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VMware 5.5 HA and Host Isolation question

Posted on 2015-02-20
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Last Modified: 2015-02-26
Hello all,

I hope you can help me understand HA and host isolation. I had a situation where a host was connected to a non-redundant network and lost both LAN and management network access at the same time.

The VMs did not shut down and restart on another host - now apparently this is normal as the host still had iscsi/storage access therefore VMs did not need to shut-down - please can you let me know if this is correct?

Host isolation response is configured to shut down VMs, what sort of failure needs to occur to make the host isolated so VMs power off and restart elsewhere?

Many Thanks,
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Question by:Nolan Gustavo
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Shahnawaz Ahmed earned 2000 total points
ID: 40621135
Dear MarkFogel,

VMware HA works on Master Slave architecture which works on Heartbeat packets

Scenario 3 node HA cluster (1 Master & 2 Slaves)  =>

 Master Action :-
 IF master doesn't receive heart beat packet from slave then Master check the lock in the storage if lock exist then no action reuired.

Slave Action :-
1) If Slave doesn't receive heartbeat from master so it try to participate in the election & same slave unable to talk to another slave then it becomes master & check protected list of Vcentre. When this slave found that protected list is on Then no Action required.
2) Now isolated slave try to ping Gateway (Network Isolation Address) if unable to ping NIA (Network Isolation Address) then slave takes the action
A) Leave Power ON
B) Shutdown
C) Power off

The VMs did not shut down and restart on another host - now apparently this is normal as the host still had iscsi/storage access therefore VMs did not need to shut-down - please can you let me know if this is correct?

This is correct
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by:Nolan Gustavo
ID: 40621306
Thanks for the quick response
How can I find out if the host was a master or slave at the time if failure?
Also point number 2, if LAN and management networks were down this host would have not been able to ping NIA how come it did not shut down the VMs?
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