Refreshing SQL 2008 Cluster Hardware

Existing environment:

3 node SQL 2008 cluster built on windows 2008 server operating system. Each nodes hosting own database instance, all other nodes are configured as failover nodes for each instances.


Refresh server hardware to different model with zero down time for database services. Third party cluster manager agent, backup and monitoring agents should remain same.


Get details of cluster disks assigned to the existing nodes and assign same disks to the new server.

Cross check the disk availability and verify with existing nodes.

Solution summary:

Failover instance from one node and shut down the node for backup.

Use physical to physical migration tool to take image backup and restore the same to new proposed server hardware.

Bring up the new server and perform cleanup such as uninstall drivers/management tools related to old server hardware etc..

To view and remove unused devices in Device Manager,

Open command prompt as administrator and run following commands

Set devmgr_show_nonpresent_devices=1


Click on view ->  show hidden devices

All devices (used and unused) will be listed,

Right click on the one grayed (unused), select Uninstall.

Make sure to select “remove drivers for this device” and click OK.

Evict the missing node (old server node) from SQL database cluster

Remove old cluster configuration settings from new server.

Open command prompt as administrator and run following commands

Cluster node <node name> /forcecleanup

Refresh (remove and add ) the  failover clustering feature

Rejoin the node to existing database cluster

Assign resource in all groups

To verify the node assignment on all resources,

  1. Right      click each and every resources,      expand resources wherever required.
  2. Select      Properties.
  3. Click      “Advanced Policies”.
  4. Check      all nodes are checked in the “Possible Owners” box.

Repeat 1-4 on the entire resource group

Failback the instance to new node and observe application connectivity

Repeat the same for other nodes….


About Jayachandran PK
My passion is for Microsoft technologies and how if properly implemented, they can provide actual value for an organization especially in the field of infrastructure, virtualization and system monitoring. I work for the biggest Microsoft partner in Kuwait, specialized in project consultation and implementation services for enterprise clients. When I'm not at work, I try to contribute back through a charitable organization dedicated to prompting cultural values of Kerala. In my free time, I dabble in gardening and am also an avid solar power aficionado.

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