How to: Set a Custom Log File Location for ClickOnce Deployment Errors

ClickOnce maintains activation log files for all deployments. These logs document any errors pertaining to installing and initializing a ClickOnce deployment. By default, ClickOnce creates one log file for each deployment activation. It stores these log files in the Temporary Internet Files folder. The log file for a deployment is displayed to the user when an activation failure occurs, and the user clicks Details in the resulting error dialog box.

You can change this behavior for a specific client by using Registry Editor (regedit.exe) to set a custom log file path. In this case, ClickOnce logs activation successes and failures for all deployments in a single file.

Caution noteCaution

If you use Registry Editor incorrectly, you may cause serious problems that may require you to reinstall your operating system. Use Registry Editor at your own risk.


You will need to truncate or delete the log file occasionally to prevent it from growing too large.

The following procedure describes how to set a custom log file location for a single client.

To set a custom log file location

  1. Open Regedit.exe.

  2. Navigate to the node HKCU\Software\Classes\Software\Microsoft\Windows\CurrentVersion\Deployment.

  3. Set the string value LogFilePath to the full path and filename of your preferred custom log location.

    This location must be in a directory to which the user has write access. For example, on Windows Vista, create the following folder structure and set LogFilePath to C:\Users\<username>\Documents\Logs\ClickOnce\installation.log.

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