Exception handling – we keep making same mistakes

Exception handling in your application is not a new topic. A lot has been said and written about this topic but we still see developers making same mistake again and again. I am not going to write a blog on something that has been talked about so many times before, however, I would like to share two specific and recent links where industry experts talks about their experiences on some common pitfalls they see around error managment and what to do if you need to debug those issues.

1. John Robbins did a 3 parts webcast for channel 9 about advanced debugging. I love listening to John as he has this natual ability to talk about a difficult subject like advanced debugging while keeping it interesting and engaging for the audience. In the third part of this series (that could be found here), he drew following picture to depict the timeline as when application starts, then the point in time when application actually encountered an issue where it should have died and finally when the application actually died. I find this very interesting, as quite recently I had to debug exactly the same situation where application was throwing an exception but it was been swallowed in the code and let the application run. As a result, users were getting undesired behaviours.

2.  Brad Linscott from Microsoft Premier field engineering team recently did a six parts webcast for Channel 9 about various aspects of production debugging. In the first part of this series (that could be found here), he used following slide where he is talking about tips on debugging excpetions. One of the key tip he talked about is the significance of timing as when to generate crash dump file, otherwise, you could loose lot of useful information to effectively troubleshoot the problem.

Until next, happy debugging.

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