Team Foundation Server 2013 Access Levels

*Info updated here: https://www.visualstudio.com/en-us/products/visual-studio-online-pricing-vs.aspx

The amazing world of licenses…when to use them, how to use them, how many computers, how many users, how many services available, on premises or online… These are few of the many questions that I receive every time a Dev or Test teams need to increase its number or its disciplines.

Let’s explain first how it works for those users that work with Team Foundation Server 2013 (the On-Premises server).

TFS 2013.3 Access Levels

First, a user, whatever kind of user is, needs to access to TFS2013 Update 3, so we need to specify which features need to get accessible. For that we have 3 levels (more info here):

  • Limited (Stakeholder access level)

    • View My Work Items
  • Standard (Basic access level)

    • View My Work Items
    • Standard Features
    • Agile Boards
    • Backlog and sprint planning tools
    • Chart Viewing
  • Full (Advance access level)

    • View My Work Items
    • Standard Features
    • Agile boards
    • Backlog and sprint planning tools
    • Request and Manage Feedback
    • Test case management (including running tests)
    • Team rooms
    • Agile Portfolio Management
    • Chart Viewing
    • Chart Authoring

Now that you know more about the licensing, let’s differentiate the licensing on TFS2013.3 from TFS2013.4 and Visual Studio Online.

In TFS2013.3 the access levels were Limited, Standard and Full.

In TFS2013.4 the access levels are Stakeholder, Basic and Advance.

In Visual Studio Online the levels are Stakeholder, Basic, Professional, Advance and MSDN Subscribers.

TFS2013.4 Access Levels

Let’s see now how the licensing changed from TFS2013.3 to TFS2013.4:

Access level

License required

Basic

TFS client-access license (CAL) or Visual Studio Professional with MSDN subscription

Advanced

One of these MSDN subscriptions: Visual Studio Ultimate with MSDN, Visual Studio Premium with MSDN, MSDN Platforms, or Visual Studio Test Professional with MSDN.

Stakeholder

No license required. Assign Stakeholder access to customers or stakeholders that you want to collaborate with but who aren’t on your team.

It means that the Stakeholder level (previously called Limited), will allow you to create Workitems (such as Bugs, Test Cases, Requirements, etc) but now, on the Update 4 for TFS2013, we have some extra features:

Stakeholder access level:

  • View and edit all work items (not only yours)
  • Standard features
  • Agile boards
  • Basic backlog and sprint planning tools
  • Agile Portfolio Management

If you go for the Basic access level (you would require a CAL or a license of VS Professional), you will get the next features access:

Basic access level (all stakeholder’s plus…):

  • Chart viewing
  • Build
  • Code
  • Administer account
  • Advanced home page
  • Advance backlog and sprint planning tools

Advanced access level (all basic’s plus…)

  • Chart Authoring
  • Request and manage feedback
  • Test case management
  • Team rooms
  • Advanced portfolio management

Visual Studio Online Access Levels

And last but not least VSO. If you don’t want to host the TFS server on your premises or just you want to avoid all the set-up of servers, SQL Server Databases, etc. Maybe the best option is to subscribe to an on demand service called Visual Studio Online (previously called Team Foundation Service). This service allows you to get licenses on demand and monthly, so you will save a considerable amount of money. Right now you can’t have divided your infrastructure half on premises, half on the cloud, so that means that your online users will work on team projects hosted on the cloud.

VSO features are slightly reduced in comparison to TFS (like reporting or SharePoint integration) but most of the features are available!

Let’s go through the features accessible through the different access levels

Stakeholder access level (free):

  • Work item tracking, queries, tagging
  • Alerts
  • Agile planning boards and backlogs
  • View Iteration and capacity planning
  • Portfolio management boards and backlogs
  • View query based charts 
  • Provide feedback
  • Track test progress and charts

Basic access level (5 free and $20/month new ones). All stakeholder access plus:

  • Team chat
  • Git repositories and TFVC
  • Work with Xcode, Eclipse, IntelliJ and others
  • Code Reviews
  • Enterprise Scale
  • Full Build and Deployment features
  • Web-based test execution. Test runner
  • Administer accounts, users, teams and projects structure

Professional access level (includes stakeholder and basic access levels). $45 per user per month.

  • Includes Visual Studio Professional

Advanced access level (includes stakeholder and basic access levels). $60 per user per month.

  • Request and manage feedback
  • Test planning: create test plans
  • Test authoring
  • Test suite management
  • Test tracking

As you can see it’s slightly different the On-Premise Server than the On-Line Services but in practice, this would be transparent for your developers, testers or team leads.

For more information follow the links below.

Happy licensing!

Eduardo Ortega

Resources:

VSO Matrix: http://www.visualstudio.com/pricing/visual-studio-online-feature-matrix-vs

Visual Studio Versions: http://www.visualstudio.com/products/visual-studio-with-msdn-overview-vs

Work as a stakeholder: http://www.visualstudio.com/get-started/work-as-a-stakeholder-vs

Visual Studio Online Pricing: http://www.visualstudio.com/pricing/visual-studio-online-pricing-vs

Pay for users accessing your account: http://www.visualstudio.com/get-started/get-more-user-licenses-vs

Visual Studio Online Basic: http://www.visualstudio.com/products/visual-studio-online-Basic-vs

Advertisements

Leave a Reply

Fill in your details below or click an icon to log in:

WordPress.com Logo

You are commenting using your WordPress.com account. Log Out / Change )

Twitter picture

You are commenting using your Twitter account. Log Out / Change )

Facebook photo

You are commenting using your Facebook account. Log Out / Change )

Google+ photo

You are commenting using your Google+ account. Log Out / Change )

Connecting to %s