Is there any way to debug/gather some diagnostic information in case a windows machine hangs/freezes to get some clue about what caused the hang/freeze., just like linux has

Magic_SysRq key

Is there any way one can connect to a frozen/hanged windows to get some log having some memory info, process info, registers/flags status info from the OS. Or some way to kill the process which could have caused the freeze. Basically try to give some restore command to saLvage the hanged situation?

Is it possible?


2 Answers 2


Closest thing I can think of is enabling RightCtrl+ScrollLock, which will bluescreen the machine (thus creating a memory dump). This can be examined in WinDBG, with which you will be able to examine everything (threads, registers, memory, etc).


Info about doing so with a USB keyboard (you need Vista/WS 2008 SP1 or later, plus this hotfix):

Here are some troubleshooting steps in case it doesn't work:

Here's more general info about creating a memory dump:
http://support.microsoft.com/kb/972110 (WS 2003)
http://support.microsoft.com/kb/969028 (WS 2008)

  • 1
    AFAIK Ctrl-ScrollLock should be enabled manually. It does nothing without registry modification
    – kolypto
    Dec 25, 2009 at 15:28

You need to have windbg installed.

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