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I am analyzing the SharePoint 2010 traffic for my site , I got confuses when I analyzed the IIS logs and SharePoint Web Analytics results, because the result is quite different, Like: Top Pages of SharePoint's web Analytics is 228 (for last 6 months), while on the other side IIS log shows 47,442 (for last 6 months).

Can any body guide which one (Web Analytics/IIS logs) should I go for, because after that we have to make a major decision.

Note: Our SharePoint site is hosted on some other location so I can't access the ULS

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IIS logs are particularly useful when you need to do a capacity review of your WFEs. Concurrent Users, Workload Distribution and Peak Load Metrics are the primary benefits of reading IIS logs through LogParser.

Web Analytics of SharePoint is helpful tracing slow queries, search metrics, page views and total users.

Said so, the difference lies in what we analyze manually out of IIS Logs and how SharePoint Web Analytics analyze the staging database.I'd personally prefer using LogParser / SQL to find top pages of last 6 months by merging IIS logs of SharePoint web applications into a single warehouse and calculate farm wide top pages.

Web Analytics of SharePoint is typically limited to individual web applications and does not provide farm wide aggregated stats. Thats where IIS Log parsing scores. Hope this should give you some insight on the above.

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  • Thanks Arko, this a corollary question that why SharePoint web analytic result is different from WSS_Logging result? Commented Aug 15, 2013 at 5:00
  • Please see this complete comments!Thanks Arko, this a corollary question that why SharePoint web analytic result is different from WSS_Logging result? Logically it should be same for e.g. SharePoint store its request logging in WSS_Logging--->RequestUsage table,but when I query for some web application(SharePoint Site) it shows different result even some record was missing as web analytic shows? My understanding is SharePoint Web Analytic stores the request info in some list and then populate it into the table, is my understanding correct?? Commented Aug 15, 2013 at 5:09
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SharePoint's web analytics reports aren't populated by data from the IIS logs. This is kinda funny, since web analytics reports frequently come from analysis of web server logs.

IIS logs contain a history of the information requested by clients. This means that if there's no traffic on your SP website, the IIS logs will be mostly empty. But it also means that a full picture of website traffic is contained within the logs.

To answer your question about which to choose (SP web analytics or IIS Logs), it depends on what you plan to do with the reports once you get them.

If you just need basic evidence that the site is used, the SP web analytics reports are fine.

If you want more advanced reporting abilities like tracking document access by username, or direct file downloads, or site errors, then IIS logs are the better choice.

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