26. MISSING CRASH DUMP FILES

Impressive though Windows 7, 10 are, it’ll crash sometimes, and if you’ve installed diagnostic software like the Windows debugging tools then you’ll want the crash dump file to hand for further investigations. And yet in some situations you’ll find the memory.dmp file never appears. So what’s going on?

First, click Start, right-click Computer and select Properties > Advanced System Settings > Startup and Recovery Settings. Make sure that “Write debugging information” is set to something other than “none”, and that “Dump file” is the default “%SystemRoot%\MEMORY.DMP”.

If that’s all correct then check your free hard drive space. If your system isn’t on a domain, and has less than 25GB free, then Windows 7 will no longer keep a crash dump file. If you’d like to change that, launch REGEDIT, browse to HKEY_LOCAL_MACHINE\SYSTEM\CurrentControlSet\Control\CrashControl, create a new DWORD value called AlwaysKeepMemoryDump, set it to 1, and in future the crash dump file will always be preserved.

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