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Proper procedure to enter maintenance mode in a cluster

Posted on 2014-03-05
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I have a quick and easy 500 question-

I have a 5.5 Cluster with 2 hosts configured with HA and DRS with the VM's on a SAN (DRS is in Partial Automated until I get a warm and fuzzy with DRS).

I want to enter one of the Hosts into maintenace mode. Do I need to perform the same procedures as if it was not a cluster?
Meaning, Do I need to vmotion off the VM's onto the other server (I presume I need to disable temp DRS) , then enter maintenace mode, or will VMWare do this automatically if I try entering Maintenance mode?

Thats all- Thanks
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Question by:BKennedy2008
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mcsween earned 300 total points
ID: 39907302
First make sure there is no removable media attached to any VMs running on that ESXi host (e.g. ISO Image mounted from a datastore or shared CD ROM).

Just right click the host and enter maintenance mode, check the box and vMotion will take care of the rest.  You do not have to disable HA and DRS

I have my DRS set to fully automated applying 1 - 4 recommendations.  It has been that way for years.  I'm running about 50 guests on 3 ESXi 5.5 Hosts.

On a side note, if you are doing this to patch a system you should remediate it from the update manager tab.  This will pop a wizard that will detach all removable media from guests if required then put in maintenance mode, install patches, reboot, re-attach, and exit maintenance mode all on its own.
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by:Abhilash
Abhilash earned 100 total points
ID: 39907315
If the host is inside a DRS-enabled cluster, entering maintenance mode causes DRS to attempt to automatically evacuate powered-on virtual machines from the host using vMotion.

But note that DRS needs to be enabled on your cluster in Fully Automated mode if you want VirtualCenter to migrate your running virtual machines automatically to other hosts when placing your host in Maintenance Mode.
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by:Giladn
Giladn earned 100 total points
ID: 39907320
Hi,

1. yes, vMotion could be nice, only if HA is on, otherwise turn the servers off the migrate to the other host - do check for available resources before doing that.

2. Vmotion is great when one server is down, not on maintenance, best practice if it's planned would be to migrate them live to the other machine, do not enter maintenance mode without doing that if you can plan it ahead.
for a complete answer, since your setup includes SAN, HA and DRS -  vMotion is automated when entering maintenance mode.
 
Hope this helps,

Gilad
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by:BKennedy2008
ID: 39907343
Thnaks All for the info!
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