Home > Work related > A look at Windows Hyper-V as a Cluster

A look at Windows Hyper-V as a Cluster


 

I decided it was time to look at the free windows version of Virtual Machine software that comes with Windows Server 2008 R2 called Hyper-V. The platform has a little larger of a footprint compared to to others but the administration tools should make it easier to manage from our new Windows 7 platform. This proved to be challenging but now that it is setup I am quite happy with the results.

Through the Hyper-V Configuration panel (blue window), I did the following:

  1. Changed the default Host Name (I changed my hostname several times*)
  2. Restarted server to apply the computer name settings
  3. Changed the IP to static addresses
  4. Enabled RDP support
  5. Allow MMC Remote management
  6. Enable Windows Powershell
  7. Restarted server to apply changes
  8. Configured Remote Management to allow WinRM and relax Firewall settings
  9. Enabled an extra firewall setting (through the command Netsh advfirewall firewall set rule group=“Remote Volume management” new enable=yes) on my administrative machine for managing the disks through a remote MMC snap-in
  10. Joined the domain (Windows 2008 R2 Domain created on a separate server on the network)
  11. Rebooted without changing the machine name again.
  12. Added the domain Administrator to the local Administrators group (option 4 of the Hyper-V Configuration tool).

Next we are going to use iscsicpl (the control panel added to R2) in order to add our iSCSI target volumes to our first hyper-v cluster server. When we type this command into the hyper-v machine we are asked if we want the Microsoft iSCSI service to start automatically so please say yes.

(Now we used a free version of DSS to configure our third PC as a storage server running iSCSI RAID 5. There are a number of software/hardware options and a multitude of configuration methods but we chose this because it supported multipathing – it should also be noted that we previously connected and formatted both of these disks as NTFS)

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Enter the IP address of our target and click ‘QuickConnect’ Once you are in the quick connect window click on each of the disks and click connect. They should read Connected before we proceed. Press ‘Done’ and then press Ok to close the applet.

You should now be able to connect to the Disk Management of that server from your management system and configure the drive letters. I changed my quorum drive (the Witness disk) to use letter Q and the main storage cluster volume to use S.

I then ran the command "start /w ocsetup MultipathIo" to setup multipathing and rebooted.

I then repeated the process (all except step 9) on the second virtual server and so on (if you had more than 2 machines considered for your cluster).

After I finished the setup on the second server I connected back to the first server with Server Manager and verified that Multipath was installed while I waited for the second machine to restart.

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Once I verified that the second machine had reconnected to the same drive letters and that it too had Multipathing enabled we could turn on the Failover Clustering Feature (option 11). You should also see that feature listed in the server manager when you connect to both.

Next step was to connect to each of the servers and enable an External (Virtual) Network for the VMs to use. I just used the default settings and enabled the same NIC that the management interface was using.

Next step was to run the Failover Cluster Manager and Validate our two servers for a cluster. (* We found that this method would not allow us to connect and I suspected that it was a name resolution issue that is caused when the machine name is changed without joining a domain. I went back to the first step above and removed the computer from the domain and rebooted. Then I joined the domain AND changed the name of the computer before I restarted to fix it).

After validating that the two servers could be used in a cluster (*) we created the cluster.

(* When using only one set of network cards I found that there was a warning stating that the network was a single point of failure but I choose to disregard that)

Once we have the cluster created we can turn on the Cluster Storage Volumes and add the CSV that we created earlier.

Now Click on Services and Applications in the Failover Cluster Manager and look on the right side for an option to create a Virtual Machine and make sure to use the ‘Store the Virtual Machine in a different location’ check box and enter ‘C:\ClusterStorage\Volume1’ as your path to store the Virtual Machine. The configuration will automatically use the Witness Disk and the vhd will reside on the Clustered Volume.

Categories: Work related
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  1. September 19, 2012 at 10:15 am

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