App-V 4.6 Sequencing: What are the logs really for?
For sequencing in App-V 5, the new ETW model simplifies the process and moves App-V to the Windows standards for event tracing. Even better, the sequencer not only has two logs to worry about (operational and administrative) but a simple process can occur to enable more verbose debug logging.
In App-V 4.6, the process was not that simple. While the logs did not write to the Event Viewer-able logs, all but one are text-based which makes for easy manipulation with your favorite log parser. I prefer Trace32 of course! These log files are stored in the logs subdirectory of the Sequencer installation directory which defaults to C:\Program Files\ Program Files\Microsoft Application Virtualization Sequencer\Logs. Certain logs pertain to specific functions so the relevancy will vary on whatever your troubleshooting scenario might be.
SFT-Seq-log.txt: The majority of sequencer logging occurs here (Uploads to virtual environment, downloads from the virtual environment, service starts and service stops, etc.)
SFTrbt.txt: This is the sequencer reboot log file. When the 4.6 sequencer simulates reboots, the elements that are processed will be tracked in this log file.
SFTCallBack.txt: This is a more simple logs that allows you to reconsile process starts and stops during sequencing. It works great in conjunction with a process monitor log.
Filter.log: Outside of working with Microsoft Support, this log is not very useful as it is obfuscated. It tracks file activity but must be decoded with an internal utility. You can enable further tracking into a file called files.txt which will contain a log of all files created in the VFS. This can be enabled (although it will increase sequencing time) by enabling the following value in the registry:
- Key: HKEY_LOCAL_MACHINE\Software\Microsoft\SoftGrid\4.5\Sequencer\Configuration\
- Value: FileManifest
- Data Type: REG_DWORD
- Data: 1
SFTrpc.txt: This is the log file created by the monitoring element SFTRPC.EXE and in addition to also capturing process startup and shutdowb, will also contain verbose diagnostic information about each monitored shortcut.
In addition to the sequencer logs, you can also leverage process monitor (http://technet.microsoft.com/en-us/sysinternals/bb896645.aspx) and verbose MSI logging (http://madvirtualizer.wordpress.com/2014/03/17/enabling-advanced-windows-installer-logging/) if you encounter errors within the application during sequencing.