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  • Published:
    June 8, 2014
  • Languages:
    English, Chinese (Simplified), French, German, Japanese, Portuguese (Brazil)
  • Audiences:
    IT professionals, developers
  • Technology:
    Microsoft Team Foundation Server 2015
  • Credit toward certification:

Administering Visual Studio Team Foundation Server

This exam has been retired

For currently available options, please see the Microsoft Certification exam list.

Skills measured

This exam measures your ability to accomplish the technical tasks listed below. The percentages indicate the relative weight of each major topic area on the exam. The higher the percentage, the more questions you are likely to see on that content area on the exam. View video tutorials about the variety of question types on Microsoft exams.

Please note that the questions may test on, but will not be limited to, the topics described in the bulleted text.

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Install and configure Team Foundation Server (TFS) (25-30%)
  • Install Team Foundation Server
    • SQL Server version support, install Team Foundation Server in a multi-tier or multi-machine environment, install Team Foundation Server in a load-balanced environment, set up a version control proxy server, schedule automatic backup and restore activities by using the TFS Administration Console
  • Configure the application tier
    • Validate an installation, configure SMTP for Team Foundation Server, change the URL (friendly name), change the default SharePoint Web App, set up reporting (SQL Server Analysis Services)
  • Migrate and upgrade Team Foundation Server
    • Upgrade to Team Foundation Server in place or move to new hardware, import a source base from a non–Team Foundation Server system, upgrade a Team Project
  • Install and configure Lab Management
    • Set up environment templates, install and configure test agents, install and configure System Center Virtual Machine Manager (basic Virtual Machine Manager installation), create library shares or resource pools
  • Install and configure multiple build agents and controllers
    • Tag and bind a controller to a project collection, add a build agent
Manage Team Foundation Server (25-30%)
  • Manage team project collections
    • Move project collections, manage team collections and projects, create and configure team project collections, create a team project using SharePoint and SQL Server Reporting Services (SSRS), split and partition Team Project Collections
  • Configure for backup and recovery
    • Back up and recover Team Foundation Server and related components, recover a failed application tier, recover a failed database tier, implement a disaster recovery plan
  • Monitor server health and performance
    • Monitor the server for performance issues (monitor activity logging database and Team Foundation Server server manager), monitor the job infrastructure for failed jobs (monitoring warehouse adapters and warehouse jobs), clean up stale workspaces and shelvesets, set up Team Foundation Build to use a version control proxy server
  • Operate lab management
    • Operate and modify lab environments, repair lab environments, use snapshots, store System Center Virtual Machine Manager environments
  • Manage security
    • Configure limited users; manage roles in Team Foundation Server using Active Directory groups; manage permissions in Team Foundation Server in SharePoint, SSRS, builds, source control, and Work Item management; create and manage teams; configure security for users who do not have a Client Access License (CAL)
  • Manage reporting for Team Foundation Server
    • Manage basic reporting using Excel Services, customize the SharePoint team project portal, upload a new SSRS Team Foundation Server report, configure Team Foundation Server to enable a report to appear in a SharePoint project portal, rebuild the Team Foundation Server data warehouse
Customize Team Foundation Server for team use (20-25%)
  • Configure a team build definition
    • Set up for a symbol server and source server; set up for custom build numbers, configure build log verbosity; set up definition properties (test impact analysis, code analysis, automated unit testing, and architecture validation); set up build triggers (gated check-in, continuous integration, and scheduled build); configure the build drop location to be in source code control or a fileshare
  • Manage build execution
    • Queue a build with parameters, reconcile workspaces as part of a gated check-in workflow, customize build qualities, clean up builds (apply retention policies)
  • Modify a process template
    • Upload and download process templates; troubleshoot template errors; customize functional areas within process templates, including SSRS, SharePoint, build definitions, Work Items, and queries
  • Configure a team project
    • Define areas and iterations, manage users through the default security groups, manage portal settings (team project portal site URL, process guidance URL), define project-level alerts
  • Apply Work Item customizations
    • Add a new Work Item type as a child of an existing Work Item; customize field definitions for a Work Item; customize form layout and workflows; customize global lists, link types, and categories
  • Create Work Item queries
    • Define query folders and permissions; apply query types (tree, flat, directed), add fields to a query, create a query by using Team Explorer
  • Configure client connectivity to Team Foundation Server
    • Configure Visual Studio, Team Explorer, Team Explorer Everywhere, Excel, Project, and other tools to connect to Team Foundation Server; configure clients for a proxy server
Administer version control (25-30%)
  • Create and manage workspaces
    • Cloak, undo delete, and modify a workspace; delete a workspace; specify workspace visibility; unlock other users’ checkouts, pending changes, and code; choose a default workspace type for a collection; delete a shelveset
  • Configure version control proxy
    • Set up the cache hit ratio, set up the cache size, set up for multiple Team Foundation Server servers
  • Configure team project version control settings
    • Enable multiple checkout, enable get latest on checkout, configure check-in policies for a team project (Work Items, builds, code analysis, testing policies)

Preparation options

Exam prep video

Microsoft Certification PREP Talk: Exam 70-496

In this episode of Prep tips from certification experts, James Seymour, Certification Planner, and Brian Keller, Technical Evangelist, discuss the relevancy of the skills being measured on Exam 70-496.

Self-paced training

55172A: Managing Development Projects with Team Foundation Server 2015.

Administering Visual Studio TFS Jump Start.

From the community

Exam 70-496 wiki

Exam 70-496 forum

Who should take this exam?

Candidates for this exam are senior developers, server administrators, or technical product managers who manage software development using Team Foundation Server in an enterprise development environment.

More information about exams

Preparing for an exam

We recommend that you review this exam preparation guide in its entirety and familiarize yourself with the resources on this website before you schedule your exam. See the Microsoft Certification exam overview for information about registration, videos of typical exam question formats, and other preparation resources. For information on exam policies and scoring, see the Microsoft Certification exam policies and FAQs.


This preparation guide is subject to change at any time without prior notice and at the sole discretion of Microsoft. Microsoft exams might include adaptive testing technology and simulation items. Microsoft does not identify the format in which exams are presented. Please use this preparation guide to prepare for the exam, regardless of its format. To help you prepare for this exam, Microsoft recommends that you have hands-on experience with the product and that you use the specified training resources. These training resources do not necessarily cover all topics listed in the "Skills measured" section.