Microsoft KB Archive/929854

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How to enable tracing for a wireless LAN when you start a Windows Vista-based computer

Article ID: 929854

Article Last Modified on 10/26/2007


  • Windows Vista Ultimate
  • Windows Vista Enterprise
  • Windows Vista Business
  • Windows Vista Home Premium
  • Windows Vista Home Basic
  • Windows Vista Starter
  • Windows Vista Ultimate 64-bit Edition
  • Windows Vista Enterprise 64-bit Edition
  • Windows Vista Business 64-bit Edition
  • Windows Vista Home Premium 64-bit Edition
  • Windows Vista Home Basic 64-bit Edition


This article discusses how to enable tracing for a wireless local area network (WLAN) when you start a computer that is running Windows Vista. To enable tracing at the time when a computer starts, you must enable persistent tracing from the command line.


You can enable tracing for a WLAN by using Performance Monitor or by using the netsh command-line tool. By default, the tracing mode in Windows Vista is nonpersistent. That is, after you enable tracing, it remains active until you manually stop it or until you restart the computer.

In certain scenarios, you may have to enable tracing for a WLAN at the time when a computer starts. For example, you may want to do this to troubleshoot and debug issues that occur before a user logs on to the computer. To do this, use the netsh command-line tool to enable tracing and set the mode to the persistent parameter. Persistent tracing means that after you enable tracing, it remains active even after you restart the computer.

To enable persistent tracing for a WLAN in Windows Vista, follow these steps:

  1. Click Start[GRAPHIC: Start button], and then type cmd in the Start Search box.
  2. Right-click cmd in the Programs list, and then click Run as administrator.

    [GRAPHIC: User Account Control permission ] If you are prompted to confirm that you want to continue, click Continue.
  3. Type the following line at the command prompt, and then press ENTER:

    netsh wlan set tra persistent

    Tracing starts immediately and is persistent. When you restart the computer, tracing starts shortly after the WLAN AutoConfig service starts. Existing trace log files are overwritten.

    Note To stop tracing after you enable it, use the following command:

    Netsh wlan set tra no


For more information about the netsh command-line tool and how to use it to configure WLAN settings in Windows Vista, visit the following Microsoft Web site:

Keywords: kbhowto kbinfo kbnetwork kbexpertiseinter KB929854