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\->Windows Installer FAQ (the basics)->Logging->Windows Installer Logging Policies

Windows Installer Basics: Windows Installer Logging Policies

MAKEMSI installed the two ".reg" files (in "REGEDIT4" format) shown below to make it easier turn the Windows Installer policies on and off. Simply double click the appropriate file and confirm when windows requests it. You could also use the group policy editor on "Computer ConfigurationAdministrative TemplatesWindows ComponentsWindows InstallerLogging".

Unfortunately it is not possible to determine the filename or where the files are created, "MSI*.LOG" files with random names will be created in the "TEMP" directory (yours or the system account's).

If you keep logging on on production boxes its possible for the numbers of files and disk usage to become quite large so I'd use a tool to manage the files, perhaps a schedule to delete "MSI*.log" files older than a certain age.

If you just wish to log a single activity then the it would be better to turn it on via the MSIEXEC.EXE command line. Note that a Windows Installer bug means that if the install invoker is also requesting logging, the policy requested logging doesn't work, you end up with a near empty file!

However if you want to capture repair and install on demand activity then this is the only way of doing so.

Use (double click) this file to turn logging ON:

REGEDIT4
;----------------------------------------------------------------------------
;
;    MODULE NAME:   MsiLogging-ON.reg
;
;        $Author:   USER "Dennis"  $
;      $Revision:   1.1  $
;          $Date:   08 Sep 2004 17:32:44  $
;       $Logfile:   C:/DBAREIS/Projects.PVCS/Win32/MakeMsi/MsiLogging-ON.reg.pvcs  $
;      COPYRIGHT:   (C)opyright Dennis Bareis, Australia, 2003
;                   All rights reserved.
;
; DESCRIPTION
; ~~~~~~~~~~~
; Turns Window Installer logging on to verbose. "MSI*.LOG" files generated
; in the "TEMP" directory.
;----------------------------------------------------------------------------

[HKEY_LOCAL_MACHINE\SOFTWARE\Policies\Microsoft\Windows\Installer]
    "Logging" = "voicewarmup"
    "Debug"   = dword:00000004

Use (double click) this file to turn logging OFF:

REGEDIT4
;----------------------------------------------------------------------------
;
;    MODULE NAME:   MsiLogging-OFF.reg
;
;        $Author:   USER "Dennis"  $
;      $Revision:   1.1  $
;          $Date:   08 Sep 2004 17:32:44  $
;       $Logfile:   C:/DBAREIS/Projects.PVCS/Win32/MakeMsi/MsiLogging-OFF.reg.pvcs  $
;      COPYRIGHT:   (C)opyright Dennis Bareis, Australia, 2003
;                   All rights reserved.
;
; DESCRIPTION
; ~~~~~~~~~~~
; Turns off Window Installer logging.
;----------------------------------------------------------------------------

[HKEY_LOCAL_MACHINE\SOFTWARE\Policies\Microsoft\Windows\Installer]
    "Logging" = ""
    "Debug"   = dword:0


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Microsoft awarded me an MVP (Most Valuable Professional award) in 2004, 2005, 2006, 2007, 2008 & 2009 for the Windows SDK (Windows Installer) area.