Using pdb to create a Windows crashdump

Starting with MySQL 5.1.12 the Program Database files (extension pdb) are included in the Noinstall distribution of MySQL. These files provide information for debugging your MySQL installation in the event of a problem.

The PDB file contains more detailed information about mysqld and other tools that enables more detailed trace and dump files to be created. You can use these with Dr Watson, WinDbg and Visual Studio to debug mysqld.

For more information on PDB files, see Microsoft Knowledge Base Article 121366. For more information on the debugging options available, see Debugging Tools for Windows.

Dr Watson is installed with all Windows distributions, but if you have installed Windows development tools, Dr Watson may have been replaced with WinDbg, the debugger included with Visual Studio, or the debugging tools provided with Borland or Delphi.

To generate a crash file using Dr Watson, follow these steps:

  1. Start Dr Watson by running drwtsn32.exe interactively using the -i option:

    C:\> drwtsn32 -i
  2. Set the Log File Path to the directory where you want to store trace files.

  3. Make sure Dump All Thread Contexts and Append To Existing Log File.

  4. Uncheck Dump Symbol Table, Visual Notification, Sound Notification and Create Crash Dump File.

  5. Set the Number of Instructions to a suitable value to capture enough calls in the stacktrace. A value of at 25 should be enough.

Note that the file generated can become very large.