Hello – Michael and I just got back from a VSTS tour through Europe this week. It was a very interesting trip, and we had the chance to talk to a lot of customers.
One question I got a fair bit was with regards to how customers using Visual Studio 2003 could use Team Foundation Server. I thought I would elaborate on our plan there.
First, let’s talk about how version control providers integrate with Visual Studio in general. By ‘integrate’, I mean having things like icons in your Solution Explorer to indicate what files are under version control and having files automatically checked out when you start editing them.
This integration will be provided through the MSSCCI (pronounced ‘misky’ and rhymes with ‘whiskey’) interface. MSSCCI has become somewhat of a defacto standard for allowing version control providers to integrate with Visual Studio, as well as other development tools on the market.
The integration between Team Foundation Server is MSSCCI + a little bit. This little bit allows Team Foundation Server to provide functionality like work item integration, check-in policy, etc. This little bit is available when you integrate Team Foundation Server with Visual Studio 2005 Professional or the Visual Studio 2005 Team Editions.
OK, now what about Visual Studio 2003? After Team Foundation Server finalizes in Q1 2006, the development team will focus on porting some aspects of the Team Foundation Server Object Model to .NET 1.1. Doing this will allow us to provide integration between Team Foundation Server and Visual Studio 2003. This integration will be done only through MSSCCI.
Integrating through MSSCCI means that Visual Studio 2003 customers will have a very seamless experience with Team Foundation Server. They will have the same version control integration with the IDE like they normally do, yet benefit from the robustness, scalability and reliability that TFS provides. On the other hand, it does mean that Team Explorer is not being ported to VS 2003, so customers won’t have work items, reports, build, etc. For that they will have to use the stand alone Team Explorer (which in turn means they will have to install .NET 2.0).
Hope this clarifies things a little bit – if there are any scenarios that I’ve missed, please let me know and I’ll do my best to address them.