Notes from a dark corner

Debugging ASP.NET, the CLR and anything that uses clock cycles.

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  • Blog Post: CLRMD: .NET Crash Dump and Live Process Inspection

    Lee Culver, a software developer on the .NET Runtime team, has shipped an awesome managed code library for anyone interested in analysing memory dumps and the internals of running .NET applications.  Known as CLRMD, this library allows you to write code that does all the kinds of stuff you do with...
  • Blog Post: Tips for successful .NET Debugging with WinDBG

    Here are my tips for pain free .NET debugging with WinDBG 1) Always use a 32-bit debugger for a 32-bit process and a 64-bit debugger for a 64-bit process, both to generate the dump and to analyse it. Use usermode dumps only (managed debugger extensions are not expected to work with kernel mode) and ensure...
  • Blog Post: Long paths and .NET

    I was helping a colleague recently on an issue to do with long file system paths and the challenges and limitations of handling them in .NET. I knew there were issues but could not recall all the details. Anyway, I just came across a wrapper class on Codeplex to assist in handling long paths. The landing...
  • Blog Post: WinForms to WPF Quick reference guide

    I don’t do a lot of WinForms and WPF work but I came across this very handy article with some associated posters to compare WinForms and WPF both in .NET 3.5 / Visual Studio 2008 and .NET 4.0 and Visual Studio 2010 varieties. And this is the direct link to the wallchart/poster. HTH Doug
  • Blog Post: Finding the .NET version in a debug session

    An interesting little question came up on one of our internal discussion groups today. “How can I find in a debug session the version of the .NET runtime being used in the debuggee?” [in an automated/scripted fashion and without using debugger extensions or symbols] Here is what I came up with: 0:029>...
  • Blog Post: Windows® API Code Pack for Microsoft® .NET Framework

    To help .NET developers target Window 7 features we’ve released the Windows® API Code Pack for Microsoft® .NET Framework . Looks like there is a lot of stuff in there! HTH Doug
  • Blog Post: Some ASP.NET, IIS and CLR fixes

    My job involves a wide variety of stuff, from investigation, debugging, diagnosing and solving of specific customer problems through passing on product feedback and bug reports to product groups and mentoring other support engineers on their cases to looking at how we can make our support processes and...
  • Blog Post: Summary of ASP.NET Versions, Updates and Hotfixes

    [Note: November 2010 Some recent fixes added] [Note: September 2009 I am in the process of trying to bring this list up to date. It may not be complete] There is nothing worse than wrestling with a problem for ages only to discover later that there is already a fix for it. I therefore felt it would be...
  • Blog Post: “Failed to load data access DLL, 0x80004005” – OR – What is mscordacwks.dll?

    Ever seen this error in a WinDBG/CDB debug session? Failed to load data access DLL, 0x80004005 Verify that 1) you have a recent build of the debugger (6.2.14 or newer)             2) the file mscordacwks.dll that matches your version of mscorwks...
  • Blog Post: .NET performance counters missing when using WMI to access them

    Windows Management Instrumentation (WMI) among other things exposes to WMI clients performance counters that are present on a system . This is useful because it makes performance counter data accessible to script based clients. It also offers a better way for remote clients to access performance counter...
  • Blog Post: "Error creating control - ControlInstanceName '[text]' could not be set on property 'PropertyName' " in Visual Studio 2008

    One of the cases I've been working on recently is for an issue introduced by Microsoft .NET Framework 3.5 Service Pack 1. The fix has now been finalised and released on the MSDN Code Gallery .   When you get this error the symptoms are like this: You didn't have the problem before applying the service...
  • Blog Post: Recent updates for Microsoft .NET Framework 3.5 SP1

    I wrote previously about fixes that are available for three issues that can occur when you install SP1 for .NET Framework 3.5. In addition to those three CLR issues, there were some other problems caused by the service pack which is why we also released the rather cutely named "Family Update"...
  • Blog Post: Getting the .NET Framework made easy...

