One of the other cool new logs, as it relates to servicing, is the new sessions.xml log. Located in the \Windows\servicing\sessions directory, its a log of all of the different transactions that happen on the machine from a servicing perspective. A small snippet of a log is seen below:
– <Session version=”1.0″ id=”30018265_436341867″ client=”WindowsUpdateAgent” options=”816″ currentPhase=”1″ lastSuccessfulState=”Complete” pendingFollower=”false” retry=”true” Queued=”2009/07/22/10:31:30″ Started=”2009/07/22/10:31:32″ Complete=”2009/07/22/10:31:45″ status=”0x0″>
– <Phase seq=”1″>
<package id=”Package_for_KB972636~31bf3856ad364e35~amd64~~18.104.22.168″ name=”KB972636″ targetState=”Installed” options=”4″ />
– <Phase seq=”1″ rebootRequired=”false” Resolved=”2009/07/22/10:31:38″ Staged=”2009/07/22/10:31:39″ Installed=”2009/07/22/10:31:44″>
<Resolve package=”Package_1_for_KB972636~31bf3856ad364e35~amd64~~22.214.171.124″ update=”972636-1_neutral_LDR” />
<Stage package=”Package_1_for_KB972636~31bf3856ad364e35~amd64~~126.96.36.199″ update=”972636-1_neutral_LDR” />
<Install package=”Package_1_for_KB972636~31bf3856ad364e35~amd64~~188.8.131.52″ update=”972636-1_neutral_LDR” />
Because this is log is in XML, you can collapse all but the transactions that you are interested in seeing. The one thing I like about this log is that it tells you exactly what is happening with each package in a particular fix or update.
For example, in the sample above you can see that KB972636 was installed on this machine recently. It was installed by the WindowsUpdate Agent and it did not require a reboot. This is all really good information to know when trying to troubleshoot an issue with servicing in Win7. Using this, you might be able to tell if a particular package didn’t get staged properly. Or, if a reboot was required and you’re in a reboot loop issue, then you know that you can use the new DISM /revertpendingactions flag and roll yourself back.