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VMware Fault Tolerance (FT) - How to maintain HA during a reboot?

Posted on 2017-11-14
Medium Priority
Last Modified: 2017-11-14
I have setup FT on a VM in VMware 6.5. The objective was to have this server always available. However, after applying Windows updates when I reboot the server, the 'failover VM' does not seem to take over. Is this limitation of FT - that high availability is there only for unexpected hardware failure, not for software maintenance operations?

Is MS Cluster the only solution in this scenario? Thanks.

Question by:Akulsh
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LVL 125

Assisted Solution

by:Andrew Hancock (VMware vExpert / EE MVE^2)
Andrew Hancock (VMware vExpert / EE MVE^2) earned 2000 total points
ID: 42367975
Your FT Primary VM is in lock step "sync" with the Secondary VM.

This is to be expected and by design. All changes to the Primary will be reflected on the Secondary, especially if their is an OS failure e.g. BSOD on the Primary, will cause a BSOD on the secondary.

It it's FT based on Host Failure. If a Host fails due to uncontrolled shutdown, service will continue, because of the secondary on another host.

It depends what service you have,

Assisted Solution

Akulsh earned 0 total points
ID: 42368063
This is a very serious limitation of FT, beside the other ones like inability to do backups since you cannot take snapshots.
I think I will do Network Load Balancing for this web server.
FT is much ado about nothing...
LVL 125

Accepted Solution

Andrew Hancock (VMware vExpert / EE MVE^2) earned 2000 total points
ID: 42368091
Correct, you cannot do snapshots.

If you have a Web Server, or Web Farm, A Network Load Balancer would be a much better choice, if configured correctly.

Author Comment

ID: 42368101
Conclusion: Stay away from FT feature of VMware.
LVL 125
ID: 42368130
Depends on your requirements and selecting the correct technology to provide you desired level of service.

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