How to: Start Spy++

You can start Spy++ either from Visual Studio or at a command prompt.

When you start Spy++, if a message is displayed to ask permission to make changes to the computer, click Yes.


You can run only one instance of Spy++. If you try to run another instance, it just causes the currently running instance to get the focus.

To start Spy++ from Visual Studio

  • On the Tools menu, click Spy++.

    Because Spy++ runs independently, after you start it, you can close Visual Studio.


    When you log messages with Spy++, it may cause the operating system to perform more slowly.

To start Spy++ at a command prompt

  1. In a Command Prompt window, change directories to the folder that contains spyxx.exe. Typically, the path of this folder is ..\Visual Studio installation folder\Common7\Tools\.

  2. Type spyxx.exe and then press ENTER.