How to Delete the Event Viewer Log

By Gryphon Adams

The Windows Event Viewer keeps a record of noteworthy events so you'll have information on security, application or system issues on your computer. It's helpful to become familiar with the Event Viewer as it helps identify problems, such as a device driver that doesn't load, file errors, invalid log-on attempts and file deletions. This is valuable information for administrators and advanced users, especially during troubleshooting. The Event Viewer contains separate logs for applications, security, system and Internet Explorer events. It takes only a couple of minutes to delete all four logs.

Things You'll Need

  • Windows XP Home or Pro

Step 1

Log on to your computer as an administrator.

Step 2

Click "Start." Click "Control Panel."

Step 3

Select "Administrative Tools."

Step 4

Click on "Event Viewer." Select "Application."

Step 5

Click "Action." Select "Clear All Events" on the drop-down menu. This deletes everything in the Application Event Viewer log.

Step 6

Select "Security." Click "Action" and select "Clear All Events."

Step 7

Select "System." Click "Action" and select "Clear All Events."

Step 8

Select "Internet Explorer." Click "Action" and select "Clear All Events."

Tips & Warnings

  • Click "Performance and Maintenance" in the Control Panel to reach "Administrative Tools" if you have the Classic XP menu style. Then click "Computer Management" and select "Event Viewer."
  • For information on an event, visit Microsoft's Event and Errors Message Center. This resource allows you to enter the Event ID to receive an explanation and information on what to do if the event signifies a problem (See Resources).
  • Older versions of the Event Viewer didn't include Internet Explorer.
  • The Event Viewer Action menu gives you the option to save the event log in a file. If you aren't sure about deleting it, copy it to a CD, flash drive or other storage device before you clear the event logs.
  • Keep your Event Viewer logs if you're having any security issues or other computer problems. This information may help resolve the difficulty.