I’m starting to sound like a broken record, but the VSTS Rangers have shipped again! This time, in the form of guidance for branching strategies using Team Foundation Server.  You can find this release on Codeplex: http://www.codeplex.com/TFSBranchingGuideII

Selecting the right branching strategy is one of the most important aspects of TFS deployment. Picking the right strategy can lead to optimized team cooperation, increased productivity and a successful adoption. On the other hand, selecting a bad branching strategy can cause frustration, damage productivity and derail TFS adoption in an organization. We have therefore put a lot of effort in creating a set of practical guidance to educate our customers and partners and support their VSTS adoption efforts.

As the name implies, this is the 2nd version of the TFS Branching Guidance to be published.  Since the first release, we have received lots of feedback and change requests. Most feedback indicated a desire for a more practical approach to branching compared to the first release which is more theoretical. With that in mind, we decided to reduce the conceptual part and focus on branching practices with Team Foundation Server.

Here’s an overview:

  • TFS Branching Guide - Main 2.0
    • This is the main article which briefly explains branching concepts and introduces 3 levels of the most common branching scenario
  • TFS Branching Guide - Scenarios 2.0
    • A collection of less common branching scenarios
  • TFS Branching Guide - Q&A 2.0
    • A set of most frequently asked questions with answers
  • TFS Branching Guide - Drawings 2.0
    • A set of branching drawings in different formats including a large branching poster
  • TFS Branching Guide - Labs 2.0
    • A couple of examples for hands on labs with step by step instruction for practicing the branching scenarios

I’m especially excited about this project as it’s the first VSTS Ranger project to have included significant contributions from our Team System MVPs including Brian Randell, Willy-Peter Schaub, Eugene Zakhareyev and Jeff Levinson.  This is a new approach we’re trying out in order to increase the community involvement in our Ranger projects which will hopefully result in improved applicability throughout our user base.  Please let us know if you think it’s working!