How to Remove or Disable the System Debugger

By Tammy Clevenger

Updated September 28, 2017

i Microsoft

The system debugger application is included with the standard install of Windows operating systems. In earlier versions of Windows, the system debugger application is named Dr. Watson. The system debugger may not be permanently removed from the operating system. However, the debugger application may be disabled by editing the Windows registry.

Click the "Start" button in Windows.

Select the "Run" option to enter a command.

Type "regedit" in the Run input box and click the "OK" button. The registry editor application window will appear.

Use the registry search function to find the key: HKEY_LOCAL_MACHINE\Software\Microsoft\Windows NT\CurrentVersion\AeDebug

Delete the key: HKEY_LOCAL_MACHINE\Software\Microsoft\Windows NT\CurrentVersion\AeDebug.

Reboot the computer. The system debugger is now disabled.


If you wish to reactivate the system debugger in the future, first export the registry file before making any changes to the registry. To reactivate the debugger, import the original registry file and reboot the computer.