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Oct 16, 2012

Activity logging and Error logging in ASP.NET

There are lots of error logging providers available such as log4Net, AnLogger, etc. they are easy to use as well, but just to keep it simple, I have written my own. I call it "Activity and Error Logger", it stores the data in XML format, request by request and session by session, you can actually create the user behaviour maps if you properly call the activity log at while performing any major operations. It also takes care of the concurrency, two threads will not overwrite each other. It logs the errors on page in try catch block and also at global level, in Application_Error event in global.asax.

  • Include the Logging.cs class in the App_Code folder of your project
  • Configure the web.config
  • Set the Application_Error in global.asax
  • Create the Logs_App and logs_Error folders in your project and you are done
  • It creates one log file on hourly basis, one for Activities and one for Errors
  • Now to log the activity or error, you just have to call the Logging.LogInfo or Logging. LogException functions in your code wherever required. 


Include the Logging.cs class from the source code attached in this article


 Add the below line in <configSections> if there is no configsections tag in your config, then create one right inside the <configuration> tag:

<section name="ErrorHandling" type="System.Configuration.DictionarySectionHandler"/>
Now add the below section after the config sections:

<!–set true to enable the logging–>
<add key="EnableLogging" value="true"/>
<!– path to log folders, DO create the folder in app directory –>
<add key="ErrorLogFilesDir" value="Logs_Error"/>
<add key="AppLogFilesDir" value="Logs_App"/>


Replace the Application_Error with the below code:

void Application_Error(object sender, EventArgs e)
// Code that runs when an unhandled error occurs
Logging.LogException(Server.GetLastError(), "Global Error");
Default.aspx where the activity log and error log is implemented

using System;
using System.Collections.Generic;
using System.Linq;
using System.Web;
using System.Web.UI;
using System.Web.UI.WebControls;
namespace LoggingSample
public partial class _Default : System.Web.UI.Page
protected void Page_Load(object sender, EventArgs e)
if (!IsPostBack)
public void GetData(int userID)
//{get data from database by passing userid}
////to check if it logs the error throw an argument exception
//throw new ArgumentException("generated error");
//on success Log the activity
Logging.LogInfo("Get successful for userid : " + userID.ToString(), true);
catch (Exception ex)
            //on error log the exception
            Logging.LogException(ex, "Error in data bind");

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