Starts Debug.exe, a program you can use to test and debug MS-DOS executable files. Used without parameters, debug starts Debug.exe and the debug prompt appears, which is represented by a hyphen (-).


debug [[Drive**:**][Path] FileName [parameters]]


[ Drive : ][ Path ] FileName   : Specifies the location and name of the executable file that you want to test.

parameters   : Specifies any command-line information required by the executable file that you want to test.

? : Displays a list of debug subcommands.


  • Windows XP does not use this command. It is accepted only for compatibility with MS-DOS files. 

  • Using MS-DOS subsystem commands

    Debug is a MS-DOS subsystem command that runs under WOW/NTVDM.

  • Separating command parameters

    You can separate parameters with a comma or white space, but these separators are required only between two hexadecimal values. For example, the following commands are equivalent:

    dcs:100 110

    d cs:100 110


  • Using debug subcommands

    There are several debug subcommands that you can use. For more information about debug subcommands, see Related Topics.

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Information that the user must supply


Elements that the user must type exactly as shown

Ellipsis (...)

Parameter that can be repeated several times in a command line

Between brackets ([])

Optional items

Between braces ({}); choices separated by pipe (|). Example: {even|odd}

Set of choices from which the user must choose only one

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Code or program output

Command-line reference A-Z

Debug subcommands