I use a bunch of Sysinternals tools for diagnosing problems while developing. My two favorites are:
- Process Explorer, a more fully-featured version of Task Manager that can report environment variables for running processes, show loaded DLLs and even display callstacks. It can also tell you which process is currently accessing a certain file or DLL, which is useful if you're trying to delete a file and getting a 'file is in use and cannot be deleted' error.
- Process Monitor, which can record all accesses to files, disks and the registry. Very useful for diagnosing complicated scenarios with multi-process development.
Recently the Sysinternals tools have been hosted on a new live site that can be accessed via the web, or as a file share. Now I can easily run a Sysinternals tool and be sure that it is the newest version:
I can also update my own local cache of useful tools by periodically copying from the file share.