    The Microsoft .NET Framework product group have been busy making it easier to find out about and install the latest version of the .NET Framework... a simple URL and a clean UI at http://www.microsoft.com/net/   It's certainly easy to remember. And while I'm at it, worth a mention is the Microsoft...
  • Blog Post: .NET 3.5 Framework SP1 reference sources available

    In mid January the first release of the .NET Framework 3.5 reference sources occurred. In mid February there was a minor update because Vista SP1 and Windows Server 2008 come with a slightly later build of the framework. Also in February Kerem Kusmezer and John Robbins released the NetMassDownloader...
  • Blog Post: Free Microsoft Developer and web design software for full time students

    This sounds like a good deal. Free? Free? Sounds to good to be true :-). But it is. If you are a full time student and into software development, take a look: https://downloads.channel8.msdn.com/Overview.aspx Check the site for details, but at time of writing the products included were: Visual Studio...
  • Blog Post: Uninstalling .NET Framework 3.5 SP1

    You may have a need to uninstall .NET Framework 3.5 SP1, perhaps for testing purposes or because you find it causes you some specific issue with an application you have. If this is the case, it's important to realise that when you install .NET Framework 3.5 SP1 it actually updates the .NET 2.0 bits and...
  • Blog Post: More about .NET Framework 3.5 SP1 and Visual Studio 2008 SP1

    As mentioned yesterday .NET Framework 3.5 SP1 and Visual Studio 2008 SP1 were released. Here is a more extensive set of links that may be useful: Soma's announcement mail with some brief details of the release Microsoft Visual Studio 2008 Service Pack 1 (exe) ( readme ) Microsoft .NET Framework 3.5 Service...
  • Blog Post: Visual Studio 2008 Service Pack 1 and .NET Framework Service Pack 1 available on the download centre

    Now available: Microsoft Visual Studio 2008 Service Pack 1 (exe) ( readme ) Microsoft .NET Framework 3.5 Service Pack 1 (web installer) ( release notes ) Microsoft .NET Framework 3.5 Service Pack 1 (full package) ( release notes ) These are important updates with lots of fixes and new features too. HTH...
  • Blog Post: .NET 3.5 SP1 Beta,Visual Studio futures and Visual Studio present..

    As ever, Scott Guthrie has the most comprehensive announcement blog about Visual Studio 2008 and .NET Framework 3.5 Service Pack 1 Beta but this is no ordinary service pack, this is a service pack packed [sic] with new features as well as fixes. For instance, there are major additions to WPF , IntelliSense...
  • Blog Post: Does DEP/NX affect web applications?

    A while a go when I posted about the .NET Framework 3.5 and 2.0 SP1 being available for download, Kima posed an interesting question in the comments. Kima asked whether the new enforcement of NX compatability by the C# compiler after the application of 2.0 SP1 would affect ASP.NET applications? Specifically...
  • Blog Post: .NET Framework 3.5, 3.0 SP1 and 2.0 SP1 available for download

    Following the earlier news about Visual Studio 2008 and .NET Framework 3.5 shipping, various .NET Framework updates and releases are now available for download: .NET Framework 3.5 (available as a web install or a downloadable full package ) .NET Framework 3.0 SP1 .NET Framework 2.0 SP1 (available...
  • Blog Post: Visual Studio 2008 and .NET Framework 3.5 have shipped!

    Looks like we may all be needing that training kit I blogged about earlier . Soma has just announced that Visual Studio 2008 and .NET Framework 3.5 shipped! I think we can expect lots more download links to go live in the coming hours and days and plenty more blog traffic too. I recently blogged about...
  • Blog Post: Visual Studio 2008 and .NET Framework 3.5 Training Kit released

    Today we have released the Visual Studio 2008 and .NET Framework 3.5 Training Kit This 123Mb download is packed with 28 PowerPoint presentations, 20 demos and 20 labs. Good stuff DPE team! Cheers Doug
  • Blog Post: A reading list for debugging, .NET, CLR, WinDBG etc

    I'm often asked "Where can I learn more about doing this kind of stuff?", this "stuff" being debugging with WinDBG, understanding how .NET works, looking at dump files and generally figuring out what's gone wrong with .NET applications. I started assembling this list sometime ago and it is by no means...
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