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What’s the purpose of “checking out” a file in TFVC (Visual Studio)?

francoscarpa profile image Franco Scarpa ・1 min read

Hi! I’m new to version control with TFVC and I’m not able to understand what the “Check Out” option does. I couldn’t find a true definition and real use case for it. In particular, I’m working in a team. When I compile a certain project, I need to copy two dll files created by the previous build process inside two folders related to different projects, replacing their old versions of the dll files. Now, after building the project, they told me I have to check out the old dll files selecting them and clicking Check Out from Source Control Explorer and I just have to copy the new dll files, replacing the old ones with a simple “copy and paste” inside my local workspace. Why do I need to check out those files? Why can’t I just open my local workspace and replace the old dll files with a “copy and paste” directly?

Thanks in advance for the help!

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djsullenbarger profile image
David Sullenbarger

Checking it out ensures you're using the latest version from the "source of truth" (i.e. your version control).

If it doesn't work as expected and you complain the first thing they'll want to know is what version you used.