Java – find out the return value before returning while debugging in Eclipse


Is it possible to see the return value of a method after the line has been run and before the instruction pointer returns to the calling function?

I am debugging code I can't modify (read: don't want to re-compile a third party library), and sometimes it jumps to code I don't have source to or the return expression has side effects that stop me being able to just run the expression in the Display tab.

Often the return value is used in a compound statement, and so the Variables view will never show me the value (hence wanting to see the result before control returns to the calling function).

UPDATE: I can't use the expression viewer as there are side-effects in the statement.

Best Solution

This feature was added to Eclipse version 4.7 M2 under Eclipse bug 40912.

To use it:

  • step over the return statement (using "Step Over" or "Step Return")
  • now the first line in the variable view will show the result of the return statement, as "[statement xxx] returned: "

See Eclipse Project Oxygen (4.7) M2 - New and Noteworthy for details.