PerfWatson2 – everything you need to know

Recently, a colleague of mine asked about a strange process showed up in his Task Manager called PerfWatson2.exe that is hogging his RAM and making system slow if he doesn’t close it.

If you’re in the same position, this post is going to show you what is PerfWatson2, why it is running in the background, is it harmful and how to disable it permanently.

What is PerfWatson2


PerfWatson2 is a part of Microsoft Visual Studio IDE and it’s not some kind of malware. Microsoft Visual Studio PerfWatson tracks the responsiveness of the Visual Studio process and collects diagnostic information when unresponsive.

Whenever Visual Studio UI thread hangs or become unresponsive, PerfWatson extension logs these issues and automatically and anonymously reports back to Microsoft.

Visual Studio runs a few separate process in the background to gather additional information and perform other tasks simultaneously, such as live unit testing or code analyzing.

These additional processes help increase Visual Studio overall performance, making Visual Studio respond faster when running long, resource-intensive jobs and avoid interface freezing.

Here is the full list of out-of-proc processes used by Visual Studio here from Microsoft.

Where is PerfWatson2.exe located?

PerfWatson2.exe is usually located in one of the two locations below.

C:Program FilesMicrosoft Visual Studio [version number]Common7IDEPerfWatson2.exe
C:Program FilesMicrosoft Visual Studio[version number]CommunityCommon7IDEPerfWatson2.exe

How to disable Perfwatson2.exe

To disable PerfWatson2 in Visual Studio 2019 please follow the steps below.

Find and click Send Feedback icon located in the upper right corner of the Visual Studio window, select Settings..


Alternatively, you can access the same Settings.. from Help > Send Feedback > Settings.. in the menu bar.

help menusettings

In the section “Would you like to participate in the Visual Studio Experience Improvement Program”, set the radio button to “No”. Then click on the OK button.


We hope that by the end of this post, you now understood what is PerfWatson2 and how to disable it.

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