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Does Hosted Team Foundation Server Make Sense?


Hosted infrastructure often makes sense for companies, especially small ones with modest needs. For less than $20/month, one can get an ASP.NET or Apache co-hosting complete with a MySQL or SQL Server database. But does it make sense for other services like source control?

According to a Microsoft blogger who goes by the name Brian or "bharry", there is now a commercial hosting service for Microsoft's Team Foundation Server. Based on new off-line features sorely lacking in TFS 2005, Readify has launched their TFS Now service.

Unlike bargain basement co-hosting, TFS Now does not come cheap. At $995 + $95/user over 5 (prices in Australian dollars), the accounting department is sure to balk. But on the other hand, it is certainly cheaper than hiring someone just to babysit the source control.

Perhaps this is pointing to a more fundamental problem with commercial source control systems. Why do heavy-duty systems like Team Foundation Server or IBM's Rational ClearCase require a person or small team just to set it up and keep it running smoothly? These products are a testament to how immature our industry still is.

It seems that there is still plenty of room for ISVs to make an integrated source control, build, and defect tracking system that doesn't cost an arm and leg. Or perhaps some open source projects like Bugzilla, Subversion, and Cruise Control merge into a complete suit. 

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Community comments

  • A hosted TFS Service that does make sense!

    by John Collis,

    Your message is awaiting moderation. Thank you for participating in the discussion.


    TeamDevCentral is North America's premiere offering of a hosted VSTS/TFS Service.

    Please check us out at:


    John Collis

  • Hosted SCM Solution

    by catherine sea,

    Your message is awaiting moderation. Thank you for participating in the discussion.

    Dynamsoft SCM Anywhere Hosted is a hosing SCM tool with fully integrated version control, issue tracking, build automation and professional service to manage your whole software development life cycle.

    Free hosting plan is available:


  • Hosted Team Foundation Server

    by Daniel Gocsman,

    Your message is awaiting moderation. Thank you for participating in the discussion.

    Software as a Service (SaaS) enables you take advantage of Hosted Team Foundation Server without the typical overhead of an in-house implementation. We invite you to use our services in a secure, reliable and cost effective way.
    Team Foundation Server used in SaaS model has proven to be very effective, it allows you to focus on managing your projects more effectively with an increased level of productivity.
    Analysts claim that in 3-5 years time around 30% of new software will be delivered via SaaS. Why wait? Join our growing customer base Today!

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  • The boss of TFS

    by Robert MacLean,

    Your message is awaiting moderation. Thank you for participating in the discussion.

    That "Microsoft Blogger" is Brian Harry, who is the owner of TFS (i.e. the big boss) so I think he has a great understanding of TFS and if it makes sense. There has been a fairly impressive growth of this in recent years and with Microsoft's announcement of TFS on Azure at PDC 2010 ( indicates this is a important space.

  • Yet another option

    by Rjsa dsay,

    Your message is awaiting moderation. Thank you for participating in the discussion.

    There is another option for the TFS hosting service. Dynamsoft just released it few days ago with 3-month free trial. Dynamsoft is Microsoft Gold partner, it is worth to try.

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