TFS 2010 server licensing: It’s included in MSDN subscriptions

[UPDATE 2/10/2010]  You can now get the official Visual Studio 2010 Licensing whitepaper, which also covers TFS, Lab, and IntelliTrace. That is the best resource for understanding the licensing.

Another big piece of news with the release of VS and TFS 2010 betas yesterday is the changes to TFS licensing for 2010 that make it even more affordable.  Here are the comments from Doug Seven, our licensing guru in marketing, on Soma's beta 2 announcement post.

Team Foundation Server 2010 will be included in the MSDN subscription that comes with Visual Studio 2010 Professional, Premium, Ultimate, and Test Elements. This copy of Team Foundation Server in licensed for unlimited development and test use (as is all MSDN software) and licensed for one production deployment. These MSDN subscriptions also include one CAL.

Team Foundation Server has three installation choices - Basic, Advanced and Custom.  You will be able to install this either on your client machine (very similar to client side SCM such as VSS) or on a server machine just like TFS 2008.

Team Foundation Server will also be available in retail for around $500 USD and will include a license term allowing up to five (5) named users without CALs to use Team Foundation Server. To grow to more than five users, you will need to have CALs for additional users beyond five users. This enables small teams of five or fewer to get up and running on Team Foundation Server for as little as $500 USD.

Of course having Visual Studio 2010 with MSDN means you can get Team Foundation Server up and running at no additional cost.

You can also hear more in an interview with Doug Seven conducted by three MVPS: The Ultimate Announcement Show.

I'm not a licensing expert, so I can't answer detailed questions about licensing.  I did want to make sure everyone sees this.  It's a really exciting change.

[UPDATE 10/20/09]  I wanted to add a clarification from Doug around the CALs and SQL.  There is a licensing whitepaper in the works that should be out soon.

Retail TFS does not come with 5-CALs. It has a EULA exception allowing up to 5 users without CALs. The primary difference is that CALs can be used to access multiple TFS instances. A EULA exception cannot. In other words, buying two TFS retail licenses does NOT give me rights for 10-users on one instance of TFS. It gives me rights to two instances with 5-users each. To add more than 5 users, you must have CALs for all additional users.

TFS also still includes a SQL Server license for use with TFS.  In other words, you can't use the SQL license included with TFS to do anything other than to support TFS.

Comments (78)

  1. JeffK says:

    Great information! With the knowledge that TFS 2010 beta 2 comes with a go live license, will this also apply to the ‘retail, 5 CAL version’ of TFS? In other words, when the beta 2 is available to the public later this week, can a TFS instance be brought up using these bits and converted to the retail, 5 CAL version of TFS when the RTM of TFS is available at retail?

  2. buckh says:

    JeffK, yes you can use TFS beta 2 and then upgrade that to the RTM version.


  3. RichN says:

    Will the cost of a CAL be less than one fifth of the cost of the $500 server license? For example, if I use my MSDN subscription to set up a production deployment of TFS, will it be cheaper to buy all the non MSDN subscribers using the server CALs, or will I be better off buying an additional server license and using the 5 user EULA exception that comes with this?

  4. buckh says:

    RichN, it is my understanding that you will need to buy the CALs because the EULA exception applies only once per server.  You cannot "transfer" the 5 unlicensed users from one server that you own to another.  This I believe was one of the reasons that the server comes with the EULA exception rather than 5 CALs.  We wanted to make it very affordable for small teams to adopt it, but there is admittedly a jump to go to that sixth user if that user is not an MSDN subscriber.


  5. jon says:

    Are there any techincal limitations if we purchase 2 TFS retail licenses to prevent the CALS from connecting from 1 TFS Server to another TFS server.

    If there aren’t technical challenges…are there audit tools that might report which CAL was used where?

    Licensing and compliance is always a nightmare so I’m hoping we don’t have to track all of these CALs…we just want users to be able to connect to whatever TFS they need to work on.

  6. Thys says:

    Can the CAL that is included in MSDN be used for any TFS instance?


  7. buckh says:

    Jon, there are no product limitations on the number of CALs you can purchase and use with the servers that you own.

    Unfortunately, we don’t have any licensing audit tools at this time.  Of course such a tool would make it easier for you to keep track of compliance.  It is something that I hope we address in the future.


  8. buckh says:

    Thys, the CAL can be used to access any TFS server that you own.  If you need to access TFS servers owned by others, you will need to have a CAL for each one.


