Autoexp.dat not working in Visual Studio 2005?


As this was reported twice in the space of a week internally, I figured that external users may be hitting this too. The internal emails were along the lines of  "I added my custom types to autoexp.dat and they don't work". In both cases this was because they were added at the end of the file, but if you look carefully at the 2K5 default version of the file the end is in the [Visualizer] section: auto expand rules need to be in the [AutoExpand] section.

There are close to no official docs on this file, sorry, that was kind of my fault. If VS-next still doesn't have any docs, it will be someone else's fault.

Comments (11)

  1. Jim Griesmer says:

    No, it’ll still be your fault.  I promise.  🙂

  2. srikantb says:

    I tried with the example located in MSDN, unfortunately this didnt work  

    Example documentation was not very clear as well. I have found some blogs where people complained that unless a complete path is specified the custom dll is not loaded

    Srikanth B

  3. Andy-Pennell says:

    Srikantb: Are you referring to the EEAddIn sample? Yes, a complete path to the DLL is required. If you supply more details (e.g. what does "didnt work" mean?) I will try and help.

  4. srikantb says:

    Thanks for the reply,Would reply back to your mail box

  5. Andy-Pennell says:

    Looks like the VS2005 Sample is broken: see this thread for the fixes: http://www.codecomments.com/Debugger/message840933.html

  6. Frank says:

    It seems, that COleDateTime isn´t supported by autoexp.dat. Because COleDateTime is shown as m_dt=38853.724988425929, I added a function to EEAddin sample. I wanted to format it as string like "dd-mm-yyyy", but nothing happens. All my other data types work fine.

    Has anyone an idea?

    Regards, Frank

  7. Andy-Pennell says:

    Frank, if by "nothing happens" you mean it still displays as a double, then you probably have the entry in the wrong section of autoexp.dat, or in the wrong namespace. Look at the Type column in the Watch or Locals window to see the fully qualified type name.

    If problems persist post your new line from autoexp.dat and what exactly gets displayed for it in the Watch window.

  8. Frank says:

    Thanks for the tip. The type is now ATL::COleDateTime. That´s the difference to VC6.

    Regards, Frank

  9. Gustavo says:

    Are you aware of non-managed data-type simply disappearing out of debug when running and debugging a managed code?  A made a simple structure and added to autoexp.dat. When not running managed code it works. When running mixed code, I think it ignores the hint.

  10. stojasv says:

    Thanks for yor excellent description of how auotexp.dat works. I did as you said and moved my user definded types to the right block, [auotexpand] and now it works fine.

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