Monday, April 19, 2010

Step By Step Guide To Configure SQL Server Failover Cluster

To start installing your SQL Server 2005 cluster, you will need the installation CD or DVD or you can either install it directly from the media, or copy the install files from the media to the current active node of the cluster, and run the setup program from there.

To start the installation, run Setup.exe. you will get the first install dialog box as shown below.

Once the prerequisite components have been successfully installed, the SQL Server Installation Wizard launches, as you can see below.

Click Next to proceed.

The next step is you want all checks to be successful, with a green icon. If you get any yellow warning or red error icons, then you need to find out the problem, and correct it before proceeding. In some cases, yellow warning icons can be ignored, but red error icons cannot. If you have any yellow or red icons, you may have to abort the setup process, fix the problem, then restart the setup process. If all is well, click Next to proceed. 

The next dialog box is Registration, where you enter your company name and license key, if applicable.

Next, you must select the SQL Server 2005 components to install. See below.

I checked the options to "Create a SQL Server failover cluster" and to "Create an Analysis Server failover cluster" (currently grayed out). Since we are creating a SQL Server 2005 cluster, you must select the "Create a SQL Server failover cluster." If you are going to install Analysis Services then you must select "Create an Analysis Server failover cluster." Once you have selected all the components you need to include, click Next.

As with any install of SQL Server 2005, the next step is to select the name of the instance to be installed. You can choose between a default instance and a named instance. Click Next to proceed.

Now, here is a very important step. This is when you enter the name of the virtual SQL Server 2005 instance you are currently installing. This is the name that clients will use to connect to this instance. Ideally, you have already selected a name to use that makes the most sense to your organization. Click Next to proceed. If you ever need to change this virtual name, you will have to uninstall and then reinstall SQL Server 2005 clustering.

This is also a very important step. This is where you enter the virtual IP address for this instance of SQL Server 2005. Like the cluster virtual name, it is used by clients to connect to this instance of SQL Server 2005. The IP address must belong to the same subnet as the IP addresses used by all of the nodes.

In addition, in this dialog box you must select the network to be used for the public network—the network used by the clients to connect to this instance of SQL Server 2005. All of the available networks will be listed in the drop-down box next to Network to use. If you have named the public and private networks Public and Private, respectively, it will be very easy for you to select the correct network, as I have above.

Once you have entered the IP address and selected the public network, click on Add, so that the information you just selected is in the Selected networks and IP addresses box. Then click Next.

In this dialog box, select the SQL Server Group as the group where you want to create the SQL Server resources. In addition, be sure that the Data files will be created on the correct logical drive of the shared array using the folder name you choose. Click Next to proceed.

Now, you specify which nodes you want to install this instance of SQL Server on. Because our example is for only two nodes, the default setting works for us. Notice that under Required node is SQL2005A, which is the name of the physical node where we are running the setup program. And under Selected nodes is SQL2005B, the second physical node in our 2-node cluster. Click Next to proceed.

In this dialog box, we must select an account (with password) that has administrative rights on all of the nodes where we want to install this instance of SQL Server 2005. This can be any domain account that is a local administrator of all the nodes. Click Next to proceed.

The Service Account dialog box is identical to the one you see when you install SQL Server 2005 on a non-cluster, and it is configured the same. Click Next to proceed.

In this dialog box, you must select pre-existing global domain groups that are used to contain the startup account for each clustered service. You can choose to add all three services to the same global domain group, or to create separate global domain groups, one for each service, as has been done above. Once you have selected appropriate domain groups, click Next to proceed.

The next four dialog boxes of the Installation Wizard, not shown here, are the same as for any other installation of SQL Server 2005. After you have completed these steps, the installation of this instance of SQL Server 2005 begins, and you see the following dialog box.

The installation process will take some time as it is installing the binaries on both nodes of the cluster, and installing the system data files on the shared array. The Setup Progress step shows the status of the first node's install. If you want to see the status of the second node's install, you can change the drop-down box watch its progress.

As the installation proceeds, you will want to see all green icons next to each installation step. If any step should fail, then the entire installation process will need to be rolled back.

Sometimes, if the installation breaks, it just dies and a rollback of what has been done so far will not occur. If this is the case then you manually uninstall the node instead of entire and try, if it fails again then you have to do from scratch OS.

It the installation was a successful, you will see a final dialog box, where you can click Finish. SQL Server 2005 clustering had now been successfully installed on the two cluster nodes.
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