Visual Studio Debugging issue

Nitin Dhawan, Senior Support Engineer, shares his experience from one of his unique cases which will be of immense benefit for other customers who are struggling with similar issues. Here goes the problem description as provided below:


Recently a customer had reported that debugging in Visual Studio 2012 is failing with a dialog message and then debugging terminates. Nitin has found that user was trying to launch VS2012 debugger via tools menu, Debug -> Attach to Process…

Due to this the following message was being displayed.


Text error message "A 64-bit debugging operation is taking longer than expected. This may be caused by incompatibilities with 3rd party networking software.”

Cause Determined via troubleshooting:

Nitin worked with customer and found that there were many 3rd party  add-ins installed with Visual Studio 2012. Also, using Process explorer we observed many dlls loaded in devenv.exe process which we were suspicious that should be loaded. We decided to uninstall few of them one by one and see if that taken any effect on the debugging process. We uninstalled few of them and the issue still persists. Later, we have narrowed down to a particular set of dlls that were loaded in devenv.exe from a 3rd party vendor and the product was related to Anti-Virus technology. Also found that dll is registered as Layered service provider (LSP) on the machine, which was a clear indication that this is related to networking.


We uninstalled the Anti-Virus and found that the Visual Studio 2012 debugging is working just fine now.  This happened because devenv.exe uses dynamically generated port numbers to communicate with msvsmon.exe and the installed LSP didn’t allow that. Some internet searches shows that many developers have met this issue and in most of the scenarios, 3rd party network software like Anti-Virus and VPN products have faced this issue with VS2012.


Content Developed by: Nitin Dhawan(Senior Support Engineer)

Content Reviewed by: Irfan Ahmed(Senior Support Escalation Engineer)


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