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TFS Preview: Creating an Account & Projects

Recently did I acquire the key to TFS Preview from Microsoft when I started exploring TFS and its features.  Not much is known about the pricing plans, but so far as the functionality and user-experience is concerned it seems to be really impressive.

So here goes my first blog on TFS Preview and how to get started and the area of concentration will be SCRUM – Agile Development.

Creating a TFSPreview Account

If you want to try TFS I would recommend you apply for a key on http://www.tfspreview.com/ and if you are lucky, you might get one! There is a short video on the same website that will brief you on the features of TFS and will set the marketing pitch right! So do watch that!

Once registered, TFSPreview website will ask you for a domain name that will be of the format


and I chose mine to be https://ganshani.tfspreview.com/  For obvious reasons, you won’t have access to my URL.  This URL is your repository of projects and can be accessed by restricted set of users ONLY.  Since this repository is hosted on Microsoft Live platform, every user of this repository needs to have Live Id.  That is one reason why you would get an authentication page like one below


Out of curiosity, I am sure some of you would have tried accessing my TFS site and would have found a page with a really BIG RED sad smiley


So once you have acquired access or have a website of your own, you can create a new project

Creating a new project

The homepage currently has very limited options and that is because you do not have any project/team setup.  So let’s create a team project by clicking the menu item displayed below


This will bring up a pop-up that has 3 fields.

Project Name – Let’s say the project name is CInject. This name should uniquely identify the project

Description – The description is optional.

Process Template – The process templates dropdown as shown in the picture below has 3 options.  Let’s understand the options available -

  • Microsoft Visual Studio Scrum 2.0 – Preview 3 – This template (is default and) is best for teams practising the SCRUM methodology. For this project, let’s select SCRUM template.
  • MSF for Agile Software Development 6.0 – Preview 3 – This template is best for projects using iterative or incremental models of Agile development.
  • MSF for CMMI Process Improvement 6.0 – Preview 3 – This template is best for projects that have to comply to CMMI level processes such as audits, traceability, documentation, etc.


Once you click on Create Project, the creation is queued and in around 5-10 minutes your project is created.

Oh, hold on.  We can rather say “Your cloud-based TFS server is ready and a project is created on it”  You can check the status of project creation by clicking on Browse Projects


So here’s your project and you are only member in the project.  You can click on Navigate to view the project dashboard which at this moment will not have anything relevant.

In the next article, we will explore creating project teams and assigning tasks to the team members.

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