Did You Know: Exchange 2013 SP1 & Command Logging: #MSExchange #iammec

The release of Microsoft Exchange 2013 introduced new feature sets to the core software and sadly removed some. One of the features removed from the product was the ability to see what PowerShell cmdlets were being executed by the Exchange Management Console (EMC). This feature proved to be very useful for administrators to learn PowerShell and to understand how repetitive tasks accomplished in the EMC could be scripted.

The product group listened to user feedback and with the release of SP1 included cmdlet logging in the Exchange Admin Center (EAC). The cmdlet logging functionality will allow you to view up to 500 commands that have been executed from the EAC. The one caveat is that the logging window within the EAC will need to remain open in order to capture the commands.

The command-logging feature requires that you log into the EAC with rights such as the Organization Management privilege and select the drop down menu on the right side as indicated below.

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By selecting the ‘Show Command Logging’ feature a new EAC window will open. This window will need to remain open while working in the EAC in order for these cmdlets to be logged.

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To illustrate how this functionality works, let’s double click on the user Ray Lewis within the EAC and see what the command-logging window captures.

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After double clicking on the user Ray Lewis seven different cmdlets are logged as show below. The following cmdlets are actually executed by the EAC: Get-Mailbox, Get-User, Get-SharingPolicy, GetRoleAssignmentPolicy, Get-RetentionPolicy, Get-AddressBookPolicy and Get-UserPrincipalNamesSuffix.

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Within the command-logging window if we select one of the cmdlets, the actual PowerShell command executed is listed in the bottom pane. This allows for the administrator to copy and paste commands that are relevant for them.

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The command-logging functionality is a welcome addition back into Microsoft Exchange and is certainly a clear indicator that the product group is indeed listening to your feedback!


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