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Overview

In North52 a trace log (sometimes called trace file) is the output of a Formula execution.  In this series of articles we will breakdown the trace logs providing a clear understanding of:
  • What is inside a trace log
  • Where to find North52 trace logs
  • How to interpret trace logs
  • Common errors to watch out for
  • We will touch on relevant Microsoft platform limitations and rules (depth, timeouts, execution context, etc.)
  • Differences between client side and server tracing

Purpose of Trace Logs

North52 tracing has 2 primary purposes:
  1. Information reporting (What the formula did and why)
  2. Error reporting (What the formula did and what went wrong)

Information in a Trace Log

The trace log contains as much relevant information as we can add to it. The items found inside a trace log include:

Information about the plugin context

  • Stage (validation, pre-op, post-op etc.)
  • Message (update, create, delete, etc.)
  • Business Unit it is executing in
  • CreatedOn date and time
  • Primary entity it is executing against

Information about the primary entity

  • Any values that have changed in the transaction

Information about the formulas that are executing

  • List of shortcodes
  • Start and stop for each formula executing
  • Formula description (it's business rules)
  • Output of individual function used in the formula

Information about the Formula itself

  • Source properties
  • Description
  • Shortcode
  • Pipeline event
  • Pipeline stage etc


With this information you can determine how the logic in the formula has executed and why it chose the paths it did. In later articles we will examine this data in more detail.  

Note: Each trace log belongs to a specific Formula, but if multiple Formulas are executing then you can see those Formulas and their outputs in each trace log. This is helpful when you are trying to troubleshoot multiple executing Formulas in more complex logic.