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How to Configure the Node and File Share Majority Quorum

 

Applies to: Exchange Server 2007 SP3, Exchange Server 2007 SP2, Exchange Server 2007 SP1

Topic Last Modified: 2010-05-03

This topic explains how to use Cluster.exe or the Failover Cluster Management tool to configure a Node and File Share Majority quorum for a Windows Server 2008 failover cluster that will host a cluster continuous replication (CCR) environment.

This topic also explains how to create and secure a file share on a stand-alone server running the Microsoft Windows Server operating system for use by the Node and File Share Majority quorum.

After both nodes have been added to the cluster, and after the cluster networking components have been configured, the failover cluster quorum must be configured. Specifically, you must configure and secure a file share on a separate computer, and you must configure the cluster to use a Node and File Share Majority quorum.

To perform this procedure, the account you use must be delegated the following:

  • Membership in the local Administrators group on both nodes in the cluster
  • A minimum of Full Control share permissions for the file share that will be used for the File Share Majority quorum

For more information about permissions, delegating roles, and the rights that are required to administer Microsoft Exchange Server 2007, see Permission Considerations.

The file share to be used for the Node and File Share Majority quorum must be created and secured before performing the following procedure. If the file share has not been created or correctly secured, the following procedure will fail. The file share can be hosted on any computer running a Windows operating system. However, we recommend that you host the file share on a Hub Transport server in the Active Directory directory service site containing the clustered mailbox server. This location allows an Exchange administrator to have full and complete control over the share (and the server hosting the share), which is critical for high availability.

These procedures should be performed after the second node is added to the cluster and before the clustered mailbox server is installed.

In the first procedure:

  • <CMSName> refers to the name of the clustered mailbox server (for example, E2K7CCR).
  • <Directory> refers to the full path to the directory being shared (for example, C:\ FSM_DIR_E2K7CCR).
  • <VCO> is the virtual computer object that represents the cluster (sometimes referred to as the cluster network object or CNO). Because the VCO is a computer account, you must add a dollar sign symbol, $, to the end of the VCO name. If you do not include the $ symbol, the command will fail with the following error: System error 1332 has occurred. No mapping between account names and security IDs was done.

When specifying the preceding parameters in your commands, do not include the <> characters (for example, use EXMBX1$, not <EXMBX1$>).

  1. On the system that will host the file share, create a directory that will be used for the share by running the following command at a command prompt:

    mkdir <Directory>
    
    noteNote:
    We recommend using the following naming convention for the directory name: FSM_DIR_<CMSName>
  2. Create the share by running the following command:

    net share <shareName>=<Directory> /GRANT:<VCO>,FULL
    
    noteNote:
    We recommend using the following naming convention for the share name: FSM_<CMSName>
  3. Assign file system permissions to the directory being shared by running the following command:

    cacls <Directory> /G BUILTIN\Administrators:F <VCO>:F
    

  1. On either node in the cluster, open the Failover Cluster Management tool.

  2. Right-click the cluster node, select More Actions, and then select Configure Cluster Quorum Settings. The Configure Cluster Quorum Wizard starts.

  3. If this is the first time this wizard has been run in the cluster, the Before You Begin page appears. There is an option to hide this page on subsequent uses of the wizard, so the first page to appear might instead be the Select Quorum Configuration page. If the Before You Begin page is displayed, read the information on that page, and then click Next to continue.

  4. On the Select Quorum Configuration page, select Node and File Share Majority (for clusters with special configurations), and then click Next.

  5. Enter the Universal Naming Convention (UNC) path to the file share that you created in the Shared Folder Path field. Alternatively, you can use the Browse button to browse for a server, and to display the available shares on a server. Browsing for a server and shares is recommended, because it reduces the chances for typographical errors in the UNC path. After the Shared Folder Path field has been populated with the UNC path to the file share, click Next.

  6. Permissions to the share are verified. If there are any problems accessing the share, an error message is displayed. If there are no problems accessing the share, the Confirmation page appears. Review the configuration changes that are about to be made, and if they are correct, click Next to make the changes.

  7. After the cluster quorum settings have been changed to use a Node and File Share Majority quorum, the Summary page is displayed. Review the summary information, and then click Finish to close the wizard.

  8. In the Failover Cluster Management tool, click the clustered mailbox server.

  9. In the details pane, click Cluster Core Resources.

  10. Double-click the File Share Witness resource.

  11. Click the Policies tab.

  12. In the If all the restart attempts fail, being restarted again after the specified period (hh:mm) box, type 00:15.

    noteNote:
    This action changes the cluster file share witness restart time from the default restart time of one hour to 15 minutes.
  13. Click OK to apply the changes, and then exit the Failover Cluster Management tool.

    After the cluster quorum has been configured, we recommend that you validate the cluster before you install Exchange 2007. For detailed steps to validate the cluster, see How to Validate a Windows Server 2008 Failover Cluster Configuration.

  1. On either node in the cluster, open a Command Prompt window.

  2. Create a File Share Witness resource in the default cluster group by running the following command:

    Cluster.exe /cluster:<ClusterName> res "File Share Witness (UNCPath)" /create /group:"Cluster Group" /type:"File Share Witness" /priv SharePath=<UNCPath>
    

    For example, if the cluster name is Clus1 and the UNC path for the file share is \\server1\clus1, you would run the following command:

    Cluster.exe /cluster:Clus1 res "File Share Witness (\\server1\clus1)" /create /group:"Cluster Group" /type:"File Share Witness" /priv SharePath=\\server1\clus1
    
  3. Bring the new File Share Witness resource online by running the following command:

    Cluster.exe res "File Share Witness (UNCPath)" /online
    
  4. Configure the cluster to use a Node and File Share Majority quorum and the previously created file share by running the following command:

    Cluster.exe <ClusterName> /quorum:"File Share Witness (UNCPath)"
    
  5. Configure the RetryPeriodOnFailure option to retry every 15 minutes instead of the default retry period of one hour. To do this, run the following command:

    Cluster.exe <ClusterName> res "File Share Witness (UNCPath)" /prop RetryPeriodOnFailure=900000:dword
    

For more information about cluster continuous replication (CCR), see Cluster Continuous Replication and Installing Cluster Continuous Replication on Windows Server 2008.

To ensure that you are reading the most up-to-date information and to find additional Exchange Server 2007 documentation, visit the Exchange Server TechCenter.
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