Using Build Explorer to View and Manage Queued, Ongoing, and Completed Builds
You can use Build Explorer to view and manage details about queued, ongoing, and completed builds. You use the Queued tab to view and manage the builds that were queued within the last five minutes. You use the Completed tab to view and manage older builds.
To perform this procedure, you must have the View builds, View build definition, and View build resources permissions set to Allow. For more information, see the following topic on the Microsoft Web site: Team Foundation Server Permissions.
View build results: You can open Build Explorer to view information about queued, running, and completed builds.
Manage queued and running builds: You can stop an in-progress build. You might do this if, for example, you discovered that you did not check in your changes before requesting a build.
Find specific builds: You can apply filters by build definition, build quality, and by the date on which builds were completed. By doing this, you can more easily find the builds that you want to view and manage.
Managed completed builds: After a build has completed, you can rate the quality of the build. You can request a new build for any completed build. You can delete completed builds that are no longer required.
You can specify that a build should be retained indefinitely, as an exception of the defined retention policy. For example, you might do this for released builds.
You can use Build Explorer to view all queued, running, and completed builds. For all listed builds, you can view details for that build.
For each build, the following information is available in Build Explorer:
State/Result (information icon)
Indicates the current build state. Valid states include active (queued), in progress (running), stopped, postponed, succeeded, and failed. Point to any state icon for a description of its meaning.
The name of the build definition that was used to queue the build.
The priority of the build.
Priority appears only on the Queued tab.
The date and time when the build was queued.
Date Queued appears only on the Queued tab.
The name of the person who requested the build.
The build controller that was used to run the build.
Build Controller appears only on the Queued tab.
Retain Indefinitely (lock icon)
Indicates that the build should be retained indefinitely and should not be removed when the retention policy would otherwise remove it.
Retain Indefinitely appears only on the Completed tab.
The name of a completed build. The build name consists of the build definition concatenated with the build number.
Name appears only on the Completed tab.
The quality of a completed build. This field is blank until a build quality is assigned.
Build Quality appears only on the Completed tab.
The date and time when the build completed.
Date Completed appears only on the Completed tab.
Additional details are available if you view the build report for a specific build.
To open Build Explorer
In Team Explorer, expand the team project for which you want to view builds, and then double-click the Builds node.
You can filter the list of build results to more easily find a specific build. For more information, see Filter the Results in Build Explorer.
To view details for a build
Perform one of the following tasks:
To view details for a recently queued build, click the Queued tab.
If you refresh the tab after five minutes, queued builds no longer appear on the Queued tab. You must instead view the Completed tab.
To view details for a completed build, or a build that was queued more than five minutes ago, click the Completed tab.
In Build Explorer, double-click the build for which you want to view details.
A build details report appears in a new window. The title bar for the window consists of BuildName_BuildNumber, where BuildName is the name of the build definition and BuildNumber is the build number.
(Optional) You can perform any of the following tasks from the build details report:
Click View Summary to see a summary of the build results.
Click View Log to see the details that were saved in the build log.
Click Open Drop Folder to open the folder to which the build output was copied.
Click Delete Build to delete the build from the server.
You cannot undo this operation. You should delete builds only if you are certain that they are no longer required. In most organizations, the build retention policy is used to determine when builds are automatically removed. For more information, see Specify the Retention Policy for the Build (Visual Studio Team Foundation Server 2010) or Specify the Retention Policy for the Build (Visual Studio Team System 2008 Team Foundation Server).
Click the list of build quality values to specify the quality of the completed build.
You cannot specify a build quality for builds that have not completed.
You can use the filters in Build Explorer to filter the completed builds by build definition name, build quality, or the date-range on which the builds were completed.
To filter build results
In Build Explorer, click the Queued tab to show the results of recently queued builds. To show older or completed builds, click the Completed tab.
Perform any of the following tasks:
To find builds created from a specific build definition, in Build definition, click the definition for which you want to see results.
To find builds of a specific quality, in Quality filter, click the quality for builds that you want to display.
To find builds that completed in a specified range of dates, in Date filter, click the date range that corresponds to the time period that you want.
As you specify filter criteria, the list of build results updates immediately.
You can perform a variety of actions on completed builds. You can perform these actions from Build Explorer or from the build results report for a completed build.
In this section
Rate the Quality of a Completed Build
When a build has completed, you can specify the quality of the resulting build. By doing this, you can communicate information about the build to your team. You might specify that a particular build should be ignored by marking it as Rejected. You might specify a build quality of Ready for Initial Test to indicate that testing can begin. The list of values for build quality can vary for each organization. For more information about how to customize the list of build quality values, see Adding and Removing Build Quality Values.
To rate build quality from Build Explorer
In Build Explorer, in the Build Quality column, click the quality that you want to assign to the specified build.
To rate build quality from the build summary and details report
In the build report, click the list of build quality values to specify the quality of the completed build.
Queue a New Build
You can queue a new build for any build whose results appear in Build Explorer. You can also queue a new build from Team Explorer. For more information, see Running and Monitoring Builds (Team Explorer Everywhere).
To queue a new build from Build Explorer
In Build Explorer, right-click the build result for which you want to queue a new build and click Queue New Build.
You can also click the build in the build results and then click Queue New Build on the toolbar.
Complete the details of the Queue Build dialog box. For more information, see Running and Monitoring Builds (Team Explorer Everywhere).
Delete a Completed Build
If a completed build is no longer required, you might choose to delete it.
When you delete a build, you delete the related test results and files. The data that you delete by using this procedure cannot be recovered.
When you delete a build, the following information is permanently deleted:
Details - Information about the completed build that appears in Build Explorer. This information includes build steps, requestor, and date and time queued. This data is stored in the Team Foundation Server database.
Drops - File and folders that the build created and copied to the drop location.
Test Results - Results of any automated tests executed during the build process or results of any test published against this build.
Label - The version control marker associated with the specific file versions used by the build process.
Symbols - The debugging symbols published to a symbol server during the build.
To complete this task, you must have the Delete builds permission set to Allow.
To delete a completed build
In Build Explorer, click the Completed tab.
Highlight one or more builds that you want to delete, right-click any of them, and then click Delete Build.
You can also highlight one or more builds and then click Delete Builds on the toolbar.
In the confirmation dialog box, click OK if you want to delete the build or builds.
Retain a Build Indefinitely
Each build definition has an associated retention policy that specifies how builds should be retained. You can override this retention policy if you specify that a build should be retained indefinitely.
To specify that a build should be retained indefinitely
In Build Explorer, click the Completed tab.
Highlight one or more builds that you want to retain, right-click any of them, and then click Retain Indefinitely.
You can also highlight one or more builds and then click Retain Indefinitely on the toolbar.
In Build Explorer, a lock icon appears next to the builds that are retained indefinitely. You can repeat this procedure to clear the flag that indicates that the build should be retained indefinitely.