TFS and Explorer integration

Lately I’ve had a few TFS users complain to me that the TFS client (aka Team Explorer+Visual Studio) lacks the explorer integration you get with TortoiseSVN. Now, I’ve never felt the need for this feature but decided to do some research. And guess what? You CAN get explorer integration with TFS! In several different ways! Ler

I have not tried any of them (yet) but I’d recommend the power tools… mainly because it is Microsoft and they’ll eventually steamroll the competition (except maybe SvnBridge). Just pay attention to this small but important part of the “instructions” on the download page:

“Please note that the TFS Windows Shell Extensions are not installed by default. Choose Custom when prompted at installation to add the tool to the installed components.”

If I’m not too busy I’ll write up a short review of the TFS Windows Shell Extension in Visual Studio Team System 2008 Team Foundation Server Power Tools. Jeez… Microsoft, you relly need a shorter name for these tools!

TFS Sidekicks

I just found a wonderful collection of tools called TFS Sidekicks. I’d recommend it to all TFS administrators who dont want to mess around with command line tools, which is just sooo last century Tongue out

The program is actually five or so different TFS sidekick tools that have been combined into a single tool. Not that I’ve checked but I dare say that it offers no unique functionality but you get a lot of useful stuff in one place and a nice GUI.

Conversion Issues

Objective:
Get a VS2003 ASP.NET web application project from SourceSafe, migrate to VS2005 and add to TFS source control. All done on a PC running Windows Vista. As VS2003 will not run on Vista opening the solution in VS2003 and disconnect it from source control is not possible… might be possible to do from SourceSafe, but I decided to give it a go and just open it in VS2005 straight away.

Problem:
VS2005 conversion wizard fails to convert the web application. Depending on if I let the .sln file point to localhost or changed the projekt path to “C:\myAppPath\myWeb.vbproj” I get two different errors:

Error 1 (keeping localhost/myWeb/myWeb.vbproj as project path):
Conversion Issues – myWeb.vbproj
Thats it… No clue as to what is wrong.

Error 2 (changing to C:\myPath\myWeb.vbproj as project path):
Conversion Issues – myWeb.vbproj:
Unable to open the Web ‘C:\myPath\myWeb.vbproj’. The Web ‘C:\myPath\myWeb.vbproj’ does not exist.
Looks a bit more helpful, but since the file DOES exist… No, no more helpful than what I got in Error 1.

Solution:
As it turned out there wasn’t really anything wrong with the myWeb.vbproj file. Except that it was write protected… Checking the “make writable” checkbox when getting the code from SourceSafe (or just removing the write protection from the file) made all the difference. VS2005 disconnects the code from SourceSafe source control and converts everything Cool

Now I just need to solve all the compilation errors and the code will be ready to check into our TFS… Looking back, I might have been able to avoid the entire problem by following Microsoft’s instructions for migration. But why learn to swim when it is soooo simple to just jump into the deep end of the pool? Anyway, hope this is helpful to someone else…