My "dual-core" VM has one core being totally wasted by a constantly running Dr Watson process (provided by the .Net Runtime), and I can't figure out how to stop if from running.

When it runs in conjunction with the timed sharepoint search service (once every 10min), they both consume 2 cores worth of CPU causing denial of service to the IIS processes that service the users of the box, therefore making Sharepoint entirely unusuable.


dw20.exe starts up all the time, and it runs constantly at 100% of one core.

  • Dedicated Sharepoint (web front end and index server) VMware VM.
  • Windows Server 2008,
  • Msinfo32 output: http://pastebin.org/410798

I have the identical problem to this fellow: How do you shut Dr. Watson reporting off on Windows Server 2008?, but following the link provided and turning off Windows Error Reporting does not stop it from running.

The process is an executable called dw20.exe, and it lives in: C:\Windows\Microsoft.NET\Framework64\v2.0.50727

I have tried renaming or deleting this file, via several methods (logged in as Admin), but cannot seem to do it. Save taking the box down, and mounting the filesystem under linux and renaming it, I can't think now of a way to stop it running. I've tried Unlocker 1.8.9, Killbox, command line (right-click, run as Administrator).

Can you think of how I can stop this process DOSing my Sharepoint box, keeping the current architecture? (I realise by setting up another Sharepoint machine to do the indexing, this would stop the index service using a core...)

I suppose I could try renaming the executable by booting the server into the recovery console, or mounting the windows filesystem under a linux livecd, but then I'd worry about the process that trying to execute it in the first place - hopefully that won't go crazy when it can't find it...

  • 1
    You do realize the REASON it runs? What about fixing the crashing process instead of trying to play around with the debug help. Use the dumps.
    – TomTom
    Jul 22, 2010 at 8:20
  • 2
    Fixing the REASON it's running is equivalent to "stopping it running". If you have some actual useful advice on helping me determine the "REASON", then I'd love to hear that. "Use the dumps" is the least helpful thing I've ever heard. You may as well say "this question is answered", without answering it. How, pray tell, do I "Use the dumps".
    – Kenny
    Jul 22, 2010 at 11:38
  • 1
    Did I mention that the DR Watson process just keeps running? I would love to find some output from it...
    – Kenny
    Jul 22, 2010 at 11:44

1 Answer 1


The dw20.exe is the Windows Error Reporting tool. According to this article http://support.microsoft.com/kb/841477 it is collecting information every time an Office application stops working.

In that article are a number of registry keys you can change to disable dw20.exe.

It might also be worth trying to figure out what process is crashing.

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