Windows Server Troubleshooting Documentation

Applies To: Windows Server 2008

The troubleshooting content available with the Windows Server® 2008 operating system represents a new type of online documentation. Derived from knowledge captured when modeling the health of Windows Server 2008 server roles, the documentation provides prescriptive steps that can be taken to recover from error conditions reported by an event. Because you can access the documentation from Event Viewer, you can find out, from just one place, what an event means, how to fix the error condition reported by the event, and how to verify that the issue is resolved.

What does the troubleshooting documentation do?

The documentation offers prescriptive guidance so that you can:

  • Resolve an error condition reported by a specific event.

  • Determine if an error condition reported by an event is no longer present.

  • Diagnose the underlying cause of an event when the source of the error condition is unclear.

The documentation related to these troubleshooting activities complements the information available with the Windows Server events logged on your computer.

This documentation also offers a view of server roles in Windows Server 2008, from the manageability perspective.

Who will be interested in this feature?

  • IT professionals who are troubleshooting error conditions on computers running Windows Server 2008.

  • IT professionals who want to understand server roles in Windows Server 2008 from a manageability perspective.

What new functionality is provided?

Event Viewer in Windows Server 2008 includes an Event Log Online Help link that, when clicked, directs you to this troubleshooting documentation.

If the computer is connected to the Internet, a page will open in your Web browser, with troubleshooting information that applies to the selected event.

Online browsing of server role troubleshooting knowledge

The troubleshooting documentation is part of the online documentation for Windows Server 2008. To browse this documentation, see

Organized by server roles, the information is divided according to the logical areas of interest to an administrator or operator when monitoring and troubleshooting the server role. Within each logical area of manageability, you will find reference and troubleshooting information relevant to each event logged by services or applications that are part of the server role.

Are there any special considerations?

For the Event Log Online Help link in Event Viewer to directly connect you to the online troubleshooting documentation for an event, the computer running Windows Server 2008 must be connected to the Internet.

If the computer you are troubleshooting is not connected to the Internet, you can access the documentation from a computer running Windows Server 2008 or Windows Vista® that is connected to the Internet. You can do one of the following:

  • Export the event log you are reviewing and open it in the other computer.

  • Use Event Viewer on the other computer to connect to the computer you are troubleshooting. You can do this by using the Connect to Another Computer option in the Event Viewer snap-in.

Troubleshooting documentation and the Dynamic Systems Initiative

Knowledge-driven management is a key component of the Microsoft Dynamic Systems Initiative (DSI). To make knowledge-driven management possible, the desired health and configuration states of systems must be captured in models. When these models are created, troubleshooting knowledge is also captured. The troubleshooting documentation available with Windows Server 2008 is one of the first steps toward knowledge-driven management and truly dynamic systems.

For more information, see Dynamic Systems Initiative (