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Until someone writes proper string visualisers for the Delphi debugger…

Posted by jpluimers on 2017/10/31

A few tricks to write long strings to files when the Delphi debugger cuts them off (just because they like using 4k buffers internally);

  • TStringStream.Create(lRequestMessage).SaveToFile('c:\temp\temp.txt')
  • TIniFile.Create('c:\a.txt').WriteString('a','a',BigStringVar)
  • TFileStream.Create('c:\a.txt', fmCreate or fmShareDenyNone).WriteBuffer(Pointer(TEncoding.UTF8.GetBytes(BigStringVar))^,Length(TEncoding.UTF8.GetBytes(BigStringVar)))

They all work form the debug inspector, but they do leak memory. See comments below.



PS: Uwe Schuster on G+ and Twitter:

I am not sure if the buffer is not a little bit bigger, but still to small in recent versions. To quote myself “Cannot say it often enough – do use ReadProcessMemory for your visualizer” – Uwe Schuster on Twitter and just build a simple visualizer.


6 Responses to “Until someone writes proper string visualisers for the Delphi debugger…”

  1. Remy said

    All three suggested workarounds are leaking memory/resources because they are not destroying the temp objects they create. They need to be wrapped in a try/finally. And in the case of the TFileStream.WriteBuffer() suggestion, calling TEncoding.GetBytes() twice for a long string is very inefficient and memory wasteful. Cache the result to a variable first. Or use TStreamWriter.Write(String) instead.

    • Remy said

      Also, the TStringStream and TIniFile approaches are not encoding the text to UTF-8, so they are subject to potential data loss for non-ASCII characters. At least the TFileStream approach (better TStreamWriter) takes UTF-8 into account.

    • jpluimers said

      I know. But they all work from the debug inspector. I’ll add a warning.

  2. Geza said

    TFile.WriteAllText(aPath, aContents)

  3. bascyBas said

    Another easy way is to copy it to the clipboard: write a small procedure that doesnt not much more then clipboard.astext := text and you can use that in the evaluate/modify window

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