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FAQ: Drilling down vSphere issues with vCenter Log Insight

There are many logs of all sizes in your vSphere infrastructure that are useful for troubleshooting purposes. The key is having the right utility to make sense of all the data.

Virtualization administrators who want to resolve issues in complex vSphere environments are often faced with the daunting task of sifting through mountains of information to find that one thread that leads to a resolution.

There is plenty of data generated by logs from VMs, hosts, applications, networking and storage devices. The problem is trying to sort through all the information to determine whether there is a pattern. The vCenter Log Insight product is VMware's log file analysis and management tool for administrators who want to handle their own troubleshooting.

The offering plugged a troubleshooting hole in vCenter Operations Manager, or vCOPs, which monitors the vCenter database but was unable to collect and analyze log files from ESXi hosts.

How much data can vCenter Log Insight handle?

While there is no hard ceiling on the amount of information that can be processed by vCenter Log Insight, the more data that has to be analyzed, the longer it will take for the program to return a result. Optimizing a query to limit the number of events will consequently reduce the amount of time it takes to get a result.

Can vCenter Log Insight troubleshoot a slow data store?

VMware's vCenter Log Insight needs some manual assistance when it comes to uncovering issues with a Network File System, or NFS, data store. While an ESXi host will produce detailed logs from a SCSI data store, an administrator will need to enable enhanced nfsstat3 logging to produce the verbose logs.

How are the findings displayed in vCenter Log Insight?

Once it begins to pull information from system logs, vCenter Log Insight uses a dashboard to show a visual analysis based on the infrastructure logs. Those results can be manipulated to suit your needs, such as adjusting the time constraints, and you then can save that query as its own dashboard if you need to refer to it on a regular basis.

This was last published in August 2014

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