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Tarun Arora - Visual Studio ALM MVP ALM, Agile, Automation, Performance Testing, Software QA, Cloud, ...


Every been in that situation when you desperately need to find that code you checked into TFS a few days back but just can’t remember what team project, what branch, what solution or what file you checked it into. Well you are not alone…

Only if there was a way to efficiently search for files and text with in TFS. It is possible… You need to get your hands on Agent Ransack… This is a stand a lone tool that does not integrate with TFS but gives you the capability to search through text files effortlessly.


Agent Ransack searches through files, text or otherwise, fast and efficiently. When searching the contents of files for code, or other text, Agent Ransack displays the text found so you can quickly browse the results without having to separately open each file!

  • Agent Ransack is free for both Personal and Commercial use and can be Download from here.


  • Set the Look In directory of the Ransack search tool to your TFS Workspace and type the text you would like to scan for, you can limit the search by narrowing down the filter path or the name of the file. Found text is shown with highlighted keywords so you don't need to waste time opening each file looking for the right information.

        Search results

  • The regular expression wizard helps you build regular expressions for complex pattern matching searches


  • You even have the option of searching by modified, created or last accessed date

         Search by various dates

  • Export your results to a file for importing into other apps or for sharing with others

         Export results

  • Agent Ransack also provides search support for popular Office formats including Office 2007 and OpenOffice

Next time you are looking for that illusive line of code whether it is a method declaration, function call, or algorithm that you checked into TFS, use Agent Ransack for a quick search.

Posted on Thursday, July 5, 2012 11:48 PM | Back to top

Comments on this post: Where did I write that code ?

# re: Where did I write that code ?
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Can't tell you how useful this is to me and my team on a day to day basis. Thank you so much for writing this blog post. Is there any possibility to integrate this with TFS?
Left by TFS User on Jul 06, 2012 8:35 AM

# re: Where did I write that code ?
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Hi TFS User,

Thanks for your feedback. I am glad you and your team can benefit from this.

Unfortunately at this point Agent Ransack does not expose an API for extension so it would not be possible to integrate this with TFS. But having said that, the tools works independantly as a stand alone application pretty well. You can also explore the project which does something similar.

Left by Tarun Arora on Jul 06, 2012 8:38 AM

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