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System Recovery

Where does Windows 2000 put the boot log file? by jrbarnett
Posted: 18 Oct 03 (Edited 25 Nov 03)

Windows 2000 offers the facility to create a logged boot in order to help diagnose problems relating to system startup. It is not clear from this however where the log is stored so it can be analysed at a later date.


The log is kept in the %SystemRoot% directory (normally C:\WINNT) in a file called NTBTLOG.TXT.

This file is plain text that can be read in Notepad, Word or similar.

The first line of the file details the computer's service pack, and the date (in US format) and time it was created. For example (this is actually taken from one on my machine):

Service Pack 3 8 25 2003 19:36:46.500

The remainder of the file contains the details of the drivers/files loaded and their status.

To activate the boot logging feature, carry out the following steps:
1. While the white progress bar is going across the screen at system startup, press F8 to enter the Troubleshooting and Advanced Startup options.
2. Use the down arrow keys to move the highlight bar to "Enable Boot Logging"
3. Press ENTER on the item to select it and continue booting.

Please note that the new log file will be appended to whatever is currently in the file, so if you have an existing file I would rename it, move it out of the way or delete it first to avoid getting confused between older systems.

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