TFS Management with Team Foundation Sidekicks 2010

Recently, I’ve had a series of unfortunate events regarding my development environment. I’ve had some hard drive issues, some difficulties with a VM that I had been working on, and so it goes. All of these problems led to a rebuild recently and the spin up of a brand new development environment.

Unfortunately, rebuilding your trusty dev environment is never as quick and easy as you think it will be and I was left with a few files orphaned from TFS in the old Workspace. If you’re not familiar with this, Team Foundation Server (TFS), the “best-more-than-just-source-control” source control, is Microsoft’s top of the line source control and project/build management software for development environments. When working with TFS, you use Workspaces which map a local directory on your machine to a server source control directory. All check-ins/check-outs are controlled and attached to the activity in this Workspace. Because these Workspaces are machine specific, if you abruptly change computers, you will need to create a new Workspace, and though the same user account can be used to attach to TFS and create the Workspace, you can (if you’re not careful, like I was unfortunately) leave files checked out to yourself in a different Workspace. Since this Workspace is no longer active (computer may be replaced), the Workspace is left in limbo.

There are of course ways to clean this up natively with TFS; however they are command line only tools. Now all true geeks should be comfortable working in command line, but to be perfectly honest, this activity is so rarely executed that it is much, much, much easier to do with a graphic tool called Team Foundation Sidekicks 2010 instead of returning back to documentation or Bing (noticed how I didn’t say Google).

So, without any further ado, let’s run through the quick tutorial of installing and using Sidekicks.

Step 1: Know Where to Get It

Mosey on over to Attrice to download the appropriate version. For TFS 2010, you will want Team Foundation Sidekicks 2010, for prior versions of TFS; you will want Team Foundation Sidekicks.

I will be installing 2010 in the following screenshots.

TFS Sidekicks 2010 Download

Step 2: Install and Configure to Your TFS

Now that you’ve downloaded the application, go ahead and install. No instruction necessary here, just run the install package.

Once you are up and going, you will be asked to Connect to a Team Foundation Server. Enter your server information and a valid administrator privileged TFS user account and password.

TFS Sidekick 2010 Connect to TFS Configuration

Step 3: Using Sidekicks

Sidekicks has several areas of TFS you can administer. See the screenshot below to view the Workspace, Status, History, Label, Shelveset, Users View, and Code Review options. To clean up my orphaned Workspace guess which option I will be selecting?

TFS Sidekick 2010 Modules

Once in the Workspace Sidekick, you can filter to find the appropriate Workspace(s) to administer. I searched by username and found three (one is my active Workspace created on the rebuilt development environment, the other two were from old environments that I had never cleaned out). I selected the two obsolete Workspaces and clicked the red X delete icon; done deal, pretty straight forward. Below is a screenshot of the Workspace Sidekick and my remaining active Workspace.

TFS 2010 Workspace Sidekick