Wednesday, September 3, 2008

Replay Debugging works with Windows

I have not been posting for quite some time. Replay Debugging team in VMware was busy with new feature of VMware Workstation 6.5: Replay Debugging of Windows applications.

What we did was integrating Visual Studio plugin for Workstation with Record/Replay technology. You can now develop your application with Visual Studio, and then with a few mouse clicks launch it in a VM in recording mode. You can then replay recording as many times as you want, using all the debugging facilities Visual Studio provides.

But we did not stop at that. We also implemented unique "reverse execution" feature. Say, if you are debugging a memory corruption, you can put watchpoint on corrupted memory and then hit "Reverse Continue" in Visual Studio plugin menu - and we'll navigate the recording right to the place where memory was last written to.

My colleague E Lewis put a lot more information about Replay Debugging for Windows at the the appropriately named There are howtos, tips, tricks and even video presentations showing the feature there.

If you have not already, you can grab latest Workstation build here. Please post your comments, suggestions, bug reports in our forum. Have fun!


Tomato Dad said...

I'm trying to debug the NtLdr.
Is it possible to do that in vmware?
Vmware leaves a tcp port for gdb, but I can't load the symbol for windows!
How shall I do?

mr3 said...

I have similar problem. I want to trace the post process of windows. But it seems that gdb couldn't display assmble code and import symbol files. Is there any document for the vmware debug function?

Slava said...

Hi Tomato Dad and mr3. We do not support debugging Windows applications with gdb, but we do support it with Visual Studio. Please take a look at You may also ask in forums as they are checked on a more regular basis than comments here. The forum is here:

P.S. I had to disable comments in this blog due to spam that was added to some other posts. Sorry for inconvenience. Please post questions and suggestions in the forum. Thank you.