Troubleshooting: Fax Server

Applies To: Windows Server 2008, Windows Server 2008 R2

This section describes some basic troubleshooting steps for the components that are installed when you install the Fax Server role in Windows Server 2008 and Windows Server 2008 R2. It also contains information about how to enable the Windows software trace preprocessor (WPP) to trace fax operations to aid in troubleshooting.

Additional troubleshooting resources include the following topics in the Windows Server 2008 and Windows Server 2008 R2 Technical Library:

Using general fax troubleshooting steps

Use these steps when troubleshooting fax operations.


Problems with the Fax service might not always be caused by the Fax service itself—use these steps to look for other causes.

  1. Confirm that the modem is on and functioning properly. (The modem manufacturer can provide more information about how to verify that the modem is functioning properly.)

  2. Confirm that Fax Service Manager is configured properly by doing the following:

    1. Click Start, click Administrative Tools, and then click Fax Service Manager.

    2. In Fax Service Manager, in the left pane, right-click Fax, and then click Properties. On the General tab, verify that all of the check boxes are cleared.

  3. Confirm that the fax printer is present and shared properly by doing the following:

    1. Click Start, click Run, and then type: control printers.

    2. In the Printers folder, verify that the Fax printer is present. Then right-click Fax, click Printer properties, and then click the Sharing tab to confirm that the printer is shared. If it is not present or shared, create and/or share the printer. For instructions, see Install and Share a Fax Printer for Network Users (

  4. Confirm that the Fax service is started and using the correct security account by doing the following:

    1. In Fax Service Manager, right-click Fax, and confirm that Start is inactive, which indicates that the Fax service is already started.


The Fax service is designed to stop automatically when all of the following conditions are met:

  • The Fax service is not set to receive faxes.

  • The fax printer is not shared.

  • There is no active connection to the Fax service from another computer.

2.  Click **Start**, click **Administrative Tools**, and then click **Services**. In the **Name** column, right-click **Fax**, click the **Log On** tab, and confirm that the Fax service is using the **Network Service** account.  
  1. Make sure that there are no physical hardware connectivity problems between the fax server and the client computer that is sending the fax.

  2. If applicable, make sure that the client computer sending the fax is in the same domain as the server.

  3. If you are trying to send an attached document in a fax but the operation is failing, make sure that you have the needed application installed to print the attachment. If you do not, you will get an error—Windows Fax needs to print the document prior to submitting the document to be sent.

  4. Check the event log for errors from the Fax service by doing the following:

    1. Click Start, click Administrative Tools, and then click Event Viewer.

    2. In the left pane, double-click Windows Logs, and then click Application.

    3. In the right pane, browse for recent messages that have a source listed of Microsoft Fax.

  5. If you think Windows Fax and Scan may be the source of a problem with sending a fax, you can write a script that uses the Fax COM objects FaxComEx.FaxDocument and FaxComEx.FaxServer to attempt to send the fax. (For more information about the Fax service extended COM application programmer interface (API), see Using the Fax Service Extended COM API (

    The following is a sample script:

    var doc = WScript.CreateObject( "FaxComEx.FaxDocument" );
    doc.Recipients.Add( "<recipient number>", "Test" );
    doc.ScheduleType = 0;
    doc.Subject = "Test Fax";
    doc.Sender.TSID = "Sender";
    doc.Sender.FaxNumber = "727-4554";
    doc.Priority = 1;
    doc.AttachFaxToReceipt = false;
    doc.Body = "<path to document>"; 
    var server = WScript.CreateObject( "FaxComEx.FaxServer" );
    // Use this on machine with local fax driver
    server.Connect( "" );
    doc.ConnectedSubmit( server );

Using WPP software tracing

You can also contact Microsoft Customer Service and Support for help in troubleshooting issues with sending or receiving faxes. As part of this, you may be asked to create a log file (using WPP software tracing) that the support engineer will debug for you. You can use the following procedure to create the needed log file before you contact Microsoft.

For more information about Microsoft support options, see article 295539 in the Microsoft Knowledge Base ( For more information, see WPP Software Tracing (


T.30 logging, which is used in earlier versions of Windows, is not included in Windows Server 2008 or Windows Server 2008 R2.

Before you begin, you should install TraceView.exe. This tool ships as part of the Windows Driver Kit (WDK). For more information, see TraceView ( For information about how to get access to and download the WDK, see How to Get the WDK (

To create a log file for a fax server using WPP software tracing

  1. Right-click TraceView.exe and then click Run as administrator. (The default installation location for TraceView.exe is <SystemDrive>\WinDDK\<BuildNumber>\tools\tracing\<OSProcessorArchitecture>\TraceView.exe.)

  2. Click File, click Create New Log Session, and then click Add Provider.

  3. Select Manually Entered Control GUID and then in the text box, type the GUID: 8e0e93fb-76ad-42ee-8770-b9dfea596f65. Click OK.

  4. Do one of the following:

    • In Format Information Source Select, click Cancel and then click Next.

    • If you have access to the debug symbols already, do the following:

      1. In Format Information Source Select, select Set TMF Search Path and then click OK.

      2. In Select Directory, browse to or type the path to the debug symbols for Windows Fax binary files, and then click Next.

  5. On the Log Session Options page, select the Log Trace Event Data To File check box, and then click Finish.

  6. Follow the steps needed to reproduce the problem that you want to debug.

  7. TraceView.exe will display the needed traces. Do one of the following to capture the traces:

    • Press the CTRL key while using your mouse to select the traces that you need, right-click the selected traces, and then click Copy. Paste the traces into a text file or spreadsheet, and then review the traces for errors.

    • Look for a log session file in the folder where TraceView.exe is. The file should have the extension .etl.

  8. E-mail the file to your support engineer.