Check out and edit files

Azure DevOps Services | Azure DevOps Server 2022 - Azure DevOps Server 2019 | TFS 2018

Visual Studio 2019 | Visual Studio 2022

When you want to edit a file, you can open it from Visual Studio Solution Explorer or Source Control Explorer. When you begin editing a file, it's automatically checked out to you.

In rare situations, for example if you want to check out and lock the file to make sure your changes are checked in before changes from other team members, you might need to manually check out and optionally lock a file.


As a best practice, use the Lock type option with discretion, and notify your teammates why you are locking an item and when you plan to remove the lock.


You must be one of the Contributors for your project. To learn more, see Default TFVC permissions.

Check out items manually

  1. In Visual Studio Solution Explorer or Source Control Explorer, select the files you want to edit, right-click, and select Check Out for Edit.

  2. In the Check Out dialog box, you can optionally lock the files. Under Lock type, select one of the following options:

    • Unchanged - Keep any existing lock
    • Check In - Allow other users to check out but prevent them from checking in


    The Lock type menu isn't available if:

    • Another team member has locked the file. If other users have locked any of the specified files, the lock operation fails. For more information, see Lock and unlock folders or files.
    • The Enable multiple check-out option has been disabled by a project administrator, which isn't recommended. Administrators can configure this option by selecting Team > Team Project Settings > Source Control from the Visual Studio menu bar.
  3. Choose Check Out.

In Solution Explorer and in Source Control Explorer, a check mark TFSC Checked-Out Status Icon appears next to the items that you have checked out. In Team Explorer, the files show under Included Changes on the Pending Changes page. In Source Control Explorer, a pending edit change is visible to you and to members of your team.

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