Windows Explored

Everyday Windows Desktop Support, Advanced Troubleshooting & Other OS Tidbits

Enable Process & Service Crash Archiving in Vista/Win7

Posted by William Diaz on August 11, 2010

Windows Vista and 7, unlike Windows XP, do not come enabled with a post-mortem debugger out of the box . But you can enable crash dump archiving by editing the Windows registry.

  • Create a new key called LocalDumps in HKLM\Software\Microsoft\Windows\Windows Error Reporting (by default it points to %LOCALAPPDATA%\CrashDumps).
    • To change save location, create a new Expandable String Value called DumpFolder with a value of the desired path
    • A DWORD value called DumpCount with a value of decimal 10 will set the max number of dumps to save into this file at 10.
    • A new DWORD value called DumpType with value of 1 or 2 decides the type of dump (1 = minidump, 2 = fulldump).


The crash dump will be created in \Users\UserName\AppData\Local. To change the destination, modify DumpFolder to the desired path.

Alternatively, if the app errors and the process remains running until the error message box is dismissed, you can use the Windows Task Manager to manually dump the process by right-clicking it and choosing Create Dump File.

See this MSDN article here for more details.


3 Responses to “Enable Process & Service Crash Archiving in Vista/Win7”

  1. […] user mode exception handling. Via a registry edit, this can be done, and I already covered it here or see this MSDN page: Alternatively, […]

  2. […] enable crash dump archiving in all Windows OS’ after XP by simply creating a registry key. See here or here for details. Share this:EmailPrintDiggFacebookTwitterLinkedInRedditStumbleUponLike […]

  3. […] The event viewer did not produce any events that would help so I configured the system to capture crash dumps for applications. After rebooting, I reproduced the crash by simply opening IE an grabbed one of the dumps and ran […]

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