Overview of Azure Stack diagnostic log collection

Applies to: Azure Stack integrated systems

Azure Stack is a large collection of components working together and interacting with each other. All these components generate their own unique logs. This can make diagnosing issues a challenging task, especially for errors coming from multiple, interacting Azure Stack components. In order to address this challenge, we have designed a diagnostic log collection experience.

Prior to 1907, the diagnostic experience included using Test-AzureStack to validate system health and using the privileged endpoint (PEP) to collect logs for troubleshooting.

Beginning with the 1907 release, the Help and Support page adds a simpler experience using Diagnostic log collection. Diagnostic log collection is part of an ongoing investment to improve Azure Stack operator's experience with the troubleshooting process. With these improvements, operators can quickly collect and share diagnostic logs with Microsoft Customer Support Services (CSS). The logs can be stored in a blob container in Azure, where access can be customized as needed.

Diagnostic log collection works in two different ways:

  • Automatic collection: If enabled (recommended), log collection is automatically triggered by specific health alerts and stored in your Azure storage account
  • Collect logs now: This is an on-demand option where you can choose to collect logs from a 1-4 hour sliding window from the last seven days

Screenshot of diagnostic log collection options

Diagnostic log collection has an easy user interface and doesn't require PowerShell. Logs get collected reliably even if infrastructure services are down. If your policy allows sharing diagnostic logs with CSS, Diagnostic log collection is the recommended collection method beginning with the 1907 release. You should only use the PEP to collect logs if Diagnostic log collection in Help and Support is unavailable.

Automatic diagnostic log collection

When a specific health alert is active, automatic diagnostic log collection starts and proactively uploads diagnostic logs from Azure Stack to a storage blob in Azure, significantly reducing the time required to share diagnostic logs with CSS. Diagnostic logs are only collected when an alert is raised.

For more information about automatic log collection, see Configure automatic Azure Stack diagnostic log collection.

On-demand diagnostic log collection

With on-demand collection, diagnostic logs are uploaded from Azure Stack to a storage blob in Azure when an Azure Stack operator manually triggers the collection. CSS will provide shared access signature (SAS) URL to a CSS-owned storage blob. An Azure Stack operator can click Collect logs now and enter the SAS URL. Diagnostic logs will then get uploaded directly to the CSS blob without needing an intermediate share.

For more information about collecting logs on demand, see Collect Azure Stack diagnostic logs now.

Bandwidth considerations

The average size of diagnostic log collection varies based on whether it runs on-demand or automatic. The average size for automatic log collection is around 2 GB, whereas on-demand log collection size depends on how many hours are being collected.

The following table lists considerations for environments with limited or metered connections to Azure.

Network connection Impact
Low-bandwidth/high-latency connection Log upload will take an extended amount of time to complete
Shared connection The upload may also impact other applications/users sharing the network connection
Metered connection There may be an additional charge from your ISP for the additional network usage

For more information, see Best practices for automatic Azure Stack log collection.

See also

Azure Stack log and customer data handling

Using shared access signatures (SAS)

Best practices for automatic Azure Stack log collection