Wednesday, June 07, 2006

Logging information into Windows Event Viewer

Have you ever wondered whether you could log information into Windows Event Log? If yes, read on :)

As you know, there are several methods to log information about your applications. If at all you want to create a specialized logging mechanism, consider using xp_logevent.

xp_logevent is a SQL Server extended stored procedure that is used to log customized events to the Windows NT system log. This information can then be examined through the NT Event Viewer.


xp_logevent error_number, error_message, [severity]


error_number -- can be any number greater than 50,000 and less than or equal to 1073741823

error_message -- can be any user defined message with 255 characters at the maximum. If the error message is > 255 characters it won't throw an error, instead only the first 255 characters would be displayed in the Event Viewer.

Severity -- can hold, one of the following 3 values: ERROR, WARNING & INFORMATION. Please note that severity is an optional value and the default value for it is INFORMATION

Code Snippet:

Below is a sample logging procedure that sends a dummy / test error message to Windows Event Viewer.

Create Procedure LogToEventViewer

Declare @Message varchar(1000)
Select @Message = 'Sample message: From SQL Server'

Exec master..xp_logevent 50101, @Message, WARNING

FYI, I have tried xp_logevent in SQL 6.5 and above.


You might also want to check;EN-US;290085


After executing the above stored procedure open the Event Viewer. In the Windows 2000 systems it would be here, Start >> Settings >> Control Panel >> Administrative Tools >> Event Viewer. Inside Event Viewer we could see the warning message which were created using our stored procedure inside "Application Log" tab.


Jaya said...

Hi Vadivel
thanks for the good info regarding logging.
suppose i am writing some useful information (like the user name of the application) to the log and end of the day i want to query the application log their any extended procedure available ?

CHENTHIL said...

You can also use LogEvent method in Shell Object ("WScript.Shell"). It is simple in the sense you don't need any SQL servers installed.

Vadivel said...

Jaya, to my knowledge there isn't any extended sp for that purpose. May be, I am not aware of that as of now :)

Chenthil, yes there are various methods of logging info into Event viewer. I have just mentioned the way to do it via / using SQL Server :)