Wednesday, January 09, 2008

Can't make Area Path and Iteration Path required

We're giving up on Area Path. Why? Because we can't make it required and management is sick and tired of having Work Items not filled out correctly.

They've slapped hands and threatened dismissal, but no go. So it was requested to me, as the TFS administrator, to replace Area Path with a new custom field called Service. Service is required on submit (a.k.a. Save).

This is a shame as I really like both Area Path and Iteration Path. They are easy to update and provide a nice tree hierarchy to break down subsystems (or Iterations) into sub-subsystems.

Iteration Path got ditched a long time ago for the same reason. Management said it's unacceptable for a Work Item to not have an Iteration Path selected. The best way to fix that? Make it required on Submit. Brute force I guess.

I'm sure there are technical reasons for it, but it would be really nice to have some way where you can make a tree hierarchy required. I can see there would be problems with how deep do you want to make it required? For example, is Iteration Path \TeamProject\1.0 good? Or do you require \TeamProject\1.0\1.0.1? Basically how deep in the tree makes Iteration Path valid?

Anyway, until we can make tree hierarchy required, important fields like Iterations (we call them Releases) and Areas (we call them Services) will be custom fields.

On a somewhat related note; here is the Excel formula we used to migrate all the Area Path values from Area Path to our new custom field. I only put this here for my future reference if I ever have to do it again. =MID(C3,SEARCH("\",C3)+1,20)

3 comments:

Siddharth said...

Hi Mac,

Sorry about this. We didn't build in the ability to required tree hierarchies in TFS V1.

There is a workaround posted here, which you may want to try out:
http://msdn2.microsoft.com/en-us/library/ms181480(VS.80).aspx#CommunityContent

Mac Noland said...

Thanks Siddharth. I'll have to give this a try. I would guess the same concept applies to Area Path?

Siddharth said...

Yes, it does.