  9. Alan says:

    With a dual tier configuration can you use an additional VS MSDN subscription to licence the SQL Server backend for TFS only use?

  10. buckh says:

    Alan, the SQL Server from a single MSDN TFS license may be used for a single TFS instance, whether in a single machine config or dual tier config.


  11. Joe says:

    Is there anywhere I can go for more information on the SQL license included with TFS?  It seems in 2008 that only the ‘Workgroup’ edition of TFS included the standalone SQL Standard license (for TFS use only) – and the TFS 2010 license text says ‘If your edition of the server software includes other SQL Server 2008 technology’ (under section 8.b.)… it’s not clear to me whether the TFS we’ll get with our MSDN Premium subscription will allow us to use SQL Standard or only SQL Express.  We currently run SQL 2005 for all other products and don’t have immediate plans to upgrade – so if we could set up a standalone SQL 2008 Standard box for TFS only, and be covered by the TFS license, that’d be ideal.

    Basically, I’m getting things installed now under the go-live license and we hope to start using it ASAP – but I want to be sure I’m not shooting myself in the foot.  I’m doing initial tests with SQL Express, but I’d like to be able to use the reporting features, and also know we’ll hit the 4GB limit of Express.  If I install SQL Standard, I have to use a license key – all I have is my MSDN ‘test’ keys.

  12. Jeremy Bridges says:

    Will the TFS license included in the MSDN subscription still have the TFS 2008 licensing exception for defect tracking?

  13. buckh says:

    Joe, I have asked and will get back to you.  Sorry for missing your question earlier.

    Jeremy, yes, that is still there.  Managing it is now easier in 2010, as you can add folks to a special group so that they get redirected automatically to the simpler web UI if they fall into that category.  You no longer have to hand out two URLs.


  14. buckh says:

    Joe, here’s the answer on the licensing question from Doug Seven.  Sorry for the very late response!

    A restricted use license for SQL Server 2008 Std Ed. is provided with TFS 2010. You are allowed one production installation of TFS 2010 w/ SQL Server 2008 Std. Ed using your MSDN keys.

    The Basic Configuration of TFS 2010 will install SQLL Server 2008 Express if you prefer to use that.

    TFS 2008 provided a restricted use license for SQL Server 2005 Std Ed (both Workgroup Edition and the full licensed version).


  15. Jim Liddell says:

    Do you know how this will work for organisations that are half way through an Open Value Programme where we are forking out for TFS CALs that would no longer be required under this new licensing model? We have opted to pay for the licences spread over 3 annual payments – but would ideally like to adopt the new model and not have to pay the next annual payment for the TFS CALs as they are now included with our MSDN licences. Our reseller is telling us that we are locked into a contract with Microsoft and will have to pay the final year even though they are technically redundant.

  16. Doug Seven says:

    Jim Liddell –

    For organizations that have current Open, Select and EA agreements that include TFS CALs, there is no change to those agreements. The TFS CAL as an MSDN benefit of the Visual Studio 2010 products is something that didn’t exist when your agreement was made, and your contract was signed. The agreement, if I understand you correctly, was to purchase a defined number of TFS CALs, and spread the payment over three years. You are still obligated to complete the payment plan for the licenses that you purchased. In otherwords, there is no change to your existing contract.

    Doug Seven

  17. Adam says:

    If we purchase a retail licesnse of TFS for $500, are those 5 users in the EULA exception always present? For example, if we have 10 employees consisting of 5 developers with MSDN and 5 non-developers, would our total TFS cost be $500 to start with? Then as soon as we add the 6th non-developer, we would have to buy a cal for ~$400?

  18. buckh says:

    Adam, yes that is my understanding.  If you’ve only got five people accessing the server, you don’t pay anything more than what it cost to buy TFS due to the 5 users provided in the EULA (note that they aren’t CALs and are tied to the server, so you can’t buy servers to get CALs for effectively $100 apiece).  The retail cost of a TFS CAL is $500, but I believe there are volume discounts on it.


  19. Jack says:

    In the past, TFS licensing called out that you could not use the development and test editions of Windows Server 2003 provided in MSDN subs for the underlying OS. Is this requirement still in place for 2010? Will TFS 2010 require a non-MSDN server license for the Windows Server 2008 on which it’s installed?

