Forgotten, Not Gone -- Team Foundation Server

It can't be too easy to forget TFS, as you've likely been heavily involved with installing it. What? You didn't help? Well, you'll need to keep in mind these tips for maintenance.

Last time, we talked about how often times Microsoft Office SharePoint Servers (and specifically their supporting SQL Servers) get forgotten about. This time, let's talk about a SQL Server that supports another popular Microsoft product: Team Foundation Server (TFS).

With TFS, the complication of the installation process alone will likely mean the DBA was involved from the beginning. Hopefully, you were involved and you remembered to set up regular maintenance processes on the SQL Server. If not, take the time to go back and revisit the server. However, when working with a SQL Server that supports TFS, there are a couple of things to keep in mind:

SharePoint -- That's right! TFS uses a SharePoint installation to help track team activities. As such, the SQL Server hosts SharePoint databases. This means you need to be careful of the issues I noted in the first part of this series.

Additionally, you'll need to make sure those database backups are coordinated with the SharePoint backups for the TFS sites to be sure you can recover in the event of a disaster.

Express -- Often, when developers install TFS on the fly (without involving the DBAs and system administrators) they'll use the basic configuration. This usually means that SQL Express was used to host the SQL Server databases. This can prevent (or significantly hamper) your routine maintenance activities. So, you'll want to work on moving these databases to a full version of SQL. Just be careful to follow the guidelines published over at the MSDN website http://msdn.microsoft.com/en-us/library/ee175815(VS.90).aspx).

Full Text Search -- One other thing to note is that TFS uses full text search. That means it also uses full text indexes. Make sure your backup and reindexing plans account for these features being used; otherwise restoration after a critical failure could become troublesome.

That's about it for now; have fun!

About the Author

Joshua Jones is co-author of A Developer's Guide to Data Modeling for SQL Server: Covering SQL Server 2005 and 2008 (Addison-Wesley Professional, 2008) and is a principal with Denver-based Consortio Services LLC.