Branching guidance now available

I’m extremely excited to announce the availability of Branching guidance for Team Foundation Server.  This was a collaborative effort between the TFS product team and members of our “Ranger” program who are focused on accelerating adoption of V1.  While the product documentation will tell you how each of our tools works, it doesn’t provide insight into the best practice usage of each.  The guidance that we recently released attempts to fill that gap in the area of version control and how to best work with branches. 

One thing about the Ranger team is that they straddle the fence between our customers and the product team.  So, what you’ll read in this guidance isn’t some theoretical description of how things should work in a perfect world but instead has been pressure tested and proved to be effective through actual TFS projects.  In fact, you’ll find examples pulled directly from our own teams experiences as well. 

The other exciting thing about this effort is that it’s been posted on which means that we’re poised to take your feedback and incorporate it directly into the guidance.  So, it’s bound to get better over time with your help. 

Here’s the high level overview:

  • Introduction
  • Parallel Development
  • Branching Defined
  • Creating Isolation in Team Foundation Server
  • General Branching Structure Guidance
  • Branching Strategies
  • Broad Areas of Branching Isolation
  • Creating Your Branching Strategy
  • Defining Your Code Promotion Model
  • Feature Crews: How Microsoft Does It
  • End-to-End Implementation Scenario
  • Appendix

Enough talk…go take a look for yourself:  view the branching guidance online

Congrats to John, Mario and Graham for their hard work here…hope you like it!


Comments (11)

  1. Rob Caron says:

    As Jeff Beehler announced on his blog today, you can now find Branching Guidance for Team Foundation

  2. Buck Hodges says:

    Jeff Beehler announced the initial release of guidance on using branching and merging with your development

  3. Rick Mokros says:

    Jeff, thanks for pointing us to this.

    Finally, some documented guidance from Microsoft on branching with Team Foundation Server.  This includes a section on how Microsoft is using branching using "Feature Crews".

    Posting a guidance white paper as a CodePlex project is an interesting use for CodePlex, but, in some ways, a weird distribution model for this information.

  4. Moke Blog says:

    Jeff Beehler, thanks for pointing us to this. Finally, some documented Branching Guidance with Team Foundation Server from Microsoft . This includes a section on how Microsoft is using branchin …

  5. StephenPatten says:


    After reading the document I need clarification about the "Multiple Release Scenario" (MRS) and “Multiple Feature/Team Scenarios” (MFTS) outlined on pg 15. Assuming that the original tree structure was created by following the steps in the “Single Release Scenario” (SRS) what happens to the DEV branch to make it a container to support branches from MAIN? At one point in time it was the source of all branches, right, or do you substitute MAIN for DEV when you first create the tree, then branch down into DEV? Can you lay out the exact steps as you did for SRS on pg 14

    Thank you,

    Stephen Patten

    stephen dot patten at lendingtree dot com

    Lending Tree

  6. Comme l’a précisé Jeff Beehler sur son blog, un guide très complet vient de sortir sur l’utilisation

  7. Jeff Beehler의 블로거를 통해 공유된 내용 중, Visual Studio Team Founation Server를 이용해 개발 소스를 관리하는 경우 소스의 분기 (Branching)를

  8. Customers frequently ask me which branching strategy they should use with TFS. However, TFS is incredibly

  9. We get lots of questions about how to organize version control in TFS, particularly around branching.

  10. About a year ago at our Dev & IT-Pro Days 2006 Steven Wilssens delivered a session on advanced version

  11. J.D. Meier on Team Foundation Server Branching Guidance Now Available. Jeff Beehler on Branching guidance…