S. Somasegar is the corporate vice president of the Developer Division at Microsoft. Learn more about Somasegar.
Recently, I had a chance to visit with some customers and partners in Europe. While talking about Visual Studio Team System (VSTS) and Team Foundation Server (TFS), I was asked by numerous people if Microsoft is using TFS to manage our own application lifecycle activities.
Historically we have used internally developed, proprietary tools for both source code control and bug tracking, but today we run TFS in Developer Division. Essentially, we’re running our business on the same tools we sell to our customers. In fact, we are using the VS 2008 version of TFS for building VS 2008.
Since releasing TFS in the spring of ’06 we’ve deployed 21 instances of the server to support 600 projects across Microsoft. Today there are over 5,000 Microsoft employees using TFS to manage product development and internal IT projects.
The largest deployment is our own Developer Division server supporting 2,500 users. This is our “dogfood” server, meaning it’s the first deployment for TFS that is a part of VS 2008. The server is located in Redmond and supports US based teams in North Carolina and Redmond; and international teams in Hyderabad, India and Shanghai, China. We’ve been using this server for two years and it has amassed an impressive amount of data to track the history of the project. We have nearly one hundred million files under version control! And the team has tracked 250,000 work items through the system. For many more statistics on our dogfood server, take a look at Brian Harry’s blog.
The history for all this work is captured in an integrated data warehouse, essentially a big SQL server cube. The reports from this cube are giving our engineering managers, for the first time, “apples to apples” comparisons of project management metrics across the portfolio of features being delivered into the next release of Visual Studio. This is where TFS really begins to add value for us.
SQL Server and Office are two other major product teams that are using TFS today. We are making good progress on ensuring that we are betting the farm on the tools that we are asking our customers to use.