  20. buckh says:

    Jack, here’s the answer from Doug Seven.

    TFS, deployed for production use, requires a production license of the host OS (Windows Vista, Windows 7, Windows Server 2003/2008). This is no change from the previous release other than the types of OS’es you may deploy to.

    TFS 2010 will include a restricted use license for SQL Server 2008 Std Ed, as it does today. The grant to allow one production instance of TFS per subscription included the restricted use license for SQL Server 2008 Std Ed. You may use your MSDN version of SQL Server 2008 Std Ed for this instance.

    We have a licensing whitepaper that should be on Downloads any day now (its been approved and is just going through the machine).


  21. Ken Fisher says:

    I have read the Visual Studio 2010 Licencing White Paper but it is not clear which licences must be renewed on a yearly basis. If I purchase TFS Basic only for $US500 does that provide a perpetual licence to use TFS Basic or do I need to renew a licence annually?

    Similarly, if I purchase TFS 2010 full version for $US500 plus more CALs for developers above the 5 included in the TFS licence, do I have to renew both the TFS 2010 licence and the CALs annually?

    Thanks, Ken.

  22. Dmeglio says:

    About the SQL Server exception. Does this just mean I don’t need CALs? Or does it mean you’re actually giving me a SQL Server license key? It seems unclear if I need to buy the server software or not.

  23. buckh says:

    Dmeglio, you do not need SQL Server CALs or to buy a SQL Server license so long as you only use that SQL Server 2008 Standard installation to support TFS.


  24. buckh says:

    Ken, if you purchase TFS, you only pay that once (not annually).  TFS Basic and the full version are in fact the same.  The only difference is that Basic installs on a client OS and can use SQL Server Express.  Once you purchase TFS, it’s up to you as to which way you want to install it (choices in the configuration wizard).


  25. Russellw says:

    Looking at this comment above:

    "Alan, the SQL Server from a single MSDN TFS license may be used for a single TFS instance, whether in a single machine config or dual tier config.   Buck"

    If I have 2 MSDN subscriptions and plan to do a dual app config (2 app tiers failing over, clustered SQL) can I use the SQL Srv 2008 Ent. edition from each of those MSDN subscriptions to cover the SQL licensing requirements for both those App tiers if it is used for TFS only? Without Enterprise, I don’t believe we can cluster the instances. If MSDN doesn’t cover that use, then it would be over $30K just for the SQL licenses just to accomplish clustering TFS ( and thats with a corp. discount)

  26. buckh says:

    Russell, I asked and got the following reply from Doug Seven on your question.

    The SQL Server restricted use license is for SQL Server STD Ed only, so no, he cannot use the Ent Edition in MSDN for production.


  27. Michael Cai says:

    Does MSDN subscription cover license for Sharepoint service in TFS? What are the difference in features between Sharepoint service and Sharepoint server?

    If we setup Sharepoint server and TFS, does Sharepoint require license per user CAL/per year?

    Does TFS require user CAL/per year? or one time cost?

  28. buckh says:

    Michael, Windows SharePoint Services comes with Windows Server OSes.  SharePoint Server probably refers to Microsoft Office SharePoint Server 2007, which is separately licensed.  The following page talks about the differences, licensing, etc.:

    TFS only comes with Windows SharePoint Services 3.0.  You can use Microsoft Office SharePoint Server 2007 to get additional features in the dashboards, but you must buy MOSS separately.


  29. Jack Corbett says:

    My question as a DBA is, can I put my DBA database which has maintenance and monitoring procedures/tables in it, on the TFS SQL Server instance just to maintain that instance?  

  30. Alex O says:

    Is there an ETA for when VS 2010 will be on the volume licensing sites?  MSDN is good and all but for larger deployments the standard Microsoft site is still out of date.

  31. buckh says:

    Jack, based on my reading of the license for the SQL server license that comes as part of TFS, I would say no.  That would be a different use of SQL than just for TFS and would require a SQL license.  Depending on your needs, perhaps SQL Express would fill that role for you.

    Alex, I’ve asked and will let you know what I find out.


  32. buckh says:

    Alex, the volume licensed version should be available tomorrow, based on what I’ve been told.


  33. Farzad says:

    So, if I have MSDN subscription to download TFS 2010 it means that I can have 10 users using TFS 2010 without paying any extra money? Also the TFS 2010 downloaded from MSDN is Full version or Basic version?


