the application-tier services for Team Foundation, open a Command Prompt window, and change directories to Drive:\%programfiles%\Microsoft Team Foundation Server 11.0\Tools.

  2. Enter the following command:

    TFSConfig rebuildwarehouse /all /ReportingDataSourcePassword:Password

    where Password is the password for the data sources account for Reporting Services (TFSReports).

  3. Wait until the command is successfully completed.


    If the command is not completed successfully, you should verify that you have all required permissions. For more information, see Troubleshooting the Data Warehouse.

  4. On the report server, open Internet Explorer and enter the following string in the Address bar:


    For VirtualDirectory, enter the virtual directory for Internet Information Services (IIS) that was specified when Team Foundation Server was installed. By default, this directory is named tfs.

    The WarehouseControlWebService page opens.


    The Microsoft Team Foundation Server Application Pool must be running for the Warehouse Control Web service to be available.

  5. Choose GetProcessingStatus, and then choose Invoke.

    Important noteImportant

    The service should return a value of Idle for all jobs, which indicates that the cube is not being processed. If a different value is returned, repeat this step until Idle is returned for all jobs.

  6. On the WarehouseControlWebService page, choose ProcessAnalysisDatabase, and then choose Invoke.

    A browser window opens. The service returns True when it successfully starts to process the cube and False if it is not successful or if the cube is currently being processed.

  7. To determine when the cube has been processed, return to the WarehouseControlWebService page, choose GetProcessingStatus, and then choose Invoke.

    Processing has completed when the GetProcessingStatus service returns a value of Idle for all jobs.

  8. On the application-tier server for Team Foundation, open Computer Management, and start the Visual Studio Team Foundation Background Job Service.

Each application-tier server in your deployment of Team Foundation uses a file cache so that users can quickly download files from the data-tier server. When you restore a deployment, you should clear this cache on each application-tier server. Otherwise, mismatched file IDs might cause problems when users download files from version control. If your deployment uses Team Foundation Server Proxy, you must also clear the data cache on each server that is configured as a proxy.


By clearing the data caches, you can help prevent the download of incorrect versions of files in version control. You should routinely do this unless you are replacing all hardware in your deployment as part of your restoration. If you are replacing all hardware, you can skip this procedure.

To clear the data cache

  1. On a server that is running the application-tier services for Team Foundation or that is configured with Team Foundation Server Proxy, open a Command Prompt window and change directories to Drive:\%programfiles%\Microsoft Team Foundation Server 11.0\Application Tier\Web Services\_tfs_data.

  2. Delete everything in the _tfs_data directory.

  3. Repeat these steps for each application-tier server and each server that is running Team Foundation Server Proxy in your deployment.

After you restore the data, you must restart the services to return the server to an operational state.

To restart services that Team Foundation Server uses

  1. On the server that is running the application-tier services for Team Foundation, open a Command Prompt window, and change directories to Drive:\%programfiles%\Microsoft Team Foundation Server 11.0\Tools.

  2. Enter the following command:

    TFSServiceControl unquiesce

    For more information, see TFSServiceControl Command.

To refresh the cache for tracking work items on client computers

  1. On the new server, open Internet Explorer.

  2. In the Address bar, enter the following address to connect to the ClientService web service:



    Even if you are logged on with administrative credentials, you might need to start Internet Explorer as an administrator, and you might be prompted for your credentials.

  3. Choose StampWorkitemCache, and then choose Invoke.


    The StampWorkitemCache method returns no data.

To refresh the version control cache on client computers

  1. On the client computer, open a Command Prompt window with administrative permissions, and change directories to Drive:\Program Files (x86)\Microsoft Visual Studio 11.0\Common7\IDE.

  2. At the command prompt, enter the following command, including the URL of the collection, which includes the server name and the port number of the new server:

    tf workspaces /collection:http://ServerName:Port/VirtualDirectoryName/CollectionName

    In the example deployment, one of Jill's developers needs to refresh the version control cache for a project that is a member of the DefaultCollection collection, which is hosted in the FabrikamPrime deployment of Team Foundation Server. He types the following string:

    tf workspaces /collection:http://FabrikamPrime:8080/tfs/DefaultCollection

    For more information, see Workspaces Command.