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I just spent a fair amount of time troubleshooting an issue that required me to look in the ULS logs for the root cause. What tools are recommended for searching/filtering/reading ULS logs?

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We can compare features and vote for favourites based on our experience. If James suggests the ULSViewer (which I also use), I'm likely to give his experience a lot of consideration. – Neil Richards Apr 8 '11 at 21:50
If you are struggling to figure out how to use ULS Viewer, check this post out then,… – Muhammad Raja Feb 3 '14 at 15:42

13 Answers 13

up vote 59 down vote accepted

Realtime? ULSViewer wins hands down:

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Available for download from – Alex Angas Apr 9 '11 at 4:38
No longer available for download there, @Alex...! Does anyone have a replacement link? – Dexter May 20 '14 at 10:57
@Dexter I found a copy here – thm51mb Jun 16 '14 at 20:26

If you are looking to dive deep and investigate all facets of the issue, including the ULS, IIS, event logs and even performance logs, you might want to look into the SharePoint Diagnostics (SPDiag) tool that is part of SharePoint Administration Toolkit, a free tool from Microsoft.

This compiles all of the logs from all servers across the farm lets you get a bird's eye view of what was going on at the given time.

It does take a few steps to set up but really can help troubleshoot an issue.

Documentation can be found on TechNet.

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Does it work with Sharepoint 2010? – Dennis G Apr 9 '11 at 9:06
There is no mention of SP2010 in the "question", but a new version just arrived so i updated Daves answer with new urls – Anders Rask May 4 '11 at 6:34

UlsViewer is a no brainer, you got to have it. But for debugging realtime on several web front end servers I still prefer SPTraceView by Hristo Pavlov.

This unique tool lets you watch ULS errors as they occur from multiple WFE. You install it on all WFE and one is chosen as receiver. This way you can monitor behaviour even though you dont know what WFE your users are having errors with.

It only supports MOSS currently.

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That is a brilliant little tool. – NLV Apr 11 '11 at 9:04

Also have a look at, which allows you to retrieve the information recorded in the ULS log tagged with a specific correlation ID without leaving your site since it's a webpart.

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Stefan Gordon's ULS Viewer

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Check out the original ULSViewer. It wins by far again Stefan Gordon's tool. – Dennis G Apr 9 '11 at 9:04

The Merge-SPLogFile cmdlet is invaluable when working in a multiserver farm environment. It collects the log files from all servers into a single local file. It supports basic filtering to reduce the size of the log file that is collected.

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Try SharePoint Log Reader on codeplex. The ability to filter on category and correlation id is great. It's a WPF application.

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I want to link to my personal favourite: the MIT licensed SharePoint Log Viewer. With it one can see all logs from the entire farm live, filter by all fields, and much more.

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The SharePoint ULS Viewer by Dan Winter, Microsoft.

Here is a list of SharePoint ULS log viewers out there along with comparison of features and the verdict on which one is the best:

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Not being satisfied with any of the SharePoint log viewers out there, I created my own

MasterLogViewer screen shot

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I did my part on this awesome tool. Looks great..… – Muhammedh Aug 24 '15 at 6:14

SharePoint LogViewer - View ULS logs the easy and efficient way

SharePoint LogViewer - View ULS logs the easy and efficient way

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