  34. buckh says:

    Farzad, there’s no packaging of TFS that includes 10 users.  If you buy the retail package of TFS, it includes access for up to 5 users, but those are not CALs (see the update comment at the end of the post).

    There is only one TFS 2010.  When you install TFS 2010, you can choose whether to do a Basic, Standard, or Advanced installation.  This is true whether you download it from MSDN or buy it at retail.


  35. I’m having trouble finding where and how i can purchase TFS 2010 retail. Can you give me some advice?


  36. Buck,

      Thanks for the info. Before purchasing i have one last question (yeah right….) that product Visual Studio 2010 TFS does definately come with a 5 user license, not a single user license correct? All our developers have MSDN licenses, so i’m not worried about them since they will have a CAL for TFS, but i need to make sure that i’m covered for 2 – 5 people outside our developent department including contractors accessing the system. Contractors will be checking in/out code, but only to this instance of TFS



  37. buckh says:

    Mike, it does come with the ability to have up to 5 unlicensed users (they aren't CALs so that you can't use them with other servers, etc.) when you purchase it at retail.  The TFS server included with your MSDN subscription includes 1 CAL and no unlicensed users.

    So, if you buy a retail copy of TFS for $500, your situation of 2-5 additional people without CALs would be covered.


  38. sqlray says:


    Can we use SQL Server 2008 R2 for our TFS installation?



  39. buckh says:

    Ray, yes, but I checked with the folks who know and you'll need to purchase a license for it separately in order to use it in a production TFS installation.


  40. TogasPoon says:

    I just upgraded to VS 2010, activated my MSDN account but don't have access to TFS 2010.  I bought this version.…/ref=sr_1_1

    The compare guide at the bottom/as well as this blog post indicates that I should have a TFS server licences.  The box pictured on amazon's site is different than the one I received, the one I received includes MSDN Essentials, which seems to be the source of my problem.  As your policy changed?  Is amazon's description wrong?



  41. eheinsen says:


    Are there any known issues with hosting TFS 2010, using the multi tier configuration, on virtual servers?

  42. buckh says:

    eheinsen, that should be fine.  See…/tfs-on-hyper-v.aspx for more details on what to keep in mind in doing it.


  43. eheinsen says:

    Thanks for the reply Buck.

    Can the SQL Server 2008 (restricted) that is packaged with TFS 2010 be installed in a two-tier configuration? I have heard it can only be installed in the basic configuration. Also, does the restricted SQL Server 2008 include SSRS?


  44. Coder says:


    I'm having a hard time to buy the Team Foundation Server 2010 retail version. I've tried to order it from Microsoft Store but it looks like it's available only in UK and US. For example, it's not available in Scandinavia (Denmark, Sweden, Norway or Finland). What's the deal here? Why other countries can't order it? If I can't buy the retail my only option is to buy Visual Studio 2010 with MSDN (TFS 2010 + 1 CAL) or a bunch of CALs and that is going to cost 3-4 times more.

    UK (available)…/Visual-Studio-Team-Foundation-Server-2010

    US (available)…/4D531C01

  45. buckh says:

    eheinsen, my understanding is that the SQL Server included with TFS can only be installed on a computer with TFS installed – AT and DT on the same machine.

    The SQL Server included does include SQL Reporting services.

    The TFS Basic configuration is an option that can use either SQL Express or full SQL Server, but you will not get SQL Reporting Services integration with a TFS Basic configuration (you'd want to use a Standard or Advanced TFS configuration for that).


  46. buckh says:

    Coder, I'm sorry to hear it's been so problematic to get it.  I will send your question to the right folks.  Meanwhile, Amazon or another software store may have it (I know Amazon sells it here in the US, but I don't know about Scandinavia).


  47. eheinsen says:

    Thanks again, Buck.

    We will have MSDN subscribers and non-MSDN subscribers using TFS 2010. The retail copy of TFS 2010 is packaged with 5 non-licensed users. We are considering purchasing the retail for this reason but need clarification regarding the non-licensed user TFS capabilities. Do the 5 non-licensed users have the same TFS capabilities as the MSDN subscribers? Or do they have the web-only capability?

  48. buckh says:

    eheinsen, the 5 non-licensed users in the retail copy have access to the full product, just like those with CALs.  The non-licensed users are tied to that particular instance of TFS, though (in other words, you can't buy 5 copies of TFS to get 25 non-licensed users for a single server instance).


