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How to understand mini crash dumps

Posted on 2008-10-29
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Last Modified: 2012-05-05
Hi chaps,

I have some minidump files from an XP machine that spontaneous blue screens then reboots. I'd like to read them (and also learn how to read them for future issues) however we have Vista machines here.

The offline XP Crash tool doesnt install on Vista it seems, and doesnt even want to install on XP SP3. If we set up an SP2 VM for it it varyingly returns gives us 404 pages or Server Busy pages, so that doesnt help.

I've read how to use the windbg debugging tool to get the info out, but I dont know whether I can use it on a machine that *isnt* the machine the dump was created on (all the instructions are for doing it on the same machine).

Or is there another, easier, way ?

Olly
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Question by:stonneway
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danlein earned 250 total points
ID: 22833840
Hey Olly:

WinDbg will work on other machines.  you just need to copy the dump file to the machine you use WinDbg on.  

I answered a question a bit back which stated:

for minidumps i mostly use debugging tools for windows which you can find here:

http://www.microsoft.com/whdc/devtools/debugging/default.mspx

and use WinDbg

To enter a symbol path in WinDbg, which is necessary for debugging,
 

   1.      On the File menu, click Symbol Path.
   2.      In the Symbol Search Path window, enter the following:

      srv*c:\cache*http://msdl.microsoft.com/download/symbols;

The resulting output from the program will give you good results as well as help you find the culprit, whether it be a driver, etc.  

Let me know how this works for you.

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