SCCM: How to locate the smsts.log file

Description

Often to troubleshoot what is causing an Operating System Deployment to fail we need to investigate the smsts.log file. Below are the locations where the smsts.log file will be depending on the stage you are at.

This article will help you complete the following:

Instructions

  • During OS Deployment
    • Before your hard drive is formatted and partitioned
      • X:\windows\temp\smstslog\
    • After your hard drive is partitioned formatted
      • X:\smstslog\ and then is in C:\_SMSTaskSequence\logs\smstslog\
  • Within Windows
    • Within Windows before the SCCM agent is installed:
      • C:\_SMSTaskSequence\logs\smstslog\
    • Within Windows after the SCCM agent installed:
      • SCCM 2007
        • For x86 Systems
          • C:\windows\system32\ccm\logs\smstslog\
        • For x64 Systems
          • C:\windows\SysWOW64\ccm\logs\smstslog\
      • SCCM 2012
        • C:\windows\ccm\logs\smstslog\
    • When the Task Sequence completes
      • SCCM 2007
        • For x86 Systems
          • C:\windows\system32\ccm\logs\
        • For x64 Systems
          • C:\windows\SysWOW64\ccm\logs\
      • SCCM 2012
        • C:\windows\ccm\logs\

Copy to Network Drive

  1. Press F8 to open CMD window. While the CMD window is open any TS initiated reboot will be halted. As soon as the timer is up and the cmd window is closed the machine will reboot
  2. Mount a network drive from command line:
    • net use N: \\files.umn.edu\dept\share\Logs /USER:AD.UMN.EDU\InternetID
    • type in password when prompted
  3. Copy a log file to the network drive (replace {Drive} with X: or C: as applicable)
    • copy {Drive}:\path\to\log\smsts.log N:\NewNameOf.log

Copy to External Hard Drive or Thumb Drive

  1. Press F8 to open CMD window. While the CMD window is open any TS initiated reboot will be halted. As soon as the timer is up and the cmd window is closed the machine will reboot
  2. Navigate to the location of the smsts.log file.
  3. Copy the log file to the drive (replace {Drive} with the applicable drive letters based on your thumb drive/hard drive)
    • copy smsts.log {Drive}:\NewNameOf.log

Scenarios

  1. Password was accepted but complains that it could not find policy.
    1. Press F8 to open CMD window before it reboots.
    2. Mount network drive and copy the file from: X:\windows\temp\smstslog\
  2. Task sequence failed at some random point and you catch it before it reboots
    1. Press F8 to open CMD window before it reboots.
    2. Mount network drive and copy the file from one of the applicable C: drive locations
  3. Task sequence failed at some random point and you don't catch it before it reboots
    1. Boot from boot media or PXE, before you type in the password press F8.
    2. Mount network drive and copy the file from one of the applicable C: drive locations