Tuesday, October 5, 2010

How to make your existing VMs Highly Available

While I was waiting for my storage to be ready for clustering, I had to explain some of my colleagues how we should move the existing VMs over to the clustered shared volume.

If you have enabled CSV before, you may remember that you are getting an informational
message that mention that the CSV should ONLY be used for and by Hyper-V. Off
course, that makes sense.

But that does not mean that you can`t browse, or explore the folders.

There are several ways to get your VMs into your Failover Cluster and make them Highly Available.
We are going to take a look at some examples here:

Example 1:
First thing to do, is to shut down your VMs that you want to move over to your Failover Cluster.
When the VMs are shut down, you are able to use the ‘Export’ function in Hyper-V manager. This operation fetch all the .vhd files, configuration, snapshots, and so on, and put it in the destination folder. The folder should be located in C:\ClusterStorage\Volume1. After the export is finished, you simply import the machine into Hyper-V from that location. (Remember to mark the ‘copy the virtual machine (create a new unique ID)’ option before import, since the VM you`re importing already exist in Hyper-V manager).
Now, let’s make this a HA VM.
In Failover Cluster Manager, right click Services and Applications , select ‘Configure
a Service or Application..’ Here, you select ‘Virtual Machine’,  and in next window, you select the VM you just imported. (Remember that the VM should be turned off during this operation).
You have now made your VM Highly Available in Failover Clustering.
After you have checked the HA VM, you can delete the source VM from your DAS.

Example 2:
Shut down your VM, and copy the configuration, and virtual hard disks to a folder on c:\ClusterStorage\Volume1.
Now, let’s make this a HA VM.
In Failover Cluster Manager, right click Services and Applications, select ‘Virtual MachineàNew
Virtual Machine
à and the Host you want to create this on.
Here you have to specify the configuration file, and the vhd-files you want to attach to your vm.
Once this is done, you have made your VM Highly Available in Failover Clustering.

Example 3:
In this example, we have to mention the System Center Virtual Machine Manager 2008 R2.
This is a fantastic tool that helps you to manage your virtual environments, end to end.
Find the VM that is located on your host, right click, and select ‘Migrate’.
You will be prompted to make this VM High Available. Select ‘Yes’, and in the next window, you are able to specify the path for this VM on you clustered shared storage.
This process is similar to Example 1, with the export/import function.
You have now made your VM Highly Available.


John Bars said...

Thank you for this great recipe !

Anonymous said...


Anonymous said...

Thanks this worked great! thanks for posting it!