How do I view vCenter 7 logs?

Managing logs is an important part of administering vCenter Server. Viewing vCenter Server logs allows you to monitor operations, troubleshoot issues, and identify security threats. vCenter Server 7 introduces a new simplified log bundle that consolidates logs from multiple modules.

How do I view vCenter 7 logs?

Benefits of Centralized Logging in vCenter 7

vCenter Server 7 provides the following log management benefits:

  • Easier troubleshooting with consolidated logs from all vCenter modules
  • New vCenter Server Log bundle contains logs from key modules
  • Faster log search with vSphere Client filtering
  • Enhanced log analytics with vRealize Log Insight integration

Where to Find vCenter Server Logs

vCenter Server logs are located in directories under /var/log/vmware/ on the vCenter Server appliance. Here are some key vCenter Server 7 log locations:

vCenter Server Log Bundle

  • /var/log/vmware/vcenterserver/logs/vcserver.log.bundle – Centralized log bundle

Individual Log Files

  • /var/log/vmware/vmon/ – vMon logs
  • /var/log/vmware/v postfix/  – Mail logs
  • /var/log/vmware/vapc/ – vCenter services
  • /var/log/vmware/vsphere-ui/  – vSphere UI logs

How to View and Analyze vCenter Server Logs

vCenter Server 7 provides several methods to access and analyze logs:

vSphere Client

  1. Login and navigate to Administration > Deployment > System Logs
  2. Select log bundle or individual logs
  3. Filter log entries by text, timestamps, etc.

vRealize Log Insight

  1. Configure vRealize log insight integration in vSphere Client
  2. Search and analyze logs in custom vRealize Log Insight dashboards

Log File Access

  1. Use SFTP/SCP to download log files from vCenter Server
  2. View raw log files in text editor for advanced analysis

Log Rotation

vCenter Server rotates logs based on file size or hourly time range to prevent logs from consuming excessive disk space.

Tips for Effectively Using vCenter Logs

Here are some tips for working with vCenter Server 7 logs:

  • Search vCenter log bundle first when troubleshooting issues
  • Filter logs by time range to isolate issues
  • Create custom vRealize Log Insight dashboards and alerts
  • Archive old log files externally after analyzing issues
  • Adjust log rotation policies based on usage and available storage

Key Takeaways

  • vCenter Server 7 concentrates key module logs into vCenter Log Bundle for easier troubleshooting
  • Access logs in vSphere Client, vRealize Log Insight, or log files directly
  • Filter and search logs to isolate errors and security events
  • Manage log storage with built-in log rotation
  • Analyze logs proactively to identify performance bottlenecks

Consolidated logging and enhanced analytics makes monitoring vCenter Server 7 easier. Effectively utilizing vCenter logs is critical for performance, troubleshooting and security.

Frequently Asked Questions

  1. Where are vCenter Server logs located?
    vCenter Server logs are located under /var/log/vmware/ on the vCenter Server appliance. The main log bundle path is /var/log/vmware/vcenterserver/logs/vcserver.log.bundle.
  2. What key logs does the vCenter Server log bundle contain?
    The vCenter Server log bundle contains consolidated logs from modules like vMon, vPostfix, vCenter services, the vSphere UI, and more.
  3. How do I view the vCenter Server log bundle?
    Navigate to Administration > Deployment > System Logs in the vSphere Client and select the vcenterserver.log.bundle to view the main vCenter log.
  4. Can I view individual vCenter logs instead of the full bundle?
    Yes, individual logs are located under /var/log/vmware/ on the VCSA. You can view logs for vMon, vPostfix, etc. directly.
  5. How do I filter vCenter Server logs in vSphere Client?
    Use the time range filters and text search on the System Logs page to filter log entries by date, module, and searched keywords.
  6. What is the easiest way to analyze vCenter Server logs?
    Configure vRealize Log Insight integration to forward logs to Log Insight. This provides robust log dashboards, analytics, alerts, and data visualization.
  7. When should I archive old vCenter Server log files?
    Use log rotation policies to prevent logs consuming excessive storage. Archive log files externally once you have analyzed any issues uncovered in the logs.
  8. Where are ESXi host logs located?
    ESXi hosts have a separate logging system. Host syslogs are stored in /var/log/vmkernel.log and hostd.log on ESXi hosts.
  9. Can I adjust log rotation settings for vCenter Server logs?
    Yes, adjust log rotation policies by editing /etc/logrotate.d/logrotate.conf on the vCenter Server appliance.
  10. How long are vCenter Server logs retained by default?
    By default, vCenter rotates logs hourly and keeps the last 100 rotated logs. This equates to retaining logs for up to 7 days.
  11. My log files are consuming too much disk space – what should I do?
    Adjust log rotation policies to reduce retention time and number of rotated logs. Also forward logs to external log management solution and remove aged local log files.
  12. What log level should I set to capture the most detailed logs?
    The INFO log level contains comprehensive logging. WARNING, ERROR, and CRITICAL levels will log high priority issues. DEBUG level captures lower priority events.
  13. What security events are logged by vCenter Server?
    Login events, permissions changes, and SSL certificates changes are some key security events logged. Analyze logs to detect anomalies.
  14. How can I determine which user or IP changed a vCenter configuration?
    Enable logging under Administration > Security & Users. The event log will then capture the source IP and user for configuration changes.
  15. Can I integrate vCenter Server with a third-party SIEM analytics platform?
    Yes, enable syslog export to securely forward logs to a SIEM platform like Splunk or IBM QRadar for compliant log centralization.
  16. How do I troubleshoot vCenter services that fail to start?
    Inspect service startup failures errors in /var/log/vmware/vpx/vpxd.log to troubleshoot the root cause of vCenter services not starting.
  17. Where is the vCenter mail transfer agent (MTA) log located?
    The vPostfix mail transfer agent log files are in /var/log/vmware/v postfix/. Inspect mail.log to troubleshoot mail delivery issues.
  18. My vCenter Server has performance problems – what logs should I check?
    Inspect vpxd.log for overall vCenter operations. For slow inventory performance, enable profiling traces and check pvscsi.log and vmkwarning.log.
  19. Where can I find logs of vSphere Lifecycle Manager install/upgrade operations?
    The VCSA installer log bundle contains logs of all installation, upgrade, migration, and configuration operations. Locate bundles in /var/log/vmware/cis/.
  20. Do vCenter Server logs capture hardware sensor alerts?
    Yes, hardware sensors like disk wear alerts are logged by vCenter Server. The vpxa.log will contain detailed hardware alerts.

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