Start HoloLens Emulator without Visual Studio

If you find yourself hitting memory allocation issues for the HoloLens emulator (like this) or you want to run the emulator on a separate machine to that which you are running Visual Studio on it can be useful to have a shortcut to spin it up. You can create a batch file which uses the ‘start’ command to achieve this. You will need the command line that is used to run the emulator – to get this run up Windows Task Manager and click on the Processes tab and right-click anywhere on the column headers to choose which columns are displayed. Choose ‘command line’


Find the Xde.exe process and type it’s command line into a text file and save it (I put mine on the desktop) with a .bat extension.

emulator cmd line

My HL.bat file has the following contents:

start “HoloLens” “C:\Program Files (x86)\Microsoft XDE\10.0.14393.0\XDE.exe” /name “HoloLens Emulator 10.0.14393.0.peted” /displayName “HoloLens Emulator 10.0.14393.0” /vhd “C:\Program Files (x86)\Windows Kits\10\Emulation\HoloLens\10.0.14393.0\flash.vhd” /video “1268×720” /memsize 2048 /language 409 /creatediffdisk “C:\Users\peted\AppData\Local\Microsoft\XDE\10.0.14393.0\dd.1268×720.2048.vhd” /fastShutdown /sku HDE

without any line breaks. Double-clicking the file will start the emulator and you can then deploy to it remotely from a separate machine or use the HoloToolkit Build Window to build and deploy your app.

EDIT: Sysinternals process explorer makes the job of getting the command line much easier as you can copy and paste it:


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4 thoughts on “Start HoloLens Emulator without Visual Studio

  1. Hi,
    When I run this command, a help document gets opened with an OK button. But the emulator never starts.

    Pl, help me get this resolved!

    1. If the help document describes command usage like
      “Emulator version 10.0.14393.0
      xde [/name vmname] …..”,
      check, that you type right command. Placing space between “/name “HoloLens Emulator 10.0.14393.0.peted” ” and “/displayName” helped me.

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