Scots will go to the polls on Thursday in the first local authority elections since the SNP's historic Holyrood landslide last May.
The elections will be the first time since devolution that voting for Scotland's 32 local councils has taken place on a separate day from the parliamentary poll.
In the 2007 elections, which were marred by spoiled ballot papers and problems with the electronic counting, the SNP emerged with most councillors, picking up 363 of the 1222 seats up for grabs.
Meanwhile, Labour won the most first-preference votes and came in a close second, with 348 councillors elected.
The Liberal Democrats were third, with 166 councillors, while 143 Tories were voted into local government.
Nearly 200 independent councillors were also voted in, playing a key role in some authorities, alongside 10 candidates from smaller parties.
With campaigning entering its final hours, each of Scotland's major parties have been making their final push for votes.
Scottish Labour leader Johann Lamont said: "This is game on for the local elections. Hundreds of Labour candidates and thousands of our activists will be out across all parts of Scotland for the final hours, talking to voters, working hard to elect teams of Labour councillors who will put public service and social justice first.
"That is the big difference. While the SNP are putting the referendum first – their leader in Glasgow openly admits she sees this as a stepping stone to independence – Labour councillors will put you first.
"Even in tough times and in the midst of an unemployment crisis, Labour can and will create jobs. Every Labour council in Scotland will implement a local plan to help tackle unemployment, because that is what Labour councils do.
"The burning values of the Labour – fairness, justice, jobs – are values that are as important now as they ever were in the past.
“We are taking nothing for granted and will be out working hard until the polls close."
Meanwhile, new Tory leader Ruth Davidson has set her party the target of overtaking the Lib Dems and become the third party of local government.
However, she admitted that the Conservatives would not turn around their electoral fortunes north of the border overnight but said that the elections can be a "stepping stone on the way to getting us back near where we should be as a party".
The introduction of proportional representation to the 2007 elections means the majority of Scotland's councils are now run by coalitions.
The Liberal Democrats were part of 13 coalition administrations across Scotland, more than any other party.
Leader Willie Rennie said his party's candidates will be "champions for their community".
He added "Every area deserves a councillor who will stick up for them, listen, respond and work with them to get a fair deal."
Glasgow City Council, which has been under Labour control for more than three decades, is a key battleground in the campaign.
Labour has been reduced to a minority administration in the city, with the SNP fighting hard to try to seize control. Nationalist group leader Allison Hunter said winning control there would be a "stepping stone" on the journey to independence.
Derek Mackay, the SNP's local government campaign director, insisted his party had a "strong record and a powerful vision" for councils.
He said: "It is an exciting time for Scotland and during this campaign SNP candidates and their teams have spoken to more people in every community in Scotland than ever before in a local election."
He added that the Nationalists were "determined to secure gains the length and breadth of Scotland".
Mr Mackay said: "Our campaign has been about putting jobs and local services at the heart of our manifesto pledges. And we have made clear SNP councils will be can-do councils, working with the Scottish Government as partners for progress to get more things done."
More About Local elections 2012
- Scotland’s councillors get back to work as the dust settles on elections
- New coalition in Edinburgh sets out promises for next five years
- SNP fury as Labour and Tories strike coalition deal to run Stirling Council
- Voters go to the polls a week late to elect final three councillors
- Councils in Lothians strike deals after days of negotiations
- Councils across Scotland starting to take shape after days of negotiations
- Negotiations across the Lothians in the wake of local government elections