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Shutting down and powering on a vSAN 6.x Cluster when vCenter Server is running on top of vSAN (2142676)

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Purpose

This article provides instructions for shutting down a vSAN (formerly known as Virtual SAN) 6.x cluster when vCenter Server is running on vSAN storage, and powering it on again after the downtime. 
 
Note: If you deploy vCenter Server on the vSAN datastore, you may not be able to use vCenter Server for troubleshooting if a problem occurs in the vSAN cluster. For related information, see the Design Considerations for a Virtual SAN Cluster section in the Administering VMware Virtual SAN guide.

Resolution

Shutting down the vSAN 6.x cluster

To shut down the vSAN cluster:
  1. Shut down all virtual machines running on the vSAN Cluster.

    Note:The vCenter Server virtual machine must be shut down at the end.

  2. Note the host that your vCenter Server virtual machine resides on.

    Note: VMware recommends to migrate the vCenter Server virtual machine to the first ESXi host, so you can easily find the virtual machine when powering on your vSAN cluster again.

  3. Ensure that there are no vSAN components currently resynching. For more information, see the Monitor the Resynchronization Tasks in the Virtual SAN Cluster section in the Administering VMware Virtual SAN.
  4. Shut down the vCenter Server virtual machine. This makes the vSphere Web Client unavailable.
  5. Connect to the ESXi host shell. For more information, see  Using ESXi Shell in ESXi 5.x and 6.0 (2004746).
  6. Place all ESXi hosts into Maintenance Mode. This operation must be done using one of the CLI methods that supports setting the vSAN mode when entering Maintenance Mode. You can either do this by logging directly in to the ESXi Shell and running the ESXCLI command locally or you can invoke this operation on a remote system using ESXCLI.
  7. Run this ESXCLI command and ensure that the No Action option is selected when you enter Maintenance Mode:

    # esxcli system maintenanceMode set -e true -m noAction

  8. Shut down all ESXi hosts. You can log in to each ESXi hosts using either the vSphere Client or the ESXi shell. You can also perform this operation remotely using a vSphere API, such as PowerCLI.

Powering on the vSAN 6.x cluster

To power on your vSAN cluster:
  1. Boot up the ESXi hosts through remote console session or physically.
  2. Connect to the shell of each ESXi host and run this command to exit maintenance mode:

    # esxcli system maintenanceMode set -e false

  3. Locate your vCenter virtual machine and power it on using a vSphere client connection directly to the host.
  4. Using the vSphere Client, connect to the ESXi host that contains your vCenter virtual machine. Power on your vCenter Server

    Note: This should be on the first ESXi host, If you moved this virtual machine to that host in step 2 of the shut down procedure.

  5. Connect to your vCenter Server using the vSphere Web Client.

    Note: It may take a few minutes for vCenter Server to become available again

  6. Do a quick health check on the vSAN cluster. Check for network partitions and resyncing components. For more information, see the Monitoring Virtual SAN section of the Administering VMware Virtual SAN.
  7. Power on the remaining virtual machines in the vSAN cluster.

See Also

Update History

04/18/2017 - Added vSAN 6.5 and 6.6 to Products

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