This post provides tools, techniques, and links to other resources that can assist you in troubleshooting issues you might encounter with SharePoint Server 2010.

Universal Logging System (ULS) logs

One of the most helpful tools for troubleshooting problems with SharePoint Server 2010 is the Universal Logging System (ULS) logs. You can use data from the ULS logs in SharePoint Server 2010 to troubleshoot problems in the farm. The ULS log can collect data at varying levels depending upon the logging settings. You can use Windows PowerShell to filter the data, display it in various ways, and output the data to a data grid with which you can filter, sort, group, and export data to Excel Services. For more information, see View diagnostic logs (SharePoint Server 2010).

For additional information about how to use Windows PowerShell to filter, display, and output ULS log data, and how to use the Correlation ID displayed in an error message to help troubleshoot the error, see Microsoft Press: Using Windows PowerShell to Perform and Automate Farm Administrative Tasks.

You can also use the ULS Viewer tool to open a ULS log file and display its contents in a user friendly format. To download the ULS Viewer tool and its user documentation from MSDN, go to ULS Viewer.

SharePoint Health Analyzer

SharePoint Server 2010 includes a new tool named SharePoint Health Analyzer  that enables you to diagnose and resolve configuration, performance, and usage problems. SharePoint Health Analyzer runs predefined health rules against servers in the farm. A health rule runs a test and returns an alert that tells you the outcome of the test. You can use Central Administration to view alerts and resolve problems. For more information, see Viewing and resolving SharePoint Health Analyzer alerts (SharePoint Server 2010) and SharePoint Health Analyzer rules reference (SharePoint Server 2010).

Configure verbose-level logging

You can configure diagnostic logging to record verbose-level events. This means that the system will log every action that SharePoint Server 2010 takes. You can use verbose-level logging to record a greater level of detail when you are making critical changes and then re-configure logging to record only higher-level events after you make the change. For more information about how to configure verbose-level logging, see Configure diagnostic logging (SharePoint Server 2010).

Use verbose-level logging sparingly because it can quickly use drive space and adversely affect drive and server performance. For more information about how to troubleshoot a trace log that has reached its maximum size, see ULS trace log reaching maximum size - Event 8094 (SharePoint 2010 Products).

Check features and services

If you get errors when using any SharePoint feature, it is often a good first step to ensure that a necessary SharePoint feature is activated and any related services are running, if only to rule out the feature or service as a cause of the problem. For more information, download the “Understanding and troubleshooting SharePoint 2010 technology features and services” white paper .

Additional resources

For TechNet documentation, see Troubleshooting (SharePoint Sever 2010) (http://technet.microsoft.com/en-us/library/gg609831.aspx)

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