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ROOTPLACEHOLDER message with no changesets


I connected to my TFS collection/project and it seems to connect, but the left box just says "ROOTPLACEHOLDER" and nothing else. Click "Get ChangeSets" and popup dialog quickly shows and disappears and nothing happens.


Dharmesh_Shah wrote Feb 22, 2013 at 3:58 PM


At this stage, TFSChangeLog is designed to work against Branches only. So your project shall have atleast one branch defined and this could be your Main / Root / Baseline branch. Some projects have very large amount of folders and a very deep folder hierarchy and we thought it would be too much of data for users to choose from. This is the reason why we have kept selection of Branch rather then a folder as option within the Tree view.

If you want to convert one of your root level folder to the branch object then you have to open you project's source control explorer view in visual studio >>> right mouse click on the folder >>> select "Branching and Merging" and then select "Convert to Branch" option. This way, your root folder / project folder will be converted to the branch object and then when you connect to it via TFSChangeLog applicaton, then you will be allowed to select and get ChangeSets that are registered in this branch. Once you select your ChangeSet range, then you cold simply generate reports.

Best Regards,
Dharmesh Shah.

wrote Feb 22, 2013 at 3:59 PM

wrote Mar 8, 2013 at 9:47 PM

vjenkins wrote Jul 9, 2013 at 7:32 PM

Hi, I am getting this same response and I have 3 Branches DEV, MAIN, and RELEASE. verified and I do have the choice to convert to a folder so they are definitely branches.

wrote Jul 9, 2013 at 7:33 PM

Dharmesh_Shah wrote Jul 12, 2013 at 4:00 PM

Hi vjenkins,

Can you please tell me which version of TFS ChangeLog, VS Client and TFS Server are you using?

As you say, when you right mouse click on DEV, MAIN and RELEASE you see option to "convert to a folder". So I agree that this is now branched. In fact you should also see a Branch Icon instead of folder Icon on them.

I also suggest you to install compatible version of TFS PowerTools for your version of VS. Just search on for it.

Then from Visual Studio Command Prompt you can run following command to verify that your branch is valid.
tfpt branches /listBranches:children /collection:http://[SERVERNAME]:[PORT]/tfs/[COLLECTION_NAME]  "$/[PROJECT_NAME]/.../[BRANCH_NAME]"
Now if you receive information as "Path$/[PROJECT_NAME]/.../[BRANCH_NAME] is not a branch." then something is wrong in your project's branch set-up.

But if you receive information as "Children (0):" or some child branch information then it's being set-up correctly and there is probably some issue in your set-up of TFS ChangeLog.

I would also suggest that you clean your TFS local cache on your computer. please follow below steps for it..
  1. Close all application that are connected to TFS like Visual Studio, TFS Administrator Tool, Excel, etc.
  2. Open a command prompt and run following command.
rd /s /q "%APPDATA%\..\LOCAL\Microsoft\Team Foundation"
I hope this helps!

Best Regards,
TFSChangeLog Team.

vjenkins wrote Jul 15, 2013 at 12:34 PM

I am running VS 2012 and TFS 2012 Changelog version is I am running win7 64bit OS

I have the latest Powertools

Ran the command response was as expected "Children (0):"

Cleared the cache as requested

No Change same response, are there any logs I could provide to help resolve this for me I really sold this one to management from my previous experience using it and would like to keep using it here as well.


Dharmesh_Shah wrote Jul 15, 2013 at 2:40 PM


I think I know why it’s not working for you. TFSChangeLog v1.0.1.0 is compiled against VS 2010 Team Explorer SDK / API libraries. So if your machine does not have following two software installed on your machine then it will not work.

Option One - If you already have VS 2010 installed.
  1. Microsoft Visual Studio 2010 Service Pack 1 (Installer) -
  2. Visual Studio 2010 SP1 Team Foundation Server 2012 Compatibility GDR -
First of all, VS 2010 and VS 2012 can be installed side by side on the same computer.

Option Two - If you want to install VS 2010 Team Explorer Only.

It’s possible to install Visual Studio 2010 SP 1 Team explorer only which is free of license cost. To do this you will have to install

• VS 2010 Team Explorer 2010 -
• VS 2010 SP1 -
• Visual Studio 2010 SP1 Team Foundation Server 2012 Compatibility GDR -

Finally, Once you have installed “VS 2010 + SP1 + GDR update for TFS 2012” then you should be able to connect from it into TFS 2012. Verify that this connection works and then run TFS ChangeLog application and it should work.

I would like to specify that we really don’t have logging capabilities incorporated in the released version of TFSChangeLog application. This is something we would like to do so that we can diagnose issues when such things happens. We have this story for our backlog and will prioritise the same in future.

I hope this works for you!

Best Regards,
TFSChangeLog Team.

vjenkins wrote Jul 15, 2013 at 6:51 PM

I think this issue might be something less easy to discover without logs, I have VS 2010 installed I use it for some other actions.

I have several team projects all have branches some of which show up in the list in change log and I can pull the change sets for, though I can not pull a report it spins but doesn't open. Is it possible it has to do with the templates they were running in 2010 before they upgraded most of them are no longer functioning properly for agile and scrum. I think I might be out of luck for now.

Depending on how long this contract I may migrate all of their team projects to 2012 templates.

Thank you I will continue to delve into this as time permits and will update if I find a solution.

Dharmesh_Shah wrote Jul 16, 2013 at 9:48 AM

One last thing I would suggest to you would be to run TFSChangeLogCL from command prompt.

Follow this steps…
  1. Go to “Visual Studio Command Prompt” and then navigate to “TFSChangeLog” installation folder which generally should be “C:\Program Files (x86)\TFSChangeLog”
  2. Now run “TFSChangeLogCL.EXE /?” command
  3. You will be presented with help instruction for this command.
  4. Now you will have to prepare “TFSChangeLogConfig.xml” file as this is the only required parameter to this command.
If you don’t have “TFSChangeLogConfig.xml” file installed in your TFSChangeLog installation folder then you can get it latest version of it from
  1. Prepare “TFSChangeLogConfig.xml” as per your tfs server, project, branch and other required information.
  2. Now run “TFSChangeLogCL.EXE --TFSChangeLogConfig=“[TFS ChangeLog Application Configuration File Path]”
  3. If there are any errors then it should show it along with some more information about why it’s not building report for you.
On the other hand, you can email me at “Dharmesh dot shah at Hotmail dot co dot uk” and I can help you further with it.

Best Regards,
TFSChangeLog Team.