Special Command—Execute Commands from a Customized User Interface with .cmdtree

A few weeks ago I received an e-mail from Brad Wilson, a Support Escalation Engineer from the OCS (Office Communications Server) team. Brad asked me about the .cmdtree command and I told him I’ve never configured it before. A few days ago he sent me another e-mail saying he figured out how to use this command. I decided to try it and… wow! Pretty cool!

So, here is the thing, you can use this technique to create a window that has your most used commands or those that you never remember how to use. J

Brad thanks for sharing it! Readers, again I repeat myself here: I bet you’re going to like it!

Here are the steps:

a) Create a text file, CMDTREE.TXT, with your commands, using the example below as a template. You can modify sections between {} the way you want:

windbg ANSI Command Tree 1.0

title {"Common Commands"}


{"Common Commands"}


  {"Time of dump"} {".time"}

  {"Process being debugged"} {"|"}

  {"Dump Location"} {"||"}

  {"Create server on port 9999"} {".server tcp:port=9999"}

  {"Show remote connections"} {".clients"}

  {"Process Environment Block"} {"!peb"}


  {"Open Log"} {".logopen /t /u /d"}

  {"Close Log"} {".logclose"}


  {"All Modules"} {"lm D sm"}

  {"Loaded Modules"} {"lmo D sm"}

  {"Loaded Modules (verbose)"} {"lmvo D sm"}

  {"Modules w/o symbols"} {"lme D sm"}


  {"Set frame length to 2000"} {".kframes 2000"}

  {"Dump current stack w/ DML"} {"kpM 1000"}

  {"Dump stacks without private info"} {"knL 1000"}

  {"Dump stacks with all parameters"} {"kPn 1000"}

  {"Dump stacks (distance from last frame)"} {"kf 1000"}

  {"Dump stacks with Frame Pointer Omission"} {"kvn 1000"}

  {"Dump all stack"} {"~*kbn 1000"}

  {"Dump unique stacks"} {"!uniqstack -pn"}

  {"Thread environment block"} {"!teb"}

  {"Move to next frame"} {".f+"}

  {"Move to previous frame"} {".f-"}


  {"Dump heaps"} {"!heap -a"}

 {"Automated Task"}

  {"!analyze"} {"!analyze -v"}

  {"Locks"} {"!ntsdexts.locks"}

  {"CPU time for User and Kernel Mode"} {"!runaway 7"}


  {"Load sos"} {".loadby sos mscorwks"}

  {"clrstack"} {"!clrstack"}

  {"Threads"} {"!threads"}

  {"Stack Objects"} {"!dso"}

  {"Exceptions"} {"!dae"}


b) Save the text file in the same folder your WinDbg is installed. Mine is in c:\debuggers.

c) Open a dump file, load the symbols, then use this command:


.cmdtree CMDTREE.TXT

d) The command above will create a new WinDbg window that has your commands. You can double click one item from the tree view window to execute the command.


See you on my next article.