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Enabling trivia logging in VMware vCenter Server (1001584)

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When troubleshooting VMware vCenter Server issues, it may be helpful to enable trivia logging in vCenter Server. These logs contain the most verbiage possible, assisting in understanding underlying issues.
 
For more information, see:

Solution

Caution: Enabling trivia or verbose logging for a longer duration might cause performance degradation on vCenter Server. Only enable trivia or verbose logging for troubleshooting purposes. VMware recommends to revert to default login (info level) immediately after the troubleshooting is complete. VMware does not recommend trivia/verbose logging to be enabled in a production environment. Perform the steps in this article only after consulting VMware technical support.

Enabling trivia level logging is normally done by clicking:
  • Administration > VirtualCenter Management Server Configuration > Logging Options > Trivia for VirtualCenter 2.x
  • Administration > vCenter Server Settings > Logging Options > Trivia for vCenter Server 4.x/5.x
  • vCenter Server > Manage > Settings > General > Logging settings > Trivia for vCenter server 6.0
  • vCenter Server > Configure >  Settings > General > Logging settings > Trivia for vCenter server 6.5

However, if the VMware VirtualCenter Server service does not start, you have to enable trivia logging manually.

Logging levels, location, and other logging features are set in the vpxd.cfg configuration file. The vpxd.cfg is located by default at %ALLUSERSPROFILE%\Application Data\VMware\VMware VirtualCenter\vpxd.cfg.

Notes:
  • In vCenter Server Appliance 5.x and 6.x, the vpxd.cfg file is located at /etc/vmware-vpx/.
  • In Windows Server 2008, the vpxd.cfg configuration file is located at C:\ProgramData\VMware\VMware VirtualCenter\vpxd.cfg.
  • In vCenter Server 6.0, vpxd.cfg file is located at C:\ProgramData\VMware\vCenterServer\cfg\vmware-vpx.
To manually enable trivia logging:

Important: Enabling trivia or verbose logging for a long duration might cause performance degradation on vCenter Server. Only enable trivia or verbose logging for troubleshooting purposes. VMware recommends reverting to default logging (info level) immediately after the troubleshooting is complete. VMware does not recommend trivia/verbose logging to be enabled in a production environment except for troubleshooting. Perform the steps in this article only after consulting VMware technical support.
  1. Back up the original file as detailed logging fills disk space very quickly. Revert any changes after troubleshooting is complete. Do not skip this step.
  2. Using a text editor, add these lines to vpxd.cfg file under the <config> element:

    <log>
    <level>trivia</level>
    </log>


    Notes
    • The vpxd.cfg configuration file entries are case sensitive.
    • For vCenter Server 4.0, the <log> area of the vpxd.cfg file is surrounded by <!-- -->, which effectively turns everything between those lines into comments. These lines need to be removed for any changes to the logging level to be effective.

  3. Restart the VMware VirtualCenter Server service in the Server Manager. Trivia level logging is enabled. You can also specify how many logs are generated and the size of each log. This is useful for keeping enough history to troubleshoot the problem without losing logs via automatic rotation.

    This example instructs logging to be written to C:\vpxlog\ with Trivia logging and a maximum number of log files at 50, with a file size of approximately 10MB each:

    <log>
    <level>trivia</level>
    <maxFileNum>50</maxFileNum>
    <directory>C:\vpxlog\</directory>
    <maxFileSize>10485760</maxFileSize>
    <name>vpxd</name>
    </log>

    Notes:
    • Remember to restart the VMware VirtualCenter Server service in the Server Manager after each change is made.
    • For VMware vCenter Server 4.x, the <name>vpxd</name> can be omitted.
    • If the directory has been modified, the vpxd logs may not be present when generating a diagnostic bundle.

  4. If necessary, further logging can be turned on for other processes:

    1. Under the <config> line, add these lines to enable debug logging level for NFC process:

      <nfc>
      <loglevel>debug</loglevel>
      </nfc>

    2. Add this information to enable database tracing:

      <trace>
      <db>
      <verbose>true</verbose>
      </db>
      </trace>

      Note: Before enabling database tracing, trivia logging must be enabled.

This is an example of all the above features combined:

<config>
<log>
<level>trivia</level>
<maxFileNum>50</maxFileNum>
<directory>C:\vpxlog\</directory>
<maxFileSize>10485760</maxFileSize>
<name>vpxd</name>
</log>
<nfc>
<loglevel>debug</loglevel>
</nfc>
<trace>
<db>
<verbose>true</verbose>
</db>
</trace>
...
</config>

Notes:
  • For VMware vCenter Server 4.x, the <name>vpxd</name> can be omitted.
  • The default output location for logs is:

    • C:\Windows\Temp\vpx\ for VMware VirtualCenter 2.0.x
    • C:\Documents and Settings\All Users\Application Data\VMware\VMware VirtualCenter\Logs\ for VirtualCenter 2.5.x, 3.x, and vCenter Server 4.x, 5.x


Note: In Windows 2008, the vCenter Server log files are located at C:\ProgramData\VMware\VMware VirtualCenter\Logs.

Additional Information

For more information, see Increasing VMware vCenter Server and VMware ESX/ESXi logging levels (1004795)

Update History

04/08/2010 - Added vCenter Server 4.0 to Products. 12/16/2011 - Added If implementing Step 4b, database tracing, trivia logging must be enabled.in notes section. 11/19/2012 - Added location of vpxd.cfg for Windows Server 2008 09/23/2013 - Added vCenter Server 5.5.x to Product Versions.

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