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Tips: How to enable the debug tracing features in Microsoft Windows Server 2003 and Windows 2008

In the previous article, we had a brief discussion about troubleshooting the Event ID 12302 and the Error: 0x8000FFFF error messages that appear while running the vssadmin list writers. Now, let’s have another discussion about enabling the Volume Shadow Copy service’s debug tracing features in Microsoft Windows 2003 and 2008. Have a look at the following steps to do this.

1.    Click start and type “regedit” in the run box.
2.    Now, click OK to open the registry window.
3.    Then, it is required to navigate to the following registry subkey:
HKEY_LOCAL_MACHINE\SYSTEM\CurrentControlSet\Services\VSS

 


4.    After moving to the above key, right click VSS point on the left pane and point to New to select Key.
5.    Now, it is required to type “debug” and press the enter key.
6.    Then, right click “Tracing”, point to New and then click DWORD Value.
7.    After that, type TraceLevel and press the enter key.
8.    Then, double click TraceLevel and type ffffffff in the Value data box (Type “F” eight times in the Value Data box and then click OK).
Note: Remember that the TraceLevel registry entry is capable of determining the type of debug tracing that will occur. That means that a value of 0 (the default) indicates that no tracing will occur, whereas the value of ffffffff turns on tracing for all events.
9.    Now, in the left pane, right click Tracing and point to New to select DWORD Value.
10.    Type “TraceEnterExit” and then press the enter key.
11.    Once you create “TraceEnterExit”, double click it and type 1in the Value Data box.
12.    Now, click OK.
Note: The TraceEnterExit registry entry determines whether the entry and exit information of the function is output to the trace file and to the debug output stream. Here, the default value 0 states that no entry and exit information of the function is output. The value of 1 indicates that the entry exit information of the function is output.
13.    Now, in the left pane, right click Tracing and point to New to select DWORD Value.
14.    Then, type TraceToFile and press the enter key.
15.    Double-click TraceToFile, type 1 in the Value data box, and then click OK.

Note: Here, the TraceToFile registry entry determines whether the trace information is output to the trace file. The default value 0 states that no trace information is output to the trace file and the value 1 is that the trace information and the output to the trace file. Therefore, if you set the value from 0 to 1, it is also required to set the TraceFile registry entry. You can refer to the following steps to set the TraceFile registry.
a.    First on the left pane, right click Tracing, point to New and select String Value.
b.    Now, type TraceFile and then press the enter key.
c.    Then, double click TraceFile and type c\trace.txt in the Value data box.
d.    Click OK.
e.    Remember that the TraceFile registry entry can’t be stored on the disk where the shadow copy is created.
16.    Now, right click Tracing from the left pane and point to New.
17.    Then, click DWORD Value.
18.    Type TraceToDebugger and then press the enter key.
19.    Now, it is required to double click TraceToDebugger and type 1 in the Value data box and click OK.

Notes: Here, the TraceToDebugger registry entry determines whether the trace information is output to the debug output stream. The default value 0 states that no trace information is output to the debug output stream, whereas the value 1 states that the trace information is output to the debug output stream.
20.    In the left pane, right-click Tracing, point to New, and then click DWORD Value.
21.    Then, type TraceTimeStame and press enter.
22.    After that, as did in the previous steps, double click TraceTimeStamp, type 1 in the Value data box.
23.    Now, click OK.
Note: The TraceTimeStamp registry entry determines if the time stamp information is output to the trace file and to the debug output stream. A value of 0 (the default) indicates that no time stamp information is output. A value of 1 indicates that the time stamp information is the output.
24.    In the left pane, right-click Tracing, point to New, and then click DWORD Value.
25.    Now, on the left pane, it is required to right click Tracing and point to New to select DWORD Value.
26.    It is required to type TraceFileLineInfo and press the enter key.
27.    As performed in the previous steps, double click TraceFileLineInfo and type 1 in the Value data box.
28.    Now, click OK.
Note: Here, the FileLineInfo registry entry determines if the module file name information and the line number information are output to the trace file and to the debug output stream. Now, the default value 0 indicates that no module file name information and no line number information are output. Besides, the value 1 states that the module files name information and the line number information are output.

29.    Right click Tracing from the left pane and point to New.
30.    Now, click DWORD Value.
31.    Then, type TraceForceFlush and press the enter key.
32.    As usual, double click TraceForceFlush and type 1 in the Value data box.
33.    Now, click OK.
Note: The TraceForceFlush registry entry determines if a forced flush occurs after each trace message is written to the trace file. Here, the value 1 indicates that a forced flush occurs. During the forced flush, no trace records will be lost and the performance of the computer will be reduced.

34.    Now, exit the registry window.
35.    That’s it…!

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