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Installing SFW + MSCS option into a running MSCS Cluster - Help?

Partner    VIP    Accredited Certified
Hi all,

I need to install SFW 5.1 with the DMP & MSCS options into a running MSCS cluster. As usual the guides dont really cover this, only new installs. All disks are basic at the moment and my client only really wants SFW for DMP.


1. Do you  have to install the MSCS option when installing on a MSCS or can it continue to use Physical disk mappings? I assume it must as the convertion to a dynamic quorum is optional.
2. If the installation of the MSCS option is required then one would need to add the current basic disks (with partitions on them) to a cluster disk group. Is this possible, and should/can one add the windows diskgroup protection feature on it?
3. If the option is used and the disks are added to new dynamic cluster group, then one would need to remove all the physical disk resources from the cluster config, and replace it with a Volume Manager diskgroup resource (which starts all the volumes)?

Any help would be appreciated.


Riaan Badenhorst

Level 3
Employee Accredited
Hello Riaan,

In order to install SFW into an MSCS environment, the cluster must already be configured and running, which is exactly as you have it set at this time, if I understand correctly. So to answer your individual questions:

1) The MSCS option installs a .DLL (vxresext.dll) that allows for SFW to communicate with MSCS and provide the ability for the cluster to utilize VMDG resources. It should be installed but is not required, as the use of VMDG resources is optional anyway; however the continued use of Basic Disks or Physical Disk resources are not contingent upon this option being installed.

Additionally, if you do not install this option, then all disks being utilized by the cluster should always remain in the Basic Disk Group within SFW and should not be placed in a Dynamic Disk Group, as the cluster would then need to make use of the VMDG resource in order to access those disks. And yes, the Quorum disk being upgraded to a Dynamic Disk is completely optional.

2) The MSCS option is not required; however, you can upgrade Basic Disks (with Primary or Extended Partitions) to Dynamic Disks within a Dynamic Disk Group (to be used as a VMDG resource within the MSCS cluster). The only real caveat being that if you upgrade Basic Disks with Partitions to a Dynamic Disk, and one of these disks contains the Operating System for that system, you will no longer be able to boot to the O/S on the disk after the upgrade. So you'll not want to upgrade your O/S partition to Dynamic, as a suggestion.

3) This is correct. If changing from Physical Disk to VMDG resources within an existing MSCS cluster, the Physical Disk resources should be removed from the cluster configuration and replaced by VMDG resources; however, again, the option is not required for MSCS within SFW unless you plan to implement Dynamic Disk Groups (VMDG resources) within the cluster now, or at a later time.

Thank you,
Jay Jameson
Technical Support Engineer
Symantec Corp.

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