Defining Keywords Used to Classify Types of Events

An ETW keyword is a 64-bit bitmask used to indicate an event's membership in a set of event categories. Each bit in the keyword corresponds to a category. If an event's keyword has a bit set then the event belongs to the event category corresponding to that bit.

The low 48 bits of the keyword (bitmask 0x0000FFFFFFFFFFFF) are defined by the event provider(the author of the manifest). The top 16 bits of the keyword (bitmask 0xFFFF000000000000) are defined by Microsoft. See winmeta.h or winmeta.xml in the Windows Kits include folder for the definitions of the Microsoft-defined keywords.

Providers use keywords to classify different types of events. For example, you could define keyword bit 0 (keyword value 0x1) as the read category and then apply the read keyword to any event that performs a read operation such as reading from a file or registry. Consumers could then use the keyword bit values to filter for different classifications of events. For example, the consumer could set the event collection session's MatchAnyKeyword property to 0x1 to make the session collect only the events in the read category.

An ETW event collection session can use the keywords (in the same way that it uses level) to limit the events that the ETW service writes to its event tracing log file. A tracing session can enable the provider using two sets of keyword bitmasks: a "MatchAnyKeyword" bitmask where the event is written if any of the event's keyword bits match any of the bits set in this mask, and a "MatchAllKeyword" bitmask where for those events that matched the "MatchAnyKeyword" case, the event is written only if all of the bits in the "MatchAllKeyword" mask exist in the event's keyword bitmask.

For example, if the provider defines an event that specifies a read keyword (bit 0 = 0x1) and a local access keyword (bit 1 = 0x2), and a second event that specifies a read keyword (bit 0 = 0x1) and a remote access keyword (bit 2 = 0x4), you could set the event collection session's "MatchAnyKeyword" bitmask to 0x1 (read) and the "MatchAllKeyword" bitmask to 0x0 (none) to receive all read events, or you could set the "MatchAnyKeyword" bitmask to 0x1 and "MatchAllKeyword" bitmask to 0x3 (read + local) to receive only local reads.

To define a keyword for your provider, use the keyword element. Once a keyword has been defined for the provider, you can assign the keyword to any of the provider's events using the keywords attribute of the event element.

You must specify the keyword's name and mask attributes. The mask must be an integer with one bit set, between bit 0 and bit 47, such as mask="256" or mask="0x100" to set keyword bit 8. Bits 48 through 63 are defined by Microsoft (see winmeta.h or winmeta.xml) and cannot be used in the keyword element.

The symbol and message attributes are optional.

The following example shows how to define a keyword.


            <provider name="Microsoft-Windows-SampleProvider"
                resourceFileName="<path to the exe or dll that contains the metadata resources>"
                messageFileName="<path to the exe or dll that contains the string resources>"

                . . .

                    <keyword name="Read" mask="0x1" symbol="READ_KEYWORD"/>
                    <keyword name="Write" mask="0x2" symbol="WRITE_KEYWORD"/>
                    <keyword name="Local" mask="0x4" symbol="LOCAL_KEYWORD"/>
                    <keyword name="Remote" mask="0x8" symbol="REMOTE_KEYWORD"/>

                . . .


        <resources culture="en-US">
                <string id="Provider.Name" value="Sample Provider"/>