Using the SMS Tracer Utility


Microsoft Systems Management Server allows you to trace the actions performed by the SMS services. When tracing is enabled, each service makes log entries for actions that it performs or errors that it receives in a log file. The log files are ASCII text and can be viewed with a text editor. However, SMS includes a Tracer utility that parses these log files and presents them in a clearer, more user-friendly manner than plain text viewing. Tracer also allows interactive viewing of the SMS log files as the services are writing to them.

More Information

There are currently two versions of this utility, TRACER.EXE and SMSTRACE.EXE

TRACER.EXE is a command line console-mode utility that reads changes made to a text file in real time. This file is located in the PSSTOOL\<arch> directory on the SMS 1.0 and 1.1 CD-ROM. For SMS 1.2 it is located in the SUPPORT\DEBUG\<arch> directory on the CD-ROM. SMSTRACE.EXE is a graphical user interface (GUI) multiple document interface (MDI) version and is included in the SITE.SRV\<arch>.BIN directory.

SMSTRACE.EXE allows you to customize the display by selecting options such as columns, filtering, and ignore new lines. You can also Cut and Paste and Print from SMSTRACE. SMSTRACE.EXE also allows viewing of several log files simultaneously.

To install SMSTRACE as an icon in the SMS group:

  1. Open the Systems Management Server group windows.
  2. From the Program Manager File menu, select New.
  3. Choose New Program Item. For the Command Line, enter:
    For the working directory, enter:
The SMS services log files are all located in the SMS\LOGS directory except for the Site Configuration Manager log file SCMAN.LOG and the Bootstrap log file BOOT.LOG.

The following is a list of the log files and the names of the component that writes to them: For more information on tracing Systems Management Server services, please refer to the Systems Management Server 1.0 or 1.1 "System Guide," Appendix J. If you are running Systems Management Server 1.2, please refer to the Systems Management Server 1.2 Resource Kit.

SMSTrace is also available in the SMS 2003 Toolkit available here:


Article ID: 125452 - Last Review: Jan 7, 2017 - Revision: 1