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licensing for TFS 2017 RRS feed

  • Question

  • I have downloaded TFS 2017 about a month ago.  We are 4 developers that are currently using it.  I believe we are using a trial version (I don't know how to check that in TFS 2017) and would like to update the product key to a full version before it expires.  

    I have downloaded the TFS 2017 installer via our University (which gives us full enterprise microsoft products for free) and tried to extract the product key for that but there was no setup file from which I could extract it (contrary to all documentation out there).

    In the TFS 2017 management console there is no indication of product key whatsoever (again contrary to all documentation out there which only covers previous TFS versions).

    So the question goes:

    If we are only 4 developers, do we need to upgrade our product key?  If yes, how do I extract said product key from the ISO for TFS 2017 considering the setup file residing in the ISO (which one is supposed to open in a text editor) does not exist?
    Tuesday, March 28, 2017 9:28 AM

Answers

  • Hi Zakariel76,

    >>TFS allow me to "downgrade" to the express version?

    No, you need to install TFS express.

    TFS Express has limitations:

    1. Is limited to no more than 5 named users.
    2. Only supports SQL Server Express Edition (which we’ll install for you, if you don’t have it)
    3. Can only be installed on a single server (no multi-server configurations)
    4. Excludes the TFS Proxy and the new Preemptive analytics add-on.

    There is a link for TFS express 2017 : https://www.visualstudio.com/downloads/ Expand TFS 2017.1 ,you will see TFS express 2017.1:

    There is another choice, You could consider to use vsts, an on-line visual studio team service, it is free for 5 users.

    There is a document for Migrate from Team Foundation Server to Visual Studio Team Services:

    https://www.visualstudio.com/en-us/articles/adopting-vsts

    Best Regards


    MSDN Community Support
    Please remember to click "Mark as Answer" the responses that resolved your issue, and to click "Unmark as Answer" if not. This can be beneficial to other community members reading this thread. If you have any compliments or complaints to MSDN Support, feel free to contact MSDNFSF@microsoft.com.

    • Marked as answer by Zakariel76 Wednesday, April 26, 2017 6:53 AM
    Monday, April 24, 2017 7:16 AM

All replies

  • Hi Zakariel76,

    In earlier versions, TFS included code which required a valid product key to be present in order for the server to start up.Since TFS 2015.2, TFS no longer distinguish the versions in this way, so there is no product key left on the TFS Admin console.

    If your trial expires, every user will see a banner in most pages of the TFS Web UI.  Please refer to the follow link for more information of complete trial:

    https://social.msdn.microsoft.com/Forums/en-US/be169a6c-64e5-47c5-8cff-80693b71bff2/how-to-update-product-key-for-tfs-20152-?forum=tfsadmin

    To use TFS 2017, you need to buy monthly access for each member. As you only have 4 developers, 5 users in each Team Services account are free. You could find more information of buy monthly access  in this link:

    https://www.visualstudio.com/en-us/docs/setup-admin/buy-access-tfs-test-hub

    What's more TFS 2017 update 1 is released in 7th March, it is a more stabilized version. You could download it here and upgrade your TFS 2017 to TFS 2017.1.

    Best Regards


    MSDN Community Support
    Please remember to click "Mark as Answer" the responses that resolved your issue, and to click "Unmark as Answer" if not. This can be beneficial to other community members reading this thread. If you have any compliments or complaints to MSDN Support, feel free to contact MSDNFSF@microsoft.com.

    Wednesday, March 29, 2017 7:38 AM
  • I tried looking into "buying" free access for our 4 users however was unable to find any information related to it.

    Since we have only 4 users perhaps I don't need to do anything?  My understanding is even if the trial expires (btw I can't find any information as to where to check for that in TFS) since we only have 4 users we wont be forced to "buy" free access for those users.  Do let me know if i'm wrong on this.

    I do have TFS 2017 Update 1.

    Wednesday, March 29, 2017 8:45 AM
  • Hi Zakariel76,

    If the trial expires, in web UI, you will see a prompt like the image below:

    As you just have 4 user, you not need to buy monthly access.  

    Best Regards


    MSDN Community Support
    Please remember to click "Mark as Answer" the responses that resolved your issue, and to click "Unmark as Answer" if not. This can be beneficial to other community members reading this thread. If you have any compliments or complaints to MSDN Support, feel free to contact MSDNFSF@microsoft.com.

    Wednesday, March 29, 2017 9:10 AM
  • Is there any place where I can check when the trial will expire?
    Tuesday, April 4, 2017 1:43 PM
  • Hi Zakariel76,

    Go into TFS Admin console, select the root node of your server, if your TFS is on trial, you will see a complete trial link. Click it, you will see expire time of your TFS.

    Best Regards


    MSDN Community Support
    Please remember to click "Mark as Answer" the responses that resolved your issue, and to click "Unmark as Answer" if not. This can be beneficial to other community members reading this thread. If you have any compliments or complaints to MSDN Support, feel free to contact MSDNFSF@microsoft.com.

    Wednesday, April 5, 2017 9:15 AM
  • Hello Jingzhu,

    Thanks for showing me this.  Though there are only 4 users registered on TFS i'm afraid of what might happen if I complete the trial.  I am not sure if the users will actually need to do anything or not and what those steps would be.
    Monday, April 10, 2017 8:57 AM
  • Hi Zakariel76,

    If you complete the trial for TFS 2017, you need to pay for it.

    VSTS is free for 5 users. Our you could use TFS express, it is a free version of TFS.

    There is a link, it will help you understand the TFS pricing better:

    http://blog.learningtree.com/understanding-team-foundation-server-tfs-pricing/

    Best Regards


    MSDN Community Support
    Please remember to click "Mark as Answer" the responses that resolved your issue, and to click "Unmark as Answer" if not. This can be beneficial to other community members reading this thread. If you have any compliments or complaints to MSDN Support, feel free to contact MSDNFSF@microsoft.com.

    Monday, April 10, 2017 10:13 AM
  • Hi Zakariel76,

    If you complete the trial for TFS 2017, you need to pay for it.

    VSTS is free for 5 users. Our you could use TFS express, it is a free version of TFS.

    There is a link, it will help you understand the TFS pricing better:

    http://blog.learningtree.com/understanding-team-foundation-server-tfs-pricing/

    Best Regards


    MSDN Community Support
    Please remember to click "Mark as Answer" the responses that resolved your issue, and to click "Unmark as Answer" if not. This can be beneficial to other community members reading this thread. If you have any compliments or complaints to MSDN Support, feel free to contact MSDNFSF@microsoft.com.

    Sorry for my delayed response; been on sick leave for about 10 days.  

    Do I need to download, install and set up TFS express before I complete the trial of our TFS?  Or does TFS allow me to "downgrade" to the express version?  

    It is vital that we do not have any downtime as we are currently hosting our Git Repository on TFS.

    EDIT: I forgot to mention, I am working for an academic organization which has access to full versions of Microsoft products (including TFS) for free.  I have already ordered TFS 2017 (full version) via our network. However it does not come with a license key, only an "Order Number" and an "Agreement Number".

    Therefore I dont know how to configure our TFS to accept the above version as the licensed version.



    • Edited by Zakariel76 Monday, April 24, 2017 7:18 AM
    Monday, April 24, 2017 6:51 AM
  • Hi Zakariel76,

    >>TFS allow me to "downgrade" to the express version?

    No, you need to install TFS express.

    TFS Express has limitations:

    1. Is limited to no more than 5 named users.
    2. Only supports SQL Server Express Edition (which we’ll install for you, if you don’t have it)
    3. Can only be installed on a single server (no multi-server configurations)
    4. Excludes the TFS Proxy and the new Preemptive analytics add-on.

    There is a link for TFS express 2017 : https://www.visualstudio.com/downloads/ Expand TFS 2017.1 ,you will see TFS express 2017.1:

    There is another choice, You could consider to use vsts, an on-line visual studio team service, it is free for 5 users.

    There is a document for Migrate from Team Foundation Server to Visual Studio Team Services:

    https://www.visualstudio.com/en-us/articles/adopting-vsts

    Best Regards


    MSDN Community Support
    Please remember to click "Mark as Answer" the responses that resolved your issue, and to click "Unmark as Answer" if not. This can be beneficial to other community members reading this thread. If you have any compliments or complaints to MSDN Support, feel free to contact MSDNFSF@microsoft.com.

    • Marked as answer by Zakariel76 Wednesday, April 26, 2017 6:53 AM
    Monday, April 24, 2017 7:16 AM
  • I don't know if you read the last part of my previous post (I edited it):

    I am working for an academic organization which has access to full versions of Microsoft products (including TFS) via Dreamspark for free.  I have already ordered TFS 2017 (full version) via our network. However it does not come with a license key, only an "Order Number" and an "Agreement Number". 

    I do not know how to configure our TFS 2017 to accept the one I ordered above as the licensed version.

    Is there anyway I can configure our TFS 2017 (full version) to be licensed to the full TFS 2017 that I ordered via our dreamspark?

    • Edited by Zakariel76 Monday, April 24, 2017 10:50 AM
    Monday, April 24, 2017 8:49 AM
  • Hi Zakariel76,

    Since the question is about a license issue, please call 1-800-426-9400, Monday through Friday, 6:00 A.M. to 6:00 P.M. (Pacific Time) to speak directly to a Microsoft licensing specialist, and you can get more detail information from there. You can also visit the following site for more information and support on licensing issues: http://www.microsoft.com/licensing/mplahome.mspx   

    Best Regards


    MSDN Community Support
    Please remember to click "Mark as Answer" the responses that resolved your issue, and to click "Unmark as Answer" if not. This can be beneficial to other community members reading this thread. If you have any compliments or complaints to MSDN Support, feel free to contact MSDNFSF@microsoft.com.

    Tuesday, April 25, 2017 6:17 AM
  • Hello Jingzhu,

    Your link took me to an obsolete looking buggy page which assumes the entire world lives in the United States (drop down list gives no other option).

    When reading about TFS it is clearly said that one does not need to pay if the team does not exceed 5 users.  What is not outlined clearly is that one has to install TFS express for this to happen.

    What exacerbates the problem is that TFS Express and TFS cannot run in parallel.  That means TFS Express will over write our TFS instance and we will lose all the git information (commit history, branches) that we have accumulated over the last 2 months.  I have looked into database backups to no avail: TFS and TFS Express have different database schemas hence a backup / restore wont do.  

    I will continue to look into solutions for backing up our repository history.  


    • Edited by Zakariel76 Tuesday, April 25, 2017 10:23 AM
    Tuesday, April 25, 2017 10:23 AM
  • I found a solution to backup our repository history (I am no git guru so it too me a while).  I will install TFS express and replace our current TFS with that.  Hopefully I will have no licensing issues.

    I have marked one of your answers as correct as you have pointed me in the right direction.  Thanks again!
    Wednesday, April 26, 2017 6:55 AM