How to Find Windows 10 Update Logs and Read using PowerShell

With the release of Windows 10, Microsoft has changed the way, this operating system logs being created and then how to view them. Till now, we have been viewing Windows Logs of previous versions operating system in Windowsupdates.log file. However, this file is still present in Windows 10, but when you open it, it’ll not show you logs, rather you’ll find following information in it:

How to Find Windows 10 Update Logs and Read using PowerShelll

So, while Microsoft has done so many changes in Windows 10, they totally transformed the way, we may peak into Windows Update logs. So, in order to view WindowsUpdate.log in Windows 10, there are two ways:

  1. Decoding Windows Update ETL files
  2. Using Windows PowerShell cmdlet to re-create the WinodwsUpdate.log, like it has been in previous versions of Windows

For Windows 10, using PowerShell is the best way to view Windows Logs, but is less reliable. Hence, we have prioritized the solutions below:

Solution 1 (Takes more time than Solution 2)

Using this method, you can directly decode Winodws Update .etl files in human readable form for getting the windows update information during various troubleshootings. So, here’s the steps to do it:

  • First you need to download public symbols from here and copy it to following path:

  • You can open above location by copying this path to “Run” dialog box and enter.

Windows 10 Kit & Tools

Installing Windows 10 Kit

  • Now locate “Tracefmt.exe” by using Windows Search and copy it to following path:

Where %systemdrive% is your operating system drive e.g. C:\. If WULogs folder is not available, create one.

  • After copying “Tracefmt.exe“, Right click on Start menu and select “Command Prompt (Admin)“.
  • Run following commands in “Command Prompt“.

Where <Winodw Update Logs> syntax would be replaced by Windows Update .etl files name. You can list all files name in one command like below:

This would generate a combined WinodwsUpdate.log file for you.

Solution 2

  • Open start menu and type “powershell” and on result of “PowerShell ISE“, right click and select “Run as Administrator“.

Windows 10 PowerShell ISE

  • PowerShell can take a while to open if running first time. Run following command in PowerShell:

  • This process can take a while to complete, so be patient. Once it’s complete, you’ll find a similar screen as below.

Powershell Windows 10 update

Open your desktop, you’ll find a new file named WindowsUpdate.log.

Also on Trouble Fixers

Now, the file WindowsUpdate.log generated using command Get-WindowsUpdate.log is a static file and we need to get it into terms of auto-updating, so that you don’t have to update the whole procedure of running the PowerShell again and again. To accomplish that, you can create a script using PowerShell which shall auto-update the log file with recent activities, so that you may could troubleshoot things in real-time if doing any.

For creating a script, commands in PowerShell could be something similar as below:

For more details visit, Get-WindowsUpdateLog method, which shall help you in merging Windows udpate .etl files into a sinlge WindowsUpdate.log file.


  1. I tried way two but i get this error:

    Get-Process : Es wurde kein Positionsparameter gefunden, der das Argument “Get-WindowsUpdateLog” akzeptiert.
    In Zeile:1 Zeichen:1
    + PS C:\WINDOWS\system32> Get-WindowsUpdateLog
    + ~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~
    + CategoryInfo : InvalidArgument: (:) [Get-Process], ParameterBindingException
    + FullyQualifiedErrorId : PositionalParameterNotFound,Microsoft.PowerShell.Commands.GetProcessCommand


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