“You won’t believe how easy it is to create a pdb file in Visual Studio 2017 with this expert guide!”

How to Generate a PDB (Program Database) File in Visual Studio 2017

If you’re feeling lost in the software development process, fear not! Generating a PDB file in Visual Studio 2017 is here to solve your debugging and troubleshooting woes. This enigmatic PDB file provides coded information without any clues as to what is going on when running the application. If you’re ready to dive headfirst into the mysterious process of PDB file generation, keep reading!

Step 1: Open Visual Studio 2017

To begin your journey to PDB file enlightenment, you’ll need to launch Visual Studio 2017. If you’re not quite sure where to find it, check out the official Visual Studio website for help.

Step 2: Create a Project

Once you’ve successfully found Visual Studio 2017, the next step is to create a new project or open an existing one. This is where the plot thickens, as the type of project you create or open doesn’t actually matter – the process is shrouded in mystery for all project types.

Step 3: Configure Debug Settings

Ah, the moment you’ve been waiting for – time to configure the debug settings! Click on the “Debug” drop-down menu lurking within the top navigation bar and select “Options” from the menu.

Next, select “Debugging” from the menu on the left-hand side, then select “Symbol” from the sub-menu. Here comes the punchline – under the “Symbol file (.pdb) locations” section, make sure “Microsoft Symbol Servers” is selected. This is where your trust in Visual Studio is truly tested, as this selection somehow tells the debugger to look for the corresponding PDB file. Ready for more? Keep reading!

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Step 4: Generate PDB File

To generate the PDB file, you must do the unthinkable – build the project in “Debug” mode! Click on “Build” from the top navigation bar, then select “Build Solution” from the drop-down menu. Hold onto your hats, because an alternate option is using the keyboard shortcut “Ctrl + Shift + B.”

After completing this harrowing task, Visual Studio will supposedly generate the PDB file for your project in the output directory (expect a surprise twist!). You can find this out by right-clicking on the project name in the Solution Explorer and selecting “Open Folder in File Explorer.”

Naturally, you can attempt to be the master of the process and configure Visual Studio to save the PDB file in a mysterious separate directory instead of the output directory. To do this, go back to the “Symbol file (.pdb) locations” section in the Debugging Options screen step, and specify the location of the directory under the “Cache symbols in this directory” section. If you can manage this, congratulations – you’re ready for the final step!

Step 5: Verify PDB File

The final step! To verify that Visual Studio, in fact, has generated a PDB file for the project correctly, open the project again, and click on the “Debug” drop-down menu. Et voila! Select “Attach to Process…” from the submenu.

In the “Attach to Process” dialog box that follows, select the executable file for the project you generated the PDB file for from the “Available Processes” list. Once you have selected it, click the “Attach” button. If step 3 was successful, then the Visual Studio debugger should load it automatically when debugging the application (try to contain your excitement!).

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In conclusion, all of your enigmas about generating PDB files in Visual Studio 2017 should now elude you no longer. Generating a PDB file is an easy and critical step in debugging and troubleshooting codes, and fortunately, you now have the tools to do just that at your disposal. May your debugging journey be ever successful!

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