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I've searched the web for answers, but the only thing I can come up with is that I need the Pro or Team edition to be able to run remote debugger. Is that true? Is there a way around it or another way to do remote debugging?

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Wouldn't this be a StackOverflow question? –  Schnapple Sep 17 '09 at 16:03
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3 Answers

up vote 2 down vote accepted

According to this MSDN product feature comparison, Visual Studio 2005 Standard does not support remote dubugging; only local debugging is supported.

Microsoft offers an alternate (remote) debugger free of charge: WinDbg. And here is a useful Overview of WinDbg remote debugging

Advanced Windows Debugging by Mario Hewardt, Daniel Pravat is a very good book to get you started with WinDbg: The first few chapters give a very detailed overview of debuggers, and how to use WinDbg specifically. The various ways to start a remote debugging session are covered. The rest of the book is filled with detailed debugging case studies, which you don't have to read.

The initial learning curve for WinDbg is steeper than Visual Studio, but later WinDbg is the faster and more powerful debugger. There are also less "gotchas." For example, it is much easier to diagnose why symbols aren't being loaded, and get them loaded correctly.

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I think remote debugging is possible from Visual Studio Standard, Professional & Team Editions. This article say how (Note its fr ASP.NET but applicable to any application): http://support.microsoft.com/kb/910448

Also note that in the end the "APPLIES TO" field contains:

  • Microsoft ASP.NET 2.0
  • Microsoft ASP.NET 1.1
  • Microsoft ASP.NET 1.0

Microsoft Visual Studio 2005 Standard Edition


  • Microsoft Visual Studio 2005 Professional Edition
  • Microsoft Visual Studio 2005 Express Edition
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Microsoft's official documents seem to offer contradictory answers here. (You can see this by comparing wonsungi and Ganesh's answers.) All I can add is that poking around my VS2005 Standard install on Windows 7, it feels like remote debugging isn't possible:

If remote debugging is supported in VS2005 Standard, then there should be some way, in the Tools...Attach to Process dialog, to specify a remote machine name. But there doesn't seem to be any. For "Transport", I have two choices, "Default" and "Smart Device". Neither is very promising:

If I chose "Default", then the Qualifier (where it looks like you might be able to change the machine name) gets grayed out, and, furthermore, the text under "Transport Information" reads "Select a local process to debug". http://www.cprogramming.com/tutorial/visual_studio_remote_debugging.html has some pictures suggesting that, in other editions/versions of Visual Studio, you would see other Transport options saying "Remote something-or-other".

If I chose "Smart Device", then I find stuff that's relevant for attaching to smartphones and smartphone emulators, not remote server machines.

I went back to my VS2005 installer to see if I might have failed to check some "enable remote debugging" checkbox, but I didn't see one there.

So it doesn't seem like remote debugging is possible. But if anyone does find a way to enable it, I too would like to hear it.

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