Opening 64-bit Dumps of 32-bit Processes in Visual Studio 2013

Opening 64-bit Dumps of 32-bit Processes in Visual Studio 2013

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Hello, I am Andrew Chan, a Program Manager on the Visual Studio Debugger Team and in this post I would like to go over an improvement we’ve made to opening dumps of 32-bit processes in Visual Studio. In a nutshell, Visual Studio is now able to open dumps of 32-bit processes that are collected using Task Manager on 64-bit versions of Windows!

The Visual Studio dump debugging feature has had a limitation in that it wasn’t able to debug dumps of 32-bit process that were collected using Task Manager on 64-bit versions of Windows. This was because Task Manager on 64-bit versions of Windows creates a 64-bit dump of the 32-bit process which Visual Studio didn’t understand. This was a known limitation that has been documented before.

Now in Visual Studio 2013, this caveat no longer exists because we are able to properly process 64-bit dumps of 32-bit processes. This means that both 32-bit and 64-bit dumps of a 32-bit process can be open without any problems. You can try this yourself by following the steps of our older blog post to obtain a dump and observe how it now works in VS 2013.

If any of you have feedback on this, please let me know in the comments or in our MSDN forum.

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  • cool, now only need to add an hex editor :O

  • Sweet, we have been running into this a lot lately as more and more people have been upgraded to 64-bit images. WinDbg was able to open them just fine, but I'd definitely prefer to use VS whenever possible.

  • Technical debt paid. Good job!

  • @Roman

    Thanks! Let us know if you have any more feedback!

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