Dr Watson info (WinXP and Windows 2003 only)

Dr. Watson is a program error debugger that detects and diagnoses program errors and creates User.dmpand DrWtsn32.logfiles to contain the diagnostic data.

The DrWtsn32.logfile is appended each time a program error occurs, whilst the User.dmpfile is overwritten each time.

The location of these files is dependent on the version of Microsoft Windows you are running.

Table 1 —Location of Dr Watson files.
OSFile location
Windows NT%systemroot%
Windows 2000%systemdrive%\Documents and Settings\All Users\Documents\DrWatson
Windows XP%systemdrive%\Documents and Settings\All Users\Application Data\Microsoft\Dr Watson

The following table provides a number of Dr Watson registry hacks.

Table 2 — Dr Watson registry hacks.
HIV KeyNameTypeValue
To turn off the Dr Watson debugger.
KEY_LOCAL_MACHINE\SOFTWARE\Microsoft\Windows NT\CurrentVersion\AeDebugAutoREG_DWORD0 disable
1 enable
To change the folder for log files
The AppendToLogFile value controls whether to create a new log file or appends data to the old log.
1 append
The CrashDumpFile value controls the path and filename used when creating a crash dump file.
The CreateCrashDump value controls whether it creates a crash dump file after an application crash.
KEY_LOCAL_MACHINE\SOFTWARE\Microsoft\DrWatsonCreateCrashDumpREG_DWORD0 disable
1 enable
The DumpAllThreads value controls whether if it should dump the contents of all threads from an application error.
KEY_LOCAL_MACHINE\SOFTWARE\Microsoft\DrWatsonDumpAllThreadsREG_DWORD0 disable
1 enable
The DumpSymbols value controls whether it should dump the contents of the symbol tables from an application error.
KEY_LOCAL_MACHINE\SOFTWARE\Microsoft\DrWatsonDumpSymbolsREG_DWORD0 disable
1 enable
The SoundNotification value controls whether to play a wav file when an application error occurs.
KEY_LOCAL_MACHINE\SOFTWARE\Microsoft\DrWatsonSoundNotificationREG_DWORD0 disable
1 enable
The WaveFile value specifies the path and filename of the wave file to be played.
The VisualNotification value controls whether it displays a popup message when it encounters an application error.
KEY_LOCAL_MACHINE\SOFTWARE\Microsoft\DrWatsonVisualNotificationREG_DWORD0 disable
0 enable
There are various debugger utilities besides Dr Watson. To switch back to Dr Watson, should another debugger be enabled
KEY_LOCAL_MACHINE\SOFTWARE\Microsoft\Windows NT\CurrentVersion\AeDebugDebuggerREG_SZdrwtsn32 -p %ld -e %ld -g