If PSConfig/PSConfigUI encountered a problem it showed a generic error message and pointed to a PSCDiagnostics log with more details.
The challenge for administrators was to locate the actual problem description inside this huge log file.
This was not very convenient.
The main reason for this behavior is, that the main upgrade work is not done inside the PSConfig executable but inside a timer job created by PSConfig. PSConfig waits for this timerjob to complete and checks inside the registry for a flag whether the timerjob succeeded or failed.
To improve the user experience PSConfig has been updated to retrieve the actual problems the timerjob encountered and shows them to the user directly in the UI.
UI Changes for the GUI version of PSConfig
Below the error message you can also see two icons. The first will open the PCSDiagnostics log in notepad while the second allows to copy the error message (including all formatting) to the clipboard in case you would like to document the issue or send the problem description to a colleague by email.
In addition to showing the exact problem the GUI will also show the command that has to be executed after the problem has been fixed in case you would like to use the command line version. The command displayed in the UI is dynamically generated and will only include those steps which were omitted due to the encountered errors.
Of course you can also just run the GUI version of the Configuration Wizard again – there is no need to switch to the command line version.
UI Changes for the command line version of PSConfig
The improved error reporting for PSConfig has been released with August 2016 CU for SharePoint Server 2016. For SharePoint 2013 it is planned to include the code change in a couple of months in one of the next CUs.
When running the command line version of psconfig after installing a fix keep in mind to use all recommended parameters as per my earlier article.