Capture HTTP and HTTPS sessions for debugging using Fiddler
Fiddler is a free web debugging proxy that logs all HTTP/HTTPS traffic between your web application and the Internet. You can download Fiddler from the Telerik official site.
Capturing session data with Fiddler can be useful for troubleshooting scenarios such as:
In case of missing user actions, for example, a special interaction with the application.
You can upload exported Fiddler sessions to your organization's incident management system to facilitate issue resolution.
Create an HTTP session
You can use Fiddler to create an HTTP session of the monitored web application.
In Fiddler, select Tools > Fiddler Options > HTTPS.
Select Capture HTTPS CONNECTs and Decrypt HTTPS traffic.
Select File > Capture Traffic or use F12 to turn off capturing. Clear your browser's cache so that all cached items are removed and downloaded again.
Select File > Capture Traffic or use F12 to start capturing traffic again.
Reproduce the problem scenario to demonstrate that the issue occurred within your application. Make sure the affected page is fully reloaded after restarting traffic capture.
When done, select File > Save > All Sessions.
Common mistakes when using Fiddler
Make sure you've selected the Decrypt HTTPS traffic check box in Fiddler's Settings > Wi-Fi > Modify Network. Also, do not forget to restart your application.
Otherwise, the body size of all requests in Fiddler is
0 bytes, as shown below:
If Decrypt HTTPS traffic is enabled, the requests have an actual size, as shown below:
Make sure to clear the cache in your browser and then reload the page where the problem occurs. This allows the necessary files to reload for the Fiddler session and enables your organization's support team to reliably reproduce the issue.
For example, the following image shows only five requests triggered when you type in the Google search field. This is not enough to reproduce the issue locally.
With the cache cleared and the page reloaded, you can see all the files needed to reproduce the issue and the five requests triggered when you type in the Google search field. This is enough for your organization's support team to reproduce the issue locally and speed up the support process.
Alternatives to Fiddler sessions
If you cannot use Fiddler to create a session, Google Chrome offers an alternative way to export a session for review.
Consider this alternative only as a last resort. It's easier to reproduce a problem with Fiddler.
To collect the HTTP Archive Session (HAR) file using Chrome DevTools
Open Google Chrome and clear the browser cache.
- Use F12 to open Chrome DevTools.
- Go to the Network tab.
Reproduce the problem to demonstrate the issue within your application.
- When done, select all sessions, right-click the blank space, and select Save as HAR with Content.
If you cannot use Fiddler to create a session, Internet Explorer offers an alternative way to export a session for review.
Consider this alternative only as a last resort. It's easier to reproduce a problem scenario with Fiddler.
To export a NetXML session using Internet Explorer Developer Tools
Open Internet Explorer 8+.
Use F12 to open the developer toolbar.
Clear the cache and domain cookies.
Select the Play icon to begin the trace.
Reproduce the problem scenario to demonstrate the issue within your application.
When done, select the Export icon (the disk icon with an arrow to the right) to save the file.