Stories about Software


Connecting to TFS Server with Different Credentials

Hello, all. My apologies for the unannounced posting hiatus. I’ve recently started a new employment venture and I was also on vacation last week, touring the Virgina/Pennsylvania/DC area. Going forward, I’m going to be doing more web-related stuff and probably be a little more of a jack of all trades, so stay tuned for posts along those lines.

Today, I’m going to post under “lessons learned” for getting rid of an annoyance. Every once in awhile I have occasion to connect to a TFS Server using different credentials from those with which I have logged in. Whenever I do this, I am prompted for credentials when connecting to source control, which can be fairly annoying. Well, thanks to Mark Smith for a recent tip for how to avoid this.

In Windows 7/Server, go to the Control Panel and choose the “Credential Manager”. In a strange quirk, “Credential Manager” isn’t actually visible in the default control panel view, and so you have to click “View By” and select something other than “Category”. Once you’ve done this, you should see the Credential Manager.

In Credential Manager, go to “Add a Windows Credential” and enter the computer name, along with your login credentials for it. You’ll probably want to include the domain, so your username will be YOURDOMAIN\YOURUSERNAME. The domain isn’t strictly necessary if both logins are on the same domain, but I think a common scenario is you’re logged in to the local machine and connecting to a TFS server on a domain somewhere.

Once you’re done, you might need to restart Visual Studio. (Truthfully, I don’t know because I had already closed it when I was doing this).

Richard Banks has posted this same process with screenshots (minus the bit about Credential Manager not showing up by default).

And, that’s it. Spend 30 seconds doing it and save yourself daily or even more frequent annoyance from here forward. Cheers!


Upgrading TFS from SQLExpress

Back Story

Some time back, I setup Team Foundation Server (TFS) on a server machine more or less dedicated to the cause. This was to test drive it to consider it as a replacement for legacy source control, requirements management, deployment, etc. Since it was a trial, run, I opted for keeping setup simpler initially, reasoning that I could expand later if I so chose. As a result, I didn’t bother with Sharepoint setup initially, and I allowed the default installation of a database, which was SQLExpress.

Once I got used to the features of the basic installation, I wanted to test out the more advanced ones, but this has proven annoyingly difficult. Setting up Sharepoint and trying to retrofit it on existing projects was an enormous hassle, and I wound up having to delete my old projects and ‘recrate’ them with Sharepoint. Granted, these were playpen sorts of projects, but there was actual work in them and they were useful — just not primetime. So, losing them would be a hassle. And besides, it’s kind of hard to fully test a system without using it to do something useful.

After letting the dust settle a bit on that annoyance, I decided I’d switch from SQLExpress to SQL Standard to get the full benefit of TFS reporting services (via SQL reporting services). This was another huge pain point, and I’m going to document below what I had to do. Basically, it involved backing up all the SQL Express databases, installing SQL Server 2008 standard, and importing those backups. This guide is by no means comprehensive and there are a lot of moving parts, so this isn’t exactly a walk through, but hopefully it will help save someone at least some annoyance in this battle and maybe shave a little time off. Read More