Going Deep

Inside Windows 7: RADAR - Windows Automatic Memory Leak Detection

Download this episode

Download Video


RADAR is a memory leak detection technology built into Windows 7 and integrated with Watson (error reporting) and AutoBug (automatic bug filing). It allows Microsoft product teams and third parties to discover and fix memory leaks early in the product cycle and after release. Since RADAR runs on customer machines, leaks can be caught during public betas, after release, and by third parties, thus ridding the entire ecosystem of memory leaks. RADAR-shipped components are highly optimized to have no appreciable performance impact.
Meet RADAR developers Stephan Doll, Baskar Sridharan, Anthony Lorelli‎ and Keshava Subramanya. They dig into the architecture, design and implementation of this great technology. RADAR helps make Windows more reliable and stable by automatically pinpointing memory leaks in code that are then packaged up in bug reports that land in the hands of developers responsible for the memory leaking code. This means quicker to market solutions and knowledge gain that will prevent the same bugs from cropping up again: developers learn what went wrong and why so wthey won't make the same mistakes again. You'll learn about the most common mistakes made and you should use this to prevent memory leaks in your own native code.

Tune in. Learn.



Available formats for this video:

Actual format may change based on video formats available and browser capability.

    The Discussion

    • ZippyV

      Does this mean that there are no memory leaks in Windows (except 3th party drivers)?

    • Charles

      Of course not. It means that when memory leaks happen on Windows, chances are RADAR will detect them and send accurate information (sans personally identifiable information, of course) back to the mothership for bug triage and correction.


      Did you watch and listen to the conversation? Smiley

    • ZippyV

      Well the data captured during the beta and RC must have caught a lot of them, no?


      Also, how can 3th party developers use radar?

    • Charles

      Indeed. Memory leaks were found. The point, though, is that RADAR is running on Win7 RTM too and data is still being captured (when a leak is detected). So, yes, bugs were fixed and shipped in RTM. Chances are, new bugs will emerge. When it happens in 3rd party software, the Windows team provides the information to the right ISVs. As of now, RADAR is not hooked into 3rd party bug filing processes. As stated in the video, that may change in the future. For sure, we do not only capture MS offending code... Let's say Firefox leaks memory. That information is detected, captured and packaged by RADAR and sent to MS via Windows telemetry services. We will then communicate the gory details to the Firefox development team so they can fix their code.



    • mwithopf

      I'd like to know if RADAR is publicly available?

      Wouldn't it be great if 3rd party software developers could use it to find their own bugs,

      instead of waiting for the Window team to find the bugs and leaks for them...?

    • RustyNugget

      Can you detect RAM failures from "real" programming hickups?

      I recently had faulty RAM installed and programs crashed, will sending in the reports help or hurt research?

    • Charles

      Help. Windows 7 is capable of detecting memory hardware failures (you would need to run the memory diagnostics tool at boot-up).

    • Chris_​Chopping

      I see quite a few (14) registry entries which contain the string 


      Can I delete them? 

      Can anyone tell me how to decode the date information?

    • golnazal

      opening thread

    Comments closed

    Comments have been closed since this content was published more than 30 days ago, but if you'd like to continue the conversation, please create a new thread in our Forums, or Contact Us and let us know.