Side-by-Side Tracing

Whenever you run into problems with SxS, e.g. because an assembly cannot be loaded because of missing dependencies or similar, using the tracing tool which SxS offers can help you a lot. Here’s how to use it.

Start Tracing

You start tracing by calling the following command:

sxstrace Trace –logfile:sxs.etl

This will keep the tracer running until you actually press enter. If you want to stop it through issuing another command, you should call

sxstrace Trace –logfile:sxs.etl -nostop

This will exit as soon as the tracing session was created.

Stop Tracing

In case you were using the nostop option, you’ll have to stop tracing through the following command.

sxstrace StopTrace

Transforming the Traces

As with most traces, you’ll need to transform the traces from the raw format in the ETL file to a human readable format. You’ll do this with the following command.

sxstrace Parse –logfile:sxs.etl –outfile:sxs.log

In the out file you should then be able to easily figure out if your problem is related to SxS or not.