We have a huge logfile being written by a vendor's application. Let's assume the vendor won't do anything that we ask. Is there any way of rotating that logfile? We're looking at about 300 MB an hour being written - I'd much rather chunk that into 10 MB pieces, and let anything older than a day or over 1000 files fall off a cliff.

(I know I know, possible duplicate of How do you rotate apache logs on windows without interrupting service?)

Aha - the Chomp log was dead, but searching for "chomp logrotate" brought me to its new site. I'll give it a try tomorrow and reply if I like it. I'd still like to hear about software anyone else is using that works for this.

  • Is periodically restarting your service going to cause problems? Can the application send its output to a program, or a network socket?
    – Zoredache
    Feb 8, 2012 at 23:35
  • It can log to stdout, or to a named file. Possibility to restart - possible, not certain yet.
    – mfinni
    Feb 9, 2012 at 2:24
  • There are hundreds of scripts for log rotations. For example, search Google for "powershell log rotation".
    – Jim B
    Apr 4, 2012 at 19:29
  • That one specifically handles old (stale) files that are no longer being written to, which is a fairly easy case. I was looking for something to handle a single file.
    – mfinni
    Apr 4, 2012 at 20:33
  • Searching that forum for "logrotate" has 0 results.
    – mfinni
    Apr 4, 2012 at 20:34

4 Answers 4


As much as I wince at the suggestion, installing Cygwin is one of the very few options that you have available to you. From there, you can use logrotate.

  • 2
    Not scared of Cygwin if it includes a good solution, although I'm always mindful of not using a cannon to swat a fly.
    – mfinni
    Apr 4, 2012 at 13:26
  • 1
    Sorry, gotta pull back my checkmark. I don't see logrotate in the catalog for the current Cygwin. It might build properly from source, but the MAKEFILE doesn't include anything for CYG or WIN.
    – mfinni
    Apr 4, 2012 at 13:42
  • @mfinni Alas, it's not in the package, although others have used it in Cygwin. =/
    – Wesley
    Apr 4, 2012 at 15:32
  • Sounds good to me
    – mfinni
    Apr 4, 2012 at 17:23
  • 2
    I confirm the ability to move the log file of Cygwin's stock syslog-ng. Feb 20, 2015 at 8:07

I haven't used it yet, but LogRotateWin is a native implementation of logrotate for Windows that looks promising. At least it doesn't require Cygwin.

  • 6
    I have used this on windows 2012 R2. Works perfectly. choco install logrotate then edit c:\program files (x86\LogRotate\Content\logrotate.conf
    – spuder
    May 18, 2016 at 21:24

Have a look at logwot8, which is a packaging of logrotate, a limited shell environment and required cygwin layer components ready to work out of the box (4 MB installer size). You need to customize configuration file according to your reqiurements. It is free for use and distribution under 2-sentence BSD license.

Disclaimer: I am the developer :-)

  • Any perspective for sources? To, say, recompile it for the installed Cygwin rather than haul a separate one around? Feb 20, 2015 at 8:09
  • You can download logrotate sources used in logwot8 here.
    – itefix
    Feb 23, 2015 at 11:38
  • Download link is broken use this Jul 1, 2022 at 11:40
  • Download links are restored.
    – itefix
    Mar 28, 2023 at 11:17

Try LogRotateWin

I've tried LogRotateWin over the last few days.

The projects seems somewhat abandoned and I've found a few bugs in just the little testing I've done. (E.g. some command line parameters that "--help" shows are not actually implemented. E.g. state tracking via logrotate.status statefile does not work for relative paths in logrotate.conf. Instead they ALWAYS get rotated. Not just when their time has come. So you can only use absolute paths.)

But the exe is just 40KB and it does have a few nice features. And I like that fact their mission statement is "The goal is to use the same command line parameters and files as the Linux version." I like it.

Usable example starter-batch and example conf file below.

Logging logrotate's output

Something of a meta-problem: how do you log the activities of logrotate itself? I wrapped the call to logrotate.exe in a batch file. It logs everything to a tempfile, then calls logrotate, then appends everything from the tempfile to a final logfile, then deletes that tempfile. And then that final logfile is then taken care of by logrotate.exe itself in the next run. I then run that starter-batch-file via Windows Task Scheduler.

Mega-dodgy but does the job.



REM Quick and dirty. Wild mixture of Batch and PowerShell. No error checking.

REM Change current directory to where our script is.
cd /D "%~dp0"

set "TEMPOUTPUTFILE=logrotate.temp-log"
set "FINALOUTPUTFILE=logrotate.log"

echo. 1>> %TEMPOUTPUTFILE% 2>&1
powershell -command "& {Write-Output((get-date -format o) + ' Logrotate script START.')}" 1>> %TEMPOUTPUTFILE% 2>&1
logrotate.exe -s logrotate.status logrotate.conf --verbose 1>> %TEMPOUTPUTFILE% 2>&1
powershell -command "& {Write-Output((get-date -format o) + ' Logrotate script END.')}" 1>> %TEMPOUTPUTFILE% 2>&1

REM Somewhat of a hack. I can't have logrotate handle its own logs on
REM Windows it seems.
REM -- I guess file options for shared access are not set in the right way when 
REM you use the ">>" redirect operator. Neither "move", nor "copytruncate" 
REM logrotate directives work.
REM So instead append the contents to the other outputfile. -- Not sure this 
REM this really works. But oh, well. The logrotate logs themselves are not 
REM really that important. So it's not too terrible if we lose a few of them.


C:\winscp\WinSCP.log {
    minsize 1M
    rotate 10

# Unfortunately relative paths don't work.
C:\dev\logrotatetests\logrotate.log {
    rotate 5

Related reading: I've struggled with Apache Tomcat logs on Windows. This is what made me look into logrotatewin. https://stackoverflow.com/questions/19787279/where-to-configure-internal-tomcat7-stdout-stderr-log-files/54423803#54423803

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