The "Attach to process" list is empty in Visual C++ debugger


In the debugger, the "Attach to process" list is empty.

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The "Attach to process" list is populated using a performance counter API. Depending on the environment and the installed performance counter DLLs, the code to populate the list may fail.

This bug only affects the "Attach to process" list when running on Windows NT and Windows 2000.


Resolution 1

You should be able to attach to the process using Task Manager:
  1. Enable just-in-time debugging (JIT):
    1. In Visual C++, on the Tools menu, click Options.
    2. On the Debug tab, make sure that Just-in-time debugging is selected.
  2. Run Task Manager and select the process to attach to. Right-click and select Debug.

Resolution 2

  1. Run Task Manager and get the process ID for the process you want to debug.
  2. At a command prompt enter the following:msdev -p <processid>
This will start Visual C++ and will attach to the process specified.


Microsoft has confirmed that this is a bug in the Microsoft products that are listed at the beginning of this article. This bug was corrected in the latest service pack for Visual Studio 6.0.

For additional information about Visual Studio service packs, click the following article numbers to view the articles in the Microsoft Knowledge Base:
194022 INFO: Visual Studio 6.0 Service Packs, What, Where, Why

194295 HOWTO: Tell That a Visual Studio Service Pack Is Installed
To download the latest Visual Studio service pack, visit the following Microsoft Web site:

More Information

If the steps for Resolution 2 do not help, and if Resolution 1 is unsatisfactory, check the version of the operating system. Even though this bug is known to occur on Windows NT 4.0 as well Windows 2000, Resolution 2 may not work on Windows 2000. You may need to go back to a released version of Windows NT.