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Local Debugging (hwc.exe)

Here are few steps that can guide you, to use hwc.exe to launch an ASP.NET application, from your local machine (Windows only), helps in debugging your application very easily

  • Download the latest version of hwc.exe from
  • Install four IIS features in you windows machine, you can run PS as Administrator and execute the below commands
Enable-WindowsOptionalFeature -Online -All -FeatureName IIS-WebServer
Enable-WindowsOptionalFeature -Online -All -FeatureName IIS-WebSockets
Enable-WindowsOptionalFeature -Online -All -FeatureName IIS-HostableWebCore
Enable-WindowsOptionalFeature -Online -All -FeatureName IIS-ASPNET45
  • Restart your machine, after successful execution of the above commands
  • Place the downloaded hwc.exe file in the folder where your applications web.config resides OR optionally you can can pass the path of the application as argument -appRootPath
  • In PowerShell, navigate to the folder and run the following command, with your choice of port. Make sure that you are running as Administrator to work properly
& { $env:PORT=5000; .\hwc.exe; }

OR (if application is in a different path)

& { $env:PORT=5000; .\hwc.exe -appRootPath "<Path of the application>" }
  • Launch your application in the browser of your choice, having the url as below, make sure the port is same as the one given above.
  • You should be able to see your application running, now that you can attach hwc.exe to the VS Debugger (Alt+D+P) and enjoy debugging
Hope you have fun debugging!
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