Dude, where are my logs!?


  • VMkernel, /var/log/vmkernel/. Records activities related to the VMs and ESX hosts. Rotated with a numeric extension. The current log has no extension, and the next newest one has a .1 extension
  • VMkernel Warnings, /var/log/vmkwarning/. Records activities with the VMs. It is a subset of the VMkernel log and uses the same rotation scheme. 
  • VMkernel Summary, /var/log/vmksummary/. Used to determine uptime and availability statistics for ESX hosts; a human-readable summary can be found in /var/log/vmksummary.txt. 
  • ESX Server host agent, /var/log/vmware/hostd.log. Contains information about the agent that manages and configures the ESX host and its VMs. (Search the file date/time stamps to find the log file it is currently outputting to or open hostd.log, which is linked to the current log file.) 
  • ESX Firewall, /var/log/vmware/esxcfg-firewall.log. Logs all firewall rule events. Rotated with a numeric extension. The current log has no extension, and the next newest one has a .1 extension 
  • ESX Boot, /var/log/vmware/esxcfg-boot.log. Logs all ESX boot events. Rotated with a numeric extension. The current log has no extension, and the next newest one has a .1 extension. 
  • ESX Update, /var/log/vmware/esxupdate.log. Logs all updates done through the esxupdate tool. 
  • Service Console, /var/log/messages/. Contains all general log messages used to troubleshoot VMs or an ESX host. 
  • Web Access, /var/log/vmware/webAccess. Records information about web-based access to an ESX host. 
  • High Availability (HA), /var/log/vmware/aam/. Logs information related to the High Availability service. In ESX 3.0.x, these logs were in /opt/LGTOaam512/ instead. 
  • Authentication, /var/log/secure. Contains records of connections that require authentication, such as VMware daemons and actions initiated by the xinetd daemon. 
  • Vpxa, /var/log/vmware/vpx/vpxa.log. Contains information about the agent that communicates with vCenter Server. Search the file date/time stamps to find the log file it is currently outputting to or open vpxa.log file, which is linked to the current log file.

Source: VMware VI3 Implementation and Administration, chapter 10 page 410-411

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About PiroNet

Didier Pironet is an independent blogger and freelancer with +15 years of IT industry experience. Didier is also a former VMware inc. employee where he specialised in Datacenter and Cloud Infrastructure products as well as Infrastructure, Operations and IT Business Management products. Didier is passionate about technologies and he is found to be a creative and a visionary thinker, expressing with passion and excitement, hopefully inspiring and enrolling people to innovation and change.
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