  49. Coder says:

    TFS 2010 Retail finally arrived for me, it was out of stock in whole Scandinavia. :)  

  50. buckh says:

    Coder, I'm glad to hear that you finally got it, and I'm sorry it took so long.  I had forwarded your comments to some folks that triggered a discussion around it.


  51. Brian Silvers says:

    How easy does TFS 2008 Workgroup edition upgrade to TFS 2010?  Do i have to change from SQL 2005 to SQL 2008 ,etc???  I guess I should go look at some documentation on it.


  52. buckh says:

    Brian, you will need to move from SQL 2005 to SQL 2008.  The upgrade process is pretty straightforward.  I do recommend the TFS 2010 installation guide at…/details.aspx.  Don't forget to right click on the downloaded file, choose Properties, and then Unblock to get it to open.  The upgrade process for 2010 is a big improvement over the 2008 upgrade process if you upgraded from 2005 to 2008 in the past.


  53. El Smurfa Diablo says:


    We are a small non-profit shop and trying to organize our licenses for VS/TFS 2010.

    I have 6 developer types(5 bodies and one vendor) and 5 Project Manager types (all internal).

    How best can I figure out what licenses are needed?  Is there any way we can make this more complicated?



  54. buckh says:

    ESD, yeah, licesning is more complicated than it ought to be.  If all 11 people need access to TFS, here's how it breaks down.

     * Anyone who has MSDN Pro, Premium, Ultimate, or Test Professional subscription has a CAL

     * Anyone who has VS Premium, Ultimate, or Test Professional has a CAL

     * If you bought TFS at retail, there are 5 unlicensed users included.  So for example, if the developers were covered under one of the first two bullets, the 5 project managers would be covered by 5 unlicensed users (they are called named or designated users in the TFS section of the whitepaper referenced in the post).

     * If you get TFS from MSDN, there are no unlicensed users allowed.  If some users (e.g., project managers) don't need VS, the cheapest way to get them covered is to buy TFS at retail since that will be cheaper than buying CALs for each.

    I hope that helps.


  55. Mark says:

    A couple questions on licensing:

    We have 10 Visual Studio 2010 Premium with MSDN licenses bought via a volume licensing agreement.

    We have 3 infrastructure engineers that at times participate on our teams and also would like to use  source control to manage vb scripts, bat files, etc.

    We installed TFS 2010 downloaded from MSDN.

    OS and SQL Server 2008 R2 are fully licensed with non-MSDN licenses.

    We were just considering buying 3 CALS for the infrastructure folks.  But your post above, if I read it correctly, implies that we could purchase a retail license to license the 3 (is this possible even though we have a volume licensing agreement?) and then the 10 developers would be licensed via MSDN.  Am I understanding that correctly?

    Lastly, if we created a web page that accessed the TFS data to total up work effort for display to our internal customers (outside of our group, they are not developers), would we need CALs for each customer?  I'm a bit confused on the last sentence of page 27 of the licensing white paper pertaining to TFS data, and page 28 when a "CAL is not required for users who:" section.


  56. buckh says:

    Mark, here's the answers I got from James Rice, who handles licensing for VS.


    Yes, they need to buy 3 TFS CALs for the infrastructure folks using TFS.  They can buy these CALs through the same VL agreement as their MSDN subscriptions.

    For the web page, if it's an automated refresh of data when you bring up the page, then this falls under the multiplexing rules and anyone hitting that data will need a TFS CAL.

    If it's a manual refresh where a licensed user refreshes it say once a day, then the multiplexing rule doesn't apply and no TFS CAL is needed.

  57. Marc says:


    i have a question about the retail version of TFS2010. Both a full version and a upgrade version are available. We currently are using Visual SourceSafe 2005 among 3 developers. Can we apply for the upgrade version or do we have to obtain the full version?


  58. buckh says:

    Marc, there is an upgrade program for SourceSafe:…/upgrade-visual-sourcesafe.


  59. Jai says:

    I have a question around Team Explorer.

    I have Visual Studio licences for my developers, so they have access to TFS and can use Team Explorer.

    I want to use a 3rd party product to manage workflow, which requires access to TFS and Team Explorer installed.

    There will be people without Visual Studio using the 3rd party app, so for their copy of Team Explorer, will they require a seperate license?

