Teams in Visual Studio 11, the basics.

The next version of Visual Studio is supporting Teams. Members in a team work together on a project or feature, they are multidisciplinary and deliver working software in sprints. From the online help:

By defining a group of people who work on your team projects, you can more easily organize, track, and facilitate the work that those people perform. This organizational unit is called a team, and you create a team for each team project. Members of teams can work together to complete a list of work items, called a backlog, that you define or that members of the team collectively define for themselves. Each backlog represents the planned or proposed work that your team wants to accomplish. For additional structure, you can create and use areas to help categorize the work items that your team will perform. By creating iterations, you can also define the schedule against which you want your team to track and perform the work.

https://tfspreview.com/_content/TeamHelp.htm

It is a bit more complex:

  • A team project can have zero or more teams.
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  • A team contains one or more team project members (an empty is not possible)
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  • A team project member doesn’t need to be in a team
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  • A team project has release / sprints (with date, which is cool)
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    To set the area and iteration for a project, select the team project and select ‘administration’ on the right. Team project name is bold. Area and Iteration are also visible in the team administration which can get confusing. You can only set the data for a sprint, and add areas in the team project admin screen.
  • A team project has areas defined
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    (see iteration for details)
  • A team project is in a sprint (date restriction)
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  • A team is responsible for an area
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  • Multiple teams can be responsible for the same area (I won’t recommend doing this)
    SNAGHTML519295b
    Team 1 and Team 2 responsible for the same area, so they have the same backlog.
    and the same sprint backlog, but with different capacity planning.
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    and the teams have the same same task board, but… a team can move other teams tasks (with the right security settings)
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    (again… don’t do this)
  • A team follows the team projects sprint cycle.
    All team are in the same sprint (look at the sprint backlog in the images). When a team isn’t selected for a sprint, the sprint burndown graph in the sprint backlog isn’t available.
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  • A backlog contains product backlog items for a teams area. also when it is assigned to someone else.
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  • The task board contains tasks for an area for the current sprint.
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  • The task board contains team members with tasks for an area for the current sprint.
    (see Brian Harry’s post: http://blogs.msdn.com/b/bharry/archive/2011/06/14/agile-project-management-in-visual-studio-alm-v-next.aspx)
  • The backlog visualizes the capacity planning for the team responsible for the area.
    (see Brian Harry’s post: http://blogs.msdn.com/b/bharry/archive/2011/06/14/agile-project-management-in-visual-studio-alm-v-next.aspx)
  • You can assign a task to a team project member which isn’t in a team. <— don’t do this, it will make a mess.image
    (only team project member Clemens-C is in Team 3)
    not only the task board gets confusing also the capacity planning. see screenshots: Multiple teams can be responsible for the same area.

So, you can do a lot with the board and the backlog for team management, but you also can make a mess out of it. When you don’t understand it anymore, you can fall back on the work item queries. But at that moment you really know you’re project is in danger.

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Watefall in agile clothing.

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