Category Archives: Coding

VS.NET 2013 crash on building a WIX project

I was having an issue where building my WIX projects caused Visual Studio to crash. I opened up the Visual Studio activity log located at %APPDATA%\Microsoft\VisualStudio\11.0\ActivityLog.xml

Saw the following error –

System.NullReferenceException: Object reference not set to an instance of an object. at Microsoft.VisualStudio.Debugger.Parallel.UI.ThreadMarkerGenerator.LocationMatchesTagger(DocumentContext location, MarkerTagger tagger) at Microsoft.VisualStudio.Debugger.Parallel.UI.ThreadMarkerGenerator.<>c__DisplayClass1.<GetMarkersForTagger>b__0(ThreadMarker marker) at System.Linq.Enumerable.WhereListIterator`1.MoveNext() at Microsoft.VisualStudio.Debugger.Parallel.Extension.MarkerTagger.<GenerateTagList>d__a.MoveNext() at System.Linq.Buffer`1..ctor(IEnumerable`1 source) at System.Linq.Enumerable.ToArray[TSource](IEnumerable`1 source) at Microsoft.VisualStudio.Debugger.Parallel.Extension.MarkerTagger..ctor(ITextBuffer buffer, ITextDocument document) at Microsoft.VisualStudio.Debugger.Parallel.Extension.MarkerTaggerProvider.CreateTagger[T](ITextBuffer buffer) at Microsoft.VisualStudio.Text.Tagging.Implementation.TagAggregator`1.GatherTaggers(ITextBuffer textBuffer)

It helpfully also said that the source of the error was ‘Editor or Editor Extension’. That was good, because the stack trace wasn’t very revealing.

Luckily, I don’t have a ton of extensions and the culprit turned out to be the Code Digger extension.

Googling/ binging didn’t help very much, although apparently there is a known cause that causes the same crash, more details at http://channel9.msdn.com/Forums/Feedback/Having-both-Wix-and-Visual-Studio-Achievement-causes-crash

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Reset toolbox visual studio

You can reset all the items in visual studio toolbox, by right clicking and ‘Reset Toolbox’.

Sometimes that doesn’t quite work, especially if the toolbox keeps crashing or is corrupted and shows extraneous items. When a more brute force approach is called for, delete all *.tbd files from

%AppData%\Local\Microsoft\VisualStudio\<version>\