About virtual-to-virtual (in-guest) clustering and failover

When you run Cluster Server (VCS) in multiple guest virtual machines, you can create guest-to-guest (also called virtual-to-virtual) clusters. You can use VCS to monitor individual applications running inside each guest. In case of application failure, VCS can fail over the application to another guest virtual machine in the virtual-to-virtual cluster.

The following figure illustrates a sample in-guest VCS deployment in one virtual machine each across two physical hosts.

Figure: VCS in-guest clustering

VCS in-guest clustering

The virtual machines in the cluster can either be on the same physical host or on different physical hosts. VCS is installed in the virtual machines and creates a cluster. This is just like the cluster that VCS creates among physical systems. The cluster monitors the applications and services that run inside the virtual machines. Any faulted application or service is failed over to another virtual machine in the cluster.

To ensure application failover, application data must reside on storage shared by member virtual machines within the cluster.


In this configuration, since VCS runs inside a virtual machine, VCS cannot fail over the virtual machine itself.

VCS can be deployed inside guest virtual machines (in-guest support) in the following virtualization environments: