Tim Elhajj

Off the Microsoft stack!

What SQL Server High Availability Features Does Team Foundation Server Support?


M M M M Microsoft

In a recent discussion I had with product support engineers, someone asked exactly which SQL Server High availability features were supported by TFS. I politely demurred. But then the support engineer insisted on an answer. He really wanted to know. He wanted specifics. I told him I’d have to get back to him.

The truth is that since TFS 2010 we don’t really say one way or another.

The dirty little secret about TFS 2010 support for SQL Server high availability features is this: A lot of work went into making TFS 2010 agnostic to SQL Server. That means that if you have a supported version of SQL Server with the required features, TFS 2010 shouldn’t care what SQL high availability features you have running to preserve your data. This is a huge improvement over previous version of TFS, where if you wanted to setup, say, a SQL Server cluster, you had to do some additional work in TFS so that TFS could use the cluster. The things you had to do were relatively simple for a cluster, but other SQL Server high availability features required various other kinds of work to get TFS to play nice. With TFS 2010, those days are gone…

We hope.

The truth is we don’t know about every SQL Server high availability feature because not every SQL Server feature was tested. We did the work. We put a few SQL Server high availability features through the wringer. In theory TFS 2010 does not care if your SQL Server instance uses log shipping or mirroring. In reality, we’re only willing to officially back the features we’ve had more experience mucking around with.

Here is the list:

TFS 2010 – SQL High Availability Feature Support Index

SQL Server Feature Supported?
SQL Cluster YES
SQL Mirroring YES
SQL Replication NO
SQL Log Shipping NO

I’m going to get this up on MSDN shortly. When I do, I’ll add a link to this page. Meanwhile, this is a good time to solicit feedback from the community about which of these SQL Server HA features are most important to your organization. The support people say that a lot of customers don’t want to invest in a SQL Cluster. I’m considering doing a walkthrough on setting up TFS with SQL Mirroring. I’d love to hear about your experience with TFS 2010 and replication or log shipping.

Author: Tim Elhajj

Tim is probably walking his dog.

3 thoughts on “What SQL Server High Availability Features Does Team Foundation Server Support?

  1. Pingback: September 1, 2011 – Learn TFS Daily | Learn TFS

  2. Hi,

    Recently i’m facing some trouble with my SQL Database server, which reboot with no apparent reason, and i’m really interested about your walkthrough about TFS 2010 and SQL Mirroring.

    Is your walkthrough already written ?
    Is TFS 2010, support an automatic failover ?

    Thanks a lot for your answers

  3. Hello Raphael,

    Unfortunately my walkthrough is not yet complete. In fact, I haven’t even started it yet. However, I can tell you that TFS 2010 does not include any sort of automatic failover, but there are some features you may or may not be aware of — for example, the new TFS 2010 “Add an AT” feature for installing TFS, allows you to quikly restore the TFS application tier, if it should fail. This is a manaul process.

    If you’d like to give me some more details about your problem, I can look into it with the team. I can’t promise we’ll be able to help or that I’ll even get an answer from anyone. We’re all head’s down on the upcoming release. But I can always ask. There’s no harm in asking!


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