How to Successfully Create a Hyper-V Cluster Using Virtual Machine Manager (Part 7)

If you would like to read the other parts in this article series please go to:

In part 6 of this article series, we explained tabs available on the property page of a Hyper-V cluster managed by Virtual Machine Manager (VMM). In this and next part of this article series, we will take a look at the actions available on the Right Click context menu of a Hyper-V cluster in VMM.  

As you can see, I have created a Hyper-V cluster named HVCluster. HVCluster holds two Hyper-V nodes named Primary and Secondary. When you right click on Hyper-V cluster, you will see a number of actions on the Right Click context menu as shown in the figure below.

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Figure 1

These actions help you deploy VMM services, virtual machines, performing dynamic optimization manually, moving cluster to another VMM host group, demoting cluster, adding another node to existing Hyper-V cluster, validating cluster, and removing complete Hyper-V cluster from the VMM. Let’s take a look at each of these actions.

“Create Service” and “Create Virtual Machine”: “Create Service” and “Create Virtual Machine” actions are used to deploy a service or a virtual machine on the Hyper-V cluster. When you click on “Create Service” action, VMM will open Create Service Window as shown in the figure below.

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Figure 2

You can use either an existing service template or create a new service template to allow you to create a service. When you click Ok, VMM will open Service Designer to help you build the service and then deploy to the Hyper-V cluster.

Clicking on “Create Virtual Machine” action will launch a virtual machine creation wizard as shown in the figure below.

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Figure
3

Since the overall purpose of creating a Hyper-V cluster is to make virtual machines highly available, we also need to learn how to deploy a virtual machine in a Hyper-V cluster. We will talk about “Create Virtual Machine” and “Create Service” actions in detail when we explain “how to deploy a virtual machine or a service on a Hyper-V cluster via VMM” in the next parts of this article series.

Refresh: Refresh action helps you refresh Hyper-V cluster properties from all cluster nodes and then display the updated information about the host cluster in the VMM console. Note that VMM runs “Read-SCVMHostCluster” PowerShell cmdlet as part of the refresh VMM job as shown in the figure below.

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Figure 4

You can also refresh host cluster by executing the Read-SCVMHostCluster cmdlet manually as shown in the below command:

  • Get-SCVMHostCluster –Name “HVCluster.Test.Local” | Read-SCMHostCluster

Optimize Hosts: VMM offers balancing cluster nodes resources with the help of Dynamic Optimization feature. The dynamic optimization feature helps you balance cluster nodes by live migrating virtual machines to cluster nodes in the Hyper-V cluster as and when needed. Dynamic Optimization settings are configured on the property page of a VMM host group. Once configured, VMM invokes Dynamic Optimization function every 10 minutes (default interval), collect the current resource utilization on all the nodes of a Host cluster, compare with the threshold values configured on the Dynamic Optimization tab of the VMM host group and then live migrate the virtual machines automatically if need be.

In case you need to perform Dynamic Optimization for the Hyper-V cluster manually, you will need to select “Optimize Hosts” action on the right click context menu of a host cluster. “Optimize Hosts” action does the same thing as automatic Dynamic Optimization function except, you will be presented with a list of virtual machines to be live migrated to another node in the Host cluster. When you click on the “Optimize Hosts” action, VMM will show you Optimize Host Cluster window as shown in the figure below.

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Figure 5

VMM will connect to all nodes running in the host cluster, will gather the current resource utilization on all the nodes and then compare the values with the threshold values that you have configured on the Dynamic Optimization tab on the property page of a VMM host group. In case VMM does not see a need to optimize host cluster, a message will be shown as seen in the screenshot below.

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Figure 6

Move to Host Group: Move to Host Group action is not used in a day to day operation. You may want to use “Move to Host Group” action only if the cluster location has been changed or if the cluster does not reflect the current physical location that the VMM host group is configured for. Although moving host cluster to another VMM host group is an easy task, but it is important to understand that host cluster and nodes will inherit settings that are configured on the target VMM host group. It is recommended that before you move host cluster to another VMM host group, make sure the host cluster that is being moved do not inherit the settings from the target VMM host group.

Uncluster: In case you need to uninstall failover clustering from all nodes of a host cluster, choosing “Uncluster” action from within the VMM helps you save a lot of time. It might take a considerable amount of time if you plan to proceed with removal of failover clustering features from all nodes using Failover Manager.

When you click on “Uncluster” action, VMM will show you a warning, as shown in the figure below:

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Figure 7

Clicking on the yes button shown above will instruct VMM to create a VMM job that will be processed in the background to remove clustering from all the nodes of the host cluster. It is important to understand that VMM will proceed with removal of the clustering feature from all nodes in the Hyper-V host cluster after you click “Yes” button. So before you begin, make sure that the host cluster does not host any highly available virtual machines or any other clustered services or applications.

Conclusion

This article explained some useful actions available on the Right Click context menu of a Hyper-V cluster managed by VMM.

In the next part of this article series, we will continue to explore other actions “Add Cluster Node”, “Validate Cluster”, “View Networking” and “Remove” actions.

If you would like to read the other parts in this article series please go to:

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