imageIf you're unsure what ULS logs are or what they're used for, please see my previous post where I cover the basics.  On a recent project, I was adding a new server to a SharePoint 2010 farm.  After the join was completed, I went to go review the ULS logs to ensure all looked well and no serious errors or other issues came up.  To my surprise, it was empty!  It turned out to be a simple fix, but here are some things to check when this happens:

  1. ULS logging is driven by the Windows service "SharePoint 2010 Tracing".  Ensure this service is started, and if it is already running, right-click on it and choose restart.  Then re-check the ULS logs. 
  2. If the above tracing service is started and re-starting doesn't help, it likely is permissions related.  This was the problem in my case.  To fix this, do the following:
    1. In this environment, the tracing service was running as the application pool account.  We need to add that account to the local user group "Performance Log Users". 
    2. Check the membership of this group on a working farm server, and ensure the new farm server has the same group membership. 
    3. Restart the tracing service, and check the ULS logs again for entries.
  3. If you still have trouble, check the other local security groups like WSS_WPG and WSS_ADMIN_WPG groups and ensure the problem server has the same memberships. 

While you shouldn’t have to, it might be necessary to either perform an IISRESET on the problem server, or even reboot to ensure new credentials take affect.