TFS 2012 Build Controller – Zombified by SSL Binding

January 3, 2013

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On the client, queued builds get stuck on the queue and never start.

On the server, build service is running, but both the Build Controller and Build Agent appear as ‘Ready’ with ‘Stopped’ icon.

TFS 2012 Build Service

After more digging, the Build-Services\Operational event viewer log revealed the reason:

Build machine build lost connectivity to message queue tfsmq://buildservicehost-2/.
Reason: Please contact your administrator. There was an error contacting the server.
Technical information (for administrator):
HTTP code 500: System.ServiceModel.ServiceActivationException



TFS was running in SSL binding but the build service was failing to bind. First, we need to make sure the Message Queue is configured with httpsTransport binding by modifying the web.config on the App Tier under:

C:\Program Files\Microsoft Team Foundation Server 11.0\Application Tier\Message Queue\web.config
If only SSL is used, replace httpTransport with httpsTransport. Otherwise add httpsTransport.
   <binding name="TfsSoapBinding">
    <textMessageEncoding messageVersion="Soap12WSAddressing10" />
    <httpsTransport authenticationScheme="Ntlm" manualAddressing="true" />

Restart IIS (iisreset) and restart the build service.

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