Configure SharePoint Hybrid Auditing in SharePoint 2016 (Preview)

APPLIES TO: no2013 yes2016 no2019 noSharePoint Online


Microsoft has ended support for the SharePoint Hybrid Audiding (Preview). It is no longer available in SharePoint Server 2016 as of the November 2019 Public Update (KB4484143. In addition, it has been disabled in the Office 365 service. Existing data is available in the Unified Audit Log but no new data can be sent from SharePoint Server to the Unified Audit Log, even if the November 2019 Public Update or later has not yet been installed.

Microsoft SharePoint Auditing (Preview)

Microsoft SharePoint Hybrid Auditing is a new hybrid feature for SharePoint Server 2016 to help SharePoint administrators have visibility to user activities in their SharePoint environments. With this feature, SharePoint 2016 on-premise user activity logs can be uploaded to Office 365 and useful reports are generated. Configuration is simple and you can start viewing regularly updated reports in the Microsoft 365 admin center.

SharePoint Hybrid Auditing is currently in Preview mode:

  • It is not recommended or supported to use this feature in production environments.

  • No data completeness or latency SLA is guaranteed.

  • As SharePoint Online is continually changing, may see differences between the audit events on SharePoint Online versus the ones from SharePoint Server (on-premises)


Before you configure the SharePoint Hybrid Auditing feature, ensure you are:

  • A member of the Farm Administrators group

  • A service application administrator (Full Control) for the User Profile Service

  • An Office 365 Global Administrator or a SharePoint Online Administrator

  • Logged into Office 365 and SharePoint Server from a server in your SharePoint Server farm

  • Able to launch the Hybrid Picker as a Farm Administrator with elevated permissions

Elevate the privileges on the on-premises SharePoint farm account. The on-premises SharePoint farm account must be granted elevated privilege on each SharePoint server in the farm before you launch the Hybrid Picker to deploy the on-premises Hybrid Auditing feature. You must:

  • Determine the Windows Service Account representing the SharePoint farm account. This is the Windows Service Account identity for the SharePoint Timer Service

  • Add the SharePoint farm account to the Local Administrators group on each SharePoint server in the farm.

  • Recycle the SharePoint Timer Service on each server in the SharePoint farm´╗┐


This elevated privilege is only required for the duration of the SharePoint Hybrid Auditing feature deployment to allow the SharePoint farm account to create a new EventLog "OfficeDataLoader". The local administrator rights can be removed post provisioning.

The configuration of Hybrid Auditing uses the Hybrid Picker in the SharePoint Online admin center.

Please read Hybrid picker in the SharePoint Online admin center to make sure you have met all the prerequisites before you configure the Hybrid Auditing feature.

Part I: Turn On Audit Log Search Recording

  1. Log in to your SharePoint Server 2016 on-premises as a Farm administrator.

  2. Sign in to as a global or SharePoint admin. (If you see a message that you don't have permission to access the page, you don't have Office 365 administrator permissions in your organization.)


    If you have Office 365 Germany, sign in at If you have Office 365 operated by 21Vianet (China), sign in at Then select the Admin tile to open the admin center.

  3. In the left pane, under Admin centers, select Security & Compliance. (You might need to select Show all to see the list of admin centers.)

  4. In the left pane, select Search & investigation > Audit log search.

  5. If the Turn on auditing button appears, select it.

Part II: Turn On SharePoint Hybrid Auditing

Hybrid auditing uses the Hybrid Picker for configuration. Follow the steps in Hybrid picker in the SharePoint Online admin center.

Part III: Check Audit Log Report

  1. In the Security & Compliance Center, select Search & investigation.

  2. Select Audit log search.

  3. Use this page to search for on-premises auditing events alongside your Office 365 auditing events.


You may need to wait approximately 30 minutes before on-premises auditing events show up in this display.
While SharePoint Hybrid Auditing is in preview mode, it is possible to have some missing auditing events.
Only a subset of the file activities is currently being uploaded from on-premises to Office 365.

To learn more about Office 365 Auditing log search and how to use filtering to get tailored results, see Search the audit log in the Office 365 Security & Compliance Center.

How to turn off SharePoint Hybrid Auditing

The SharePoint Hybrid Auditing feature uses the Microsoft SharePoint Insights service to upload activity logs to Office 365. To discontinue uploading the logs to Office 365 you must stop the Microsoft SharePoint Insights service.

Make sure you have SharePoint OnPrem Farm Administrator privilege and Local Administrator privilege in SharePoint OnPrem VM.

Select one of the two following ways to stop the service in SharePoint 2016.

Stop the Insights Service using PowerShell

  1. Open SharePoint 2016 Management Shell.

  2. Run the following cmdlet:

Add-PSSnapin Microsoft.SharePoint.PowerShell
(Get-SPService "Microsoft SharePoint Insights").Instances | Stop-SPServiceInstance 

Stop the Insights Service in SharePoint Central Administration

  1. On the SharePoint Server 2016 Central Administration website, click System Settings.

  2. On the System Settings page, in the Servers section, click Manage services in this farm.

  3. Select Microsoft SharePoint Insights service, and then in the Action column click Disable Auto Provision

  4. Click OK.

    Disable service in farm

  5. On the System Settings page, in the Servers section, click Manage services on server.

  6. On the Services on Server page, switch server to each custom role server, and click Stop in the Action column.

What actions do I need to take after an In-Place-Upgrade?

Microsoft SharePoint Insights service must be restarted after an in-place-upgrade.

  1. Open "SharePoint 2016 Management Shell".

  2. Run the following:

Add-PSSnapin Microsoft.SharePoint.PowerShell 
Stop-SPService -Identity "Microsoft SharePoint Insights" -IncludeCustomServerRole 
Start-SPService -Identity "Microsoft SharePoint Insights" -IncludeCustomServerRole 

What data/logs will be uploaded to Office 365?

All the audit logs under the folder SPUnifiedAuditEntry are uploaded to Office 365 for generating reports. The location of the folder can be found in SharePoint 2016 Central Administration.

For more information see Search the audit log in the Office 365 Security & Compliance Center

  1. On the SharePoint Server 2016 Central Administration website, click Monitoring under Central Administration.

  2. In the Reporting section, click Configure usage and health data collection.

  3. In the Usage Data Collection Settings, Log file location can be found as follows.

    Usage data collection file location

Search the audit log in the Office 365 Security & Compliance Center

TechNet Forums: Hybrid Auditing