  60. Jai says:

    Team Explorer


    TFS is our source repository

    BugTracker is our workflow management utility.

    I want to replace BugTracker with Telerik Work Item Manager.

    Telerik Work Item Manager sits on top of TFS and has a pre-requisite of Team Explorer to run.

    If I want anyone that does NOT already have Team Explorer installed to run with this product, will I require a seperate CAL for the Team Explorer that will be installed on their machine?

  61. buckh says:

    Jai, anyone using TFS must have TFS CAL (with very few exceptions, such as read only work item access), which includes the third party apps.  Each user only needs one TFS CAL to access your TFS servers.  Since Team Explorer itself can be downloaded from, this is a case where the CAL and the client are separate (i.e., whether or not a user has a TFS CAL is completely independent of whether the user has Team Explorer).


  62. Chris says:

    I have a question about using TFS 2010 with SQL Server Standard edition.

    As discussed here and in the licensing white paper TFS "..provides the right to deploy one instance of either SQL Server 2008 Standard Edition…"

    I will be installing TFS and SQL Server on a single machine.  I will be purchasing a Server CAL and User CALs individually.  We do not have an MSDN subscription.  Are we still able to use SQL Server Standard (TFS as it's sole use) without licensing it separately?  Or is this only for TFS users who have MSDN?

  63. buckh says:

    Chris, you are able to use SQL Server Standard.  Here's the key piece from page 28 of the licensing whitepaper.

    " Team Foundation Server 2010—regardless of the acquisition channel—includes a restricted-use license to deploy SQL Server 2008 Standard Edition or SQL Server 2008 R2 Standard Edition with Team Foundation Server."

    I believe that the retail package of TFS 2010 includes a SQL Server 2008 Standard Edition disk, though I haven't confirmed that.


  64. Chris says:

    @Buck Hodges, thank you for the reply.

    I will be getting my CALs through volume licensing.  Will I receive a license key for SQL Server 2008 Standard with my server license?

  65. buckh says:

    Chris, I'm not sure.  How are you acquiring TFS?  Are you purchasing the boxed product, either through retail (e.g., Amazon) or VL?


  66. Chris says:

    @Buck Hodges, Volume Licensing.

  67. buckh says:

    Chris, okay you should able to get the SQL license from the VL vendor.  If that doesn't work (or make sense – I don't have direct experience with this), contact me (…/contact.aspx).


  68. Bman says:

    Does the EULA exception also apply to Volume License purchase of TFS Server 2010?  We are needing to upgrade immediately, but would also like to get Software Assurance since 2012 is almost released.  But if the exception doesn't apply we will just buy an upgrade retail to 2010 and then again to 2012.

    No one at Microsoft seems to know about the exception.  Our VAR reseller has been trying to confirm this for us and has no results.

  69. buckh says:

    The EULA exception that removes the CAL requirement for 5 users does not apply to TFS instances purchased in Volume Licensing, only Retail.


  70. Ian Holdsworth says:

    Has the free SQL Server Standard edition solely for TFS been extended to TFS2012?

  71. buckh says:

    Ian, yes, that's correct for "full" TFS (TFS Express provides SQL Express). So far the only place that I can find with that info is the licensing white paper…/details.aspx.

  72. Mohammad Nizamuddin says:

    We are using VS 2010 professional addition, so i hope we should be able to use TFS without any additional cost, please confirm??

  73. Pankaj Baviskar says:

    We are using visual studio 2010 ultimate , when i install it . it has just the "TFS object Model" Shall we use TFS server . Please reply..

  74. buckh says:

    Pankaj, If you have install Visual Studio 2010, you will find Team Explorer under the View menu in VS. It's automatically installed with Visual Studio 2010.

  75. buckh says:

    Mohammad, I believe the answer is no unless it is VS Pro with an MSDN subscription, in which case it would include a TFS CAL. However, I may be wrong on VS Pro without MSDN. The best resources to answer this include the licensing whitepaper linked in the post or calling a licensing specialist

  76. Rita Feehan says:

    What is the cost of upgrading TFS 2010 to 2015?

    1. Buck Hodges says:

      It depends on how you acquire TFS 2015. It’s included in MSDN, TFS 2015 Express edition is free, and it can be purchased at retail. You also need the client access license (CALs), and that’s included with VS or can be purchased via monthly subscription via VS Team Services.

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