Save Trace Results to a File

Applies to: SQL Server

You can save trace results to a file. A trace file is a file where the trace results are written. A trace file can be located either in a local directory (such as C:\foldername\filename.trc) or a network directory (such as \\computername\sharename\filename.trc).

You can use the trace files to do the following:

  • Replay traces

  • Audit SQL Server

  • Conduct performance analysis

  • Correlate trace events with performance counters to enhance problem detection

  • Perform Database Engine Tuning Advisor analysis

  • Carry out query optimization

SQL Server saves trace results to a file when a path and file name are specified for the @tracefile argument of the stored procedure sp_trace_create.


If a path is specified to the sp_trace_create stored procedure for saving the trace file, the directory must be accessible to the server. Also be aware that if a local directory is specified to sp_trace_create, it is a local directory on the server computer.

If SQL Server Profiler is used, it allows you to save trace results to a file or to a table. Saving trace results to a table allows the same access as saving the trace to a file plus you can query the table to search for specific events.

For more information about saving trace results, see Save Trace Results to a Table (SQL Server Profiler) and Save Trace Results to a File (SQL Server Profiler).

See Also

sp_trace_create (Transact-SQL)
Create a Trace (Transact-SQL)
Create a Trace (SQL Server Profiler)