How to get started with SharePoint Farm Reporter?

Before beginning to use SharePoint Farm Reporter to generate reports, you must enable a few settings and configure the application database as outlined below:

  1. SharePoint user permissions - SharePoint Farm Reporter uses the currently logged on user account while running Quick Reports (under interactive mode) and uses 'Run As' account while running Power Reports task (run as a scheduled task or using Run Now option) to generate the corresponding reports.

    SharePoint Farm Reporter requires the above mentioned user account to be:

    a) Member of administrators group in SharePoint Server and Database Server
    [This will be useful if you are generating reports for multiple SharePoint sites residing in different web applications]

    OR

    b) Application pool user account of a web application
    [This will be useful if you are generating reports for a single web application hosting the SharePoint site]

    OR

    c) Farm Administrators group of the SharePoint farm

    Recommendation: It may be of help to use a domain admin account who is member of administrators group in SharePoint and the SQL Servers to generate the SharePoint reports for all web applications seamlessly.

     
  2. Audit Settings - SharePoint Farm Reporter provides Audit Reports across Site Collections and Lists. You have to enable audit settings in Microsoft SharePoint Server 2016 / Microsoft SharePoint Server 2013 / Microsoft SharePoint Server 2010 / MOSS / WSS to view the reports in SharePoint Farm Reporter.

    a) How to configure audit settings in Microsoft SharePoint Server 2013 / 2016?

    Click here to view the detailed information about how to configure audit settings in Microsoft SharePoint Server 2013 / 2016.You can also configure audit settings in Microsoft SharePoint Server 2013 / 2016 using 'Audit Settings Manager' in SharePoint Farm Reporter. Click here to view the detailed information.

    b) How to configure audit settings in Microsoft SharePoint Server 2010?

    Click here to view the detailed information about how to configure audit settings in Microsoft SharePoint Server 2010.You can also configure audit settings in Microsoft SharePoint Server 2010 using 'Audit Settings Manager' in SharePoint Farm Reporter. Click here to view the detailed information.

    c ) How to configure audit settings in Microsoft Office SharePoint Server 2007 (MOSS)?

      Click here to view the detailed information about how to configure audit settings in MOSS. You can also configure audit settings in MOSS using 'Audit Settings Manager' in SharePoint Farm Reporter. Click here to view the detailed information.

    d ) How to configure audit settings in Windows SharePoint Services 3.0 (WSS)?

    WSS does not provide an user interface to configure the audit settings. You can configure audit settings in WSS 3.0 using 'Audit Settings Manager' in SharePoint Farm Reporter. Click here   to view the detailed information.

    Applicable Reports: Audit Checked-In Items, Audit Checked-Out Items, Audit Copied Items, Audit Deleted Items, Audit Deleted Lists, Audit Deleted Sites, Audit  Group Created, Audit Group Deleted, Audit Group Member Changes, Audit Item Actions, Audit Log Trimming, Audit Page Visits, Audit Permission Changes, Audit Permission Level Changes, Audit Profile Changed, Audit Renamed Items, Audit Restored Items, Audit Search, Audit Visited Items

     
  3. Change Log Settings

    How to configure in SharePoint 2013 / 2016: You can set the Change Log Retention period for the corresponding web application in its resource throttling settings [Central Administration > Application Management> Web Application General Settings > Resource Throttling > Change Log] link in SharePoint Central Administration site.

    How to configure in SharePoint 2010: You can set the Change Log Retention period for the corresponding web application in its resource throttling settings [Central Administration > General Settings > Resource Throttling > Change Log] link in SharePoint Central Administration site.

    You can view the last run time of timer job by clicking on the Change Log job corresponding to the destination web application using [Central Administration > Monitoring > Review Job Definitions] link in SharePoint Central Administration site.

    You can view the status, progress, start time and server of the Change Log job using [Central Administration > Monitoring > Timer Job Status] link in SharePoint Central Administration site.

      How to configure in SharePoint 2007: You can set the Change Log Retention period for the corresponding web application [ Central Administration > Application Management> Web Application General Settings > Change Log] link in SharePoint Central Administration site.

    You can view the last run time of timer job by clicking on the Change Log job corresponding to the destination web application using [Central Administration > Operations > Timer Job Definitions] link in SharePoint Central Administration site.

    You can view the status, progress, start time and server of the Change Log job using [Central Administration > Operations > Timer Job Status] link in SharePoint Central Administration site.

    You can view / modify the scheduled run time of the Change log job using the command line SharePoint Administration Tool (stsadm.exe) as shown in the article mentioned below:

    Windows SharePoint Services - Job-change-log-expiration: Stsadm property http://technet.microsoft.com/en-us/library/cc424964.aspx

    Office SharePoint Server - Job-change-log-expiration: Stsadm property http://technet.microsoft.com/en-us/library/cc424949.aspx

     Applicable Reports: Newly Added Items, Last Modified Items, Last Deleted Items, List Activity, Site Activity

     
  4. IIS Log Settings - SharePoint Farm Reporter collects information from IIS log files for the mentioned reports. These reports require IIS logging to be enabled to generate the report.

    How to configure: Enable the "Enable Logging" option in IIS for the web application.

    Click here to view detailed information about how to enable IIS logging.

    Ensure that ODBC and Custom logging enabled

    Configure IIS log files directory path in SharePoint Farm Reporter Settings. For more infomation click here

    Applicable Reports: Page Visits, List Visits, Page Hits, Page Hits - Monthly Usage, Site Visitors, Site Visitors - Monthly Usage, Site Hits Summary, Site Hits Summary - Monthly Usage, List Hits, List Hits - Monthly Usage, Site Usage Summary

     
  5. SQL Server Settings - SharePoint Farm Reporter uses SQL Server database for its data storage to generate SharePoint reports. It requires SQL Server 2005 or SQL Server 2008 or SQL Server 2012 (Enterprise / Standard / Express editions) to connect and create a database. SharePoint Farm Reporter will connect to the specified SQL Server based on the authentication mode and user credential to manage its own application databases. You have to specify the suitable SQL Server settings in SharePoint Farm Reporter to view these reports in SharePoint Farm Reporter.

    SharePoint Farm Reporter uses the USER ACCOUNT based on the SQL authentication mode set in SQL Server settings in SharePoint Farm Reporter to create database and store report data.

    The USER ACCOUNT denotes the currently logged on user account while running Quick Reports (under interactive mode) and denotes the 'Run As' account while running Power Reports task (run as a scheduled task or using Run Now option). You can also use an exclusive SQL user account to create and manage its own application database. Please note that SharePoint Farm Reporter requires the USER ACCOUNT to have sufficient privileges to create, add and delete database in the SQL server.

SharePoint Farm Reporter Features

SharePoint Farm Reporter features are broadly classified as follows:

  1. Quick Reports - Provides a set of SharePoint configuration, permissions, usage and audit reports for web application, site collection, site and list and their items. This task option is ideally suited for quick glance of the current SharePoint information.
     

  2. Custom Reports - Facilitates customizing SharePoint Farm Reporter's Quick Reports output by selecting the desired fields and their field order.
     

  3. Power Reports - The Power Reports uses 'Task' based approach that allows you to select multiple reports with customized (sub-set) fields, define report criteria and schedule export of reports periodically. This feature will enable the user to export multiple reports for several sites / lists in SharePoint at periodic intervals.