How to: Reference Windows Symbol Information


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The Visual Studio Profiling Tools use symbol (.pdb) files to resolve symbolic names such as function names in program binaries. You can follow these steps to automatically download and update the correct .pdb files for the version of Windows on the local computer.


This setting does not affect existing reports. Only reports created after specifying the symbol server will have the symbol information.

For more information, see Specify Symbol (.pdb) and Source Files.

To use the Microsoft symbol server

  1. Create a folder to contain the symbol file information, such as C:\SymbolCache.

  2. On the Tools menu, click Options.

    The Options dialog box appears.

  3. Expand the Debugging tree, and then click Symbols.

  4. In the Symbol file (.pdb) locations, select Microsoft Symbol Servers

  5. In the Cache symbols from the symbol server to this directory, type the path of the folder that was created in step 1, for example:


    You can also click the ellipsis button (...) and then select a directory from the Browse for Folder dialog box.

See Also

Configuring Performance Sessions
How to: Serialize Symbol Information