Choosing an Installation Category for TFS 2013

by garyg 4. February 2015 15:09

Install Categories

As mentioned in the previous chapter, there are scaling considerations to consider. This is especially true if you are in an existing environment that is maxed out and this update is part of your plan to add capacity. Most people however, they are looking at single server environments or close to that.

In order to satisfy the broadest audience that is the model we will follow in this book. If I get into a section where a scaling or high-availability touch point exists, I will mention it in a call out or note towards the end of the chapter. To begin with we should review the main installation types that are available. There are two broad categories that we need to see which we’ll fall into:

New Install

A new installation is the most straight forward installation type. We have no earlier versions of Team Foundation Server to contend with and other than the normal prerequisites, we can begin the installation. Here we are going to assume you are using a single server configuration and haven’t chosen scale the environment to multiple servers (see Chapter 1 for more details on scaling and performance).

Which Wizard to Use?

Once you get into the install you'll run into this choice pretty quick, so best if we talk about it prior. The Team Foundation Server Configuration Center offers you the following installation / configuration choices:

· Basic - this will install (as the name implies) just the basic services for running TFS. It will also either install SQL Express, or let you connect to existing SQL Server Standard or Enterprise but won't install them for you. You'll get Source Control, Work Item Tracking, and Build Services. You will not however get SharePoint or Reporting Services Integration configured. All default options will be selected for you.

· Standard Single Server - This wizard also is also intended for a single server with the default options. The big difference with this one is that it will also install SharePoint Foundation 2013 (or configure it), and configure SQL Server Reporting Services. This is the one recommended for most single server installs of TFS, and the one we'll walk through in this book. The big caveat with this one is that you need to use the default instance of SQL Server (which is ok most of the time, unless you are using SQL for something else that commandeered it on you). You also can't use this wizard if you want to use remote SQL, Reporting, or SharePoint servers. Additionally if you want to use Negotiate (Kerberos) authentication, or if you need to install the Application Tier onto and existing web site set it up to use a different port, you'll want to use the Advanced wizard instead.

· Advanced - If you need full control over all aspects of the install, this is the one for you. It only runs on Windows Server OS's (so no client OS installs with this one). It can do everything the Standard one can do plus support using remote SharePoint, SQL, or SQL Reporting Servers. You can also install the Application Tier on a different port, us a non-default instance of SQL Server or Reporting Services, or if you want to skip SharePoint or SQL Reporting Services integration. Additionally you can use Negotiate (Kerberos) authentication with this wizard. The only thing you wouldn’t want to use this for is just installing or reinstalling the Application Tier on its own (look below for that).

· Application Tier Only - As the name implies, it is used mainly to install an additional Application Tier (Team Foundation Server) to your existing Team Foundation deployment. You can use it on Client and Server OS's. It's also very useful for moving a TFS from one server to another and for disaster recovery. Don’t use this wizard to set up your first Team Foundation Server.

· Upgrade - This is the wizard to use to upgrade from an older Team Foundation Server version. It supports both client and server OS's. Please remember to back up your server prior to starting this wizard. This wizard has come a long way from when they introduced it in TFS 2010 but it still never fails to inspire panic since one of the first things it does is remove the old version and if it fails it will not reinstall the old one for you.

Here we will want to install using the Standard Configuration. This makes sense if you want to install Team Foundation Server on a single server with reporting and a team portal. It makes installation much simpler. The workflow we are going to follow here is very simple and I’ll detail it here in Figures 2-1, 2-2 for your reference.


Figure 2 - 1 TFS Installation Workflow


Figure 2 - 2 Items configured in a Standard Single Server installation

About the author

Gary Gauvin is a 20+ year Information Technologies industry leader, currently working as the Director of Application Lifecycle Management for CD-Adapco, a leading developer of CFD/CAE solutions. Working in both enterprise environments and small businesses, Gary enjoys bringing ROI to the organizations he works with through strategic management and getting hands-on wherever practical. Among other qualifications, Gary holds a Bachelor of Science in Information Technologies, an MBA, a PMP (Project Management Professional) certification, and PSM (Professional Scrum Master) certification.  Gary has also been recognized as a Microsoft Most Valuable Professional.

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