TFS 2010 Compatibility with Older Clients and Migration Guidelines


in order to make your upgrade to TFS 2010 easier.  Unfortunately, the changes in 2010 are significant enough it will require patches/updates to older clients to work fully.  The follow post explains the compatibility philosophy and details the issues you might run into.

The patch for VS 2008 Team Explorer clients is available now here:

Migration Guidance

If you’re thinking about migrating to TFS, but don’t know where to start, then check out the Migration Guidance Document. This document outlines many of the common scenarios for migrating data into TFS, and it provides recommended options for each scenario.
If you’re looking for migration tools or partner services, please also see the TFS Migration and Integration Solutions page on MSDN

Upgrade vs. Migration

One common area of confusion is around the definition of "migration", especially as to how it compares with the term "upgrade". Below is an explanation of how these concepts differ (also see the aforementioned Migration Guidance Document).

  • Migration – For this project, and for TFS in general, we use the term "migration" to refer to moving data between two TFS server instances. Migration is done through the APIs of TFS by using external tools, and is a lossy data transfer (see the Limitations page for details).
  • Upgrade – We would define "upgrade" as the fully supported, in-the-box process of changing to the next version of TFS (e.g. upgrading from TFS 2005 to TFS 2008). Upgrades are done at the database level, and are full fidelity, meaning there is no data loss.


TFS is currently comprised of several major feature areas, including, version control, work item tracking, build automation, reporting, and SharePoint. At this point in time, the TFS Integration Platform is scoped to only support a the following TFS features:

  • Version Control – This includes the migration of all files and folders, and support for preserving changeset contents. The following changetypes are currently supported: add, edit, rename, delete, branch, merge, and type.
  • Work Item Tracking – This includes the migration of all work item revisions, fields, in-use areas and iterations, and links (including links to changesets).

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