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Visual Studio 11 Team Foundation Explorer Express Beta Error

I am test driving the new (awesome) Visual Studio 11 Team Foundation Explorer Express Beta; my initial review is that it is awesome (more to follow on this). However, I ran into an issue when installing it on a Windows Server 2008 R2 box (it installed just fine on a workstation). The install went smoothly but once I tried to perform certain configuration tasks I started receiving errors; attempting to open the TFS Web Access portal also returned a 500 (internal server error). After much, much tinkering, I finally discovered the solution:

- solution after the jump -


when TFS is installed, it configures the TFS application pools in IIS to allow 32-bit applications, changing this to false corrects the issue and allows the application to function. To do this: in IIS > Application Pools > [Select the app pool] > Advanced Settings > Enable 32-Bit Applications = False.

I checked on the workstation installation and it was already set to false, so it seems that the issue is more with the installation package than with the actual TFS product (which is awesome, by the way). I'm not certain what actually causes the installer to do this, but I'm guessing it's related to the installer's detection of the CPU capabilities and  the fact that the server is a virtual.

As a side note, if you want the details of this bug, you can find them on the Microsoft Connect website: https://connect.microsoft.com/VisualStudio/feedback/details/733759/tfs-11-express-server-error. I was working with Chandru, a Senior Dev with Microsoft who was also great to work with - if you read this, thanks for all your help Chandru!

If this helped you, please let me know in the comments!

By Justin

I'm a software developer, consultant, and the founder of Karpilo Digital, a web and software services company as well as the owner of this blog.

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