16 Apr 2013

In this article I'll outline the steps I had to take to get Team Foundation Server 2010 server (TFS) upgraded to TFS 2012.  This is just one particular example of the various upgrade paths that might exist, but should give everyone a good rundown on how the process typically works.  I won't cover every possible upgrade scenario in this example, but I will briefly list some of them before digging in deeper.


  • TFS 2012 RTM, Developer Preview, BETA or RC
  • TFS 2010 with or WITHOUT Sp1
  • TFS 2008 with SP1

SQL Server

SQL Server 2008 isn't supported, but SQL Server 2008 R2 and SQL Server 2012 are supported.  Microsoft notes that if you are running SQL Server 2008, R2 Enterprise edition, you will need to update to the cumulative update package 1 for SQL Server 2008 R2 Sp1 (or later) to deal with an issue with table compression.  If you have Standard or SQL 2012 then you don't need to update.


With Portal Server you can continue using the same version without upgrading.  All previous versions are supported including SharePoint Services 3.0, SharePoint Server 2007 and SharePoint Server 2010.

Microsoft also notes that if you no longer plan on using reporting or SharePoint you can avoid those features during the upgrade.

Upgrade Paths

  • If you run TFS Basic or Express you can do the basic upgrade
  • You can use the standard upgrade if the TFS Application Tier will use the same hardware (the path I am using in this document)
  • You can do the advanced upgrade if the TFS Application Tier will use different hardware.

Standard Upgrade


In my example I have these servers involved:

VSTFS02 - the main 64-bit app server

VSIntranet02 - the SharePoint 2010 server

VSTFSBuild02 - the build server

VSSQLPROD01 - the SQL 2008 R2 Enterprise Server

Step 1

Of the preliminary checks to do first include:

  • Determine if the OS and hardware meet the requirements.  For instance, for the new version of TFS you must use a 64-bit server.
  • You must also determine the service account for Team Foundation Server.  By default it should have been set to the Network Service unless it was later changed.
  • We must also make sure SQL Server 2008 R2 Enterprise has the patch mentioned above.

Step 2

Uninstall TFS from the app server VSTFS02

Note if you dont uninstall first, you will get this message on the start of setup:

We also must uninstall TFS Extensions from VSIntranet02 the SharePoint 2010 server.


Step 3

Run the installer for the new TFS Extensions for SharePoint on the SharePoint server, assuming that SharePoint products are running on a separate server.  So for me that meant running this on VSIntranet02.

Next up, we run the upgrade by double clicking "tfs_server.exe" on the App Tier on VSTFS02.  Here I chose the D drive, because in the Hyper-V world, the D, SCSI gets better performance than the IDE C drive:

Now setup will roll through installing.

After it completes it brings up the wizard where we can select upgrade:

Next is the SQL Server instance selection.. here we put in the sql server (if its not on the same box), in my case vssqlprod01\tfs and click "list available databases":

Next we confirm the upgrade settings and click "Next"

You may get warnings at the end, particularly ones related to SharePoint, which will need to be dealt with after the upgrade completes.  Clicking the "Configure" button will do the upgrade.

If your SQL server runs out of memory during the upgrade, the following message might appear at the end (TF255356: Insufficient system memory in resource pool to the run this query):

In this case, I adjusted the memory allocation for my test Virtual Machine and the wizard was able to complete (though I had to restore the databases back to their original state to try the upgrade again).  Once the wizard completes you get the following window:

Clicking "Next" will go through the Project Collection upgrades on any collections you have.  Afterwards the summary screen appears.

Note the one message relates to SharePoint extensions. 

tf400414: Sharepoint templates were not uploaded because the retained SharePoint settings point to a remote machine.  Ensure SharePoint extensions are installed on the remote machine.

You may also encounter this error when trying to bring up the SharePoint Intranet:

Could not load file or assembly Microsoft.TeamFoundation.SharePoint.WebAccess, Version=

Since SharePoint resides on a remote machine, in this case VSIntranet02, we need to install the extensions on that box as well, after the install.  This is the reason for the error, since as part of the prereqs we had to remove the TFS SharePoint Extensions on VSIntranet02.

There is a good article on installing the Remote SharePoint Extensions from the TFS media at this location.

**One final note, we must also install the remote SharePoint extensions on the SQL box as well, in my case VSSQLPROD01 (which means you have to uninstall any 2010 TFS Extensions there first).

After the SharePoint extensions are complete, the upgrade is complete and the updated TFS 2012 is ready for action.

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