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Step 2: Deploy the Head Node

Updated: January 13, 2014

Applies To: Microsoft HPC Pack 2012, Microsoft HPC Pack 2012 R2

The next step in the deployment of your HPC cluster is to deploy the head node. The following checklist describes the steps involved in deploying the head node.

Checklist: Deploy the head node

 

Task Description

2.1. Install Windows Server on the head node computer

Install an edition of Windows Server on the computer that will act as the head node.

2.2. Join the head node computer to a domain

Join the computer that will act as the head node to an Active Directory domain.

2.3. Configure a Windows Server failover cluster to enable high availability of the head node (optional)

If you want to enable your HPC cluster to continue running jobs after a disruption in services on a head node computer, configure a single-site or multi-site file server failover cluster for installation of HPC Pack.

2.4. Install Microsoft HPC Pack on the head node computer

Install HPC Pack on the computer that will act as the head node, using the installation media or from a network location.

2.1. Install Windows Server on the head node computer

To deploy the head node of your HPC cluster, you must install a supported edition of Windows Server 2012 R2 or Windows Server 2012 on the computer (or computers) that will act as the head node. For more information about the system requirements to install HPC Pack on the head node, see System Requirements for Microsoft HPC Pack 2012 R2 and HPC Pack 2012.

ImportantImportant
  • Before you install the operating system, you should obtain and install the latest BIOS, firmware, and device drivers for your head node computer from the websites of your hardware vendors.

  • We strongly recommend that you perform a clean installation of Windows Server before installing HPC Pack. If you want to install HPC Pack on an existing installation of Windows Server, remove all server roles first, and then follow the procedures in this guide. For procedures to remove role services and server roles by using the Windows Server 2012 R2 or Windows Server 2012 Server Manager GUI or command-line tools, see Install or Uninstall Roles, Role Services, or Features.

    HPC Pack cannot be installed on the head node computer if the Deployment Server role service of the Deployment Services role is already installed.

  • Windows Server must be installed in one of the following languages that is supported by HPC Pack on the head node: English, Japanese, or Simplified Chinese.

  • Ensure that the Windows Firewall service is running on the head node. This is necessary so that HPC-specific firewall rules for an HPC cluster can be applied during and after installation of HPC Pack. By default in Windows Server 2012 R2 or Windows Server 2012, the Windows Firewall service is running.

For information about the supported operating systems for other HPC cluster node roles, see Step 1: Prepare for Your Deployment, earlier in this guide.

2.2. Join the head node computer to a domain

As described in Step 1: Prepare for Your Deployment, the head node must be a member of an Active Directory domain. After you have installed the operating system on the head node, manually join the head node to an existing Active Directory domain.

2.3. Configure a Windows Server failover cluster to enable high availability of the head node (optional)

If you want to enable your HPC cluster to continue running jobs after a disruption in services on the head node computer, prepare a single-site or multi-site file server failover cluster for installation of HPC Pack. The failover cluster can consist of from 2 to 64 computers that are running Windows Server 2012 R2 or Windows Server 2012 that will provide head node services. For information about the Failover Cluster Manager and links to general failover cluster deployment and operational topics, see Failover Clustering Overview.

The detailed considerations and steps to prepare a file server failover cluster for installation of HPC Pack are beyond the scope of this guide. The high-level steps to prepare a file server failover cluster in which you can install HPC Pack on multiple computers include the following:

  1. Plan the cluster topology to enable either intrasite or intersite failover of head node services, depending on your needs to continue cluster operations in different failure scenarios.

  2. Use hardware that supports failover clusters in Windows Server 2012 R2 or Windows Server 2012, install the operating system on one or more computers, and then join the computers to the same Active Directory domain.

  3. Configure networks and shared storage for the failover cluster.

  4. Install the Failover Cluster Manager on each computer on which you will install HPC Pack.

  5. Validate the failover cluster configuration. This is required for the failover cluster to be supported by Microsoft.

  6. Create the failover cluster by specifying the computers that you configured.

  7. Ensure that one or more cluster networks are configured to allow communication between the failover cluster nodes.

  8. Configure a highly available file server for installation of the HPC head node services.

    noteNote
    The network name of the clustered file server will be the name used within the HPC cluster to communicate with the head node.

