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Four quick tips for troubleshooting Microsoft Hyper-V cluster problems

A Microsoft Hyper-V cluster is one of the best ways to create a stable and resilient infrastructure – but it also comes with a variety of management challenges. Luckily, most of these problems won't pop up often, but when they do, they can be real head-scratchers.

In this four-part series on improving Hyper-V high-availability cluster performance, expert Rob McShinsky outlines several common problems and offers tips and troubleshooting strategies to help you get the most out of your infrastructure.

Updating firmware and drivers
Creating a reliable infrastructure begins with making sure your

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clustered hosts are stable and up to date. Upgrading firmware and drivers can be more complicated in a clustered environment. Updates on one host can affect its ability to communicate with other hosts, shared storage or network hardware. Be sure you know how these changes will affect your environment before rolling them out.

Cleaning up VM configuration files
After an unexpected VM failover, there are a few steps you need to take to make sure you Microsoft Hyper-V cluster continues to run at peak performance. Orphaned configuration files can prevent a Quick Migration and create event log errors. Unsynchronized VM states can also cause failover problems. This tip includes some VM state sync workarounds to help you solve the problem.

Administrative configuration errors
Along with the stability a failover cluster offers, comes increased complexity and management challenges. You can't always blame Microsoft Hyper-V cluster problems on firmware – sometimes you have to take the blame (unless you can pass the buck to someone else in the office). If firmware and drivers check out, consider the possibility that you made a configuration error. Learn about some common mistakes and tips for quickly stabilizing your cluster.

Fixing network problems
It's not just updates and patches that can short circuit your Microsoft Hyper-V cluster. Network issues can also upset an otherwise well-designed Microsoft Hyper-V cluster. When a VM detects a sudden network problem, sometimes it first tries to restart on its current host before failing over to another host, creating duplicate IP address errors. In most cases, shutting down and restarting a VM can solve a network issue – but sometimes you need a heavier hand. Know when it's time to kill an unresponsive cluster node, and how to do it right.

 


This was first published in August 2013

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