  9. Optionally, create a SQL Server 2012 failover cluster that will be used to store the HPC databases. This step is not required, but it is recommended to avoid creating a single point of failure for the HPC cluster.

For detailed steps to prepare a failover cluster to configure a highly available HPC head node, see Configuring the HPC Pack Head Node for High Availability.

2.4. Install Microsoft HPC Pack on the head node computer

After the operating system is installed on the head node computer (or computers), and the head node is joined to an Active Directory domain, install HPC Pack on the head node.

ImportantImportant
  • To install HPC Pack, you must be logged on with a domain user account that is a member of the Administrators group on the head node computer.

  • Certain installation options, such as configuring the HPC databases that are required for operation of the cluster on remote database servers, require that you to complete preparation steps before you install HPC Pack. For more information, see Step 1: Prepare for Your Deployment, earlier in this guide.

  • Before you install a version of HPC Pack, we recommend that you review the corresponding release notes for that version.

  • If the computer has a restart pending (for example, after updates were applied), you should restart the node before you start the installation. Otherwise, the HPC Pack installation can fail during configuration of certain server roles or features. If this occurs, you can safely cancel the installation, restart the computer, and resume the installation.

To install Microsoft HPC Pack on the head node computer
  1. To start the HPC Pack Installation Wizard on the computer that will act as the head node, run Setup.exe from the HPC Pack installation media or from a network location.

  2. On the HPC Pack Setup screen, click New installation or add new features to an existing installation.

  3. In the HPC Pack Installation Wizard, on the Getting Started page, click Next.

  4. On the Microsoft Software User Agreement page, read or print the software license terms in the license agreement, and accept or reject the terms of that agreement. If you accept the terms, click Next.

  5. On the Select Installation Type page, click Create a new HPC cluster by creating a head node, and then click Next.

  6. If you are installing HPC Pack on a computer that is a configured in a failover cluster, the Head Node Installation in a Failover Cluster page appears. In Name of clustered instance in the failover cluster, specify the network name of the clustered file server that you created in 2.3. Configure a Windows Server failover cluster to enable high availability of the head node (optional), earlier in this guide. Then, click Next.

  7. On the Installation Rules page, review the results of the pre-installation tests on your environment. If the Status of an item is Failed, review the information provided on the test and make any necessary configuration changes in your environment. If necessary, to run the tests again, click Rerun, or start the installation of HPC Pack again. After all the tests pass, click Next.

  8. On the HPC DB Configuration page, select either the head node or a remote server that is running Microsoft SQL Server as the location for each of the five HPC databases. Depending on your selections, you then configure the following settings for each database:

    • The folders for each database and each database log.

    • For each database that is configured on a remote server that is running a supported version of Microsoft SQL Server, the SQL Server connection string and other settings to access the remote database.

    ImportantImportant
    If you choose to install one or more HPC databases on a remote server, the database must already be created and configured for remote access before you can configure settings during the installation of HPC Pack. For more information, see 1.3. Decide if you want to deploy your cluster with remote databases, earlier in this guide.

  9. On the Install Location page, specify locations for the following files and data:

    • The program files for HPC Pack on the head node.

    • Data on the head node, such as log files and the operating system images that will be deployed to on-premises nodes.

    • A file share on the head node or a network file server for use by the HPC runtimes, including the SOA common data runtime. This file share is automatically configured for read and write access by HPC users, and for full control by HPC administrators. A default storage quota of 25 GB is configured. For more information, including additional steps to configure a remote file share, see Configure the Runtime Data Share.

  10. Follow the remaining steps in the installation wizard to complete the installation of HPC Pack.

To add a new head node to an existing failover cluster
  1. To add a head node to an existing failover cluster of HPC Pack head nodes, on a failover cluster node, run Setup.exe from the HPC Pack installation media or from a network location.

  2. On the HPC Pack Setup screen, click Add a new head node to an existing failover cluster.

  3. In the HPC Pack Installation Wizard, on the Getting Started page, click Next.

  4. On the Microsoft Software User Agreement page, read or print the software license terms in the license agreement, and accept or reject the terms of that agreement. If you accept the terms, click Next.

  5. On the Head Node Installation in a Failover Cluster page, click Next.

  6. Follow the remaining steps in the installation wizard to complete the installation of HPC Pack.