Microsoft KB Archive/283715

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The Features of the Local Quorum Resource on Windows Server 2003 Clusters

Article ID: 283715

Article Last Modified on 3/1/2007


  • Microsoft Windows Server 2003, Enterprise Edition (32-bit x86)
  • Microsoft Windows Server 2003, Datacenter Edition (32-bit x86)
  • Microsoft Windows Advanced Server, Limited Edition

This article was previously published under Q283715


This article discusses the features of the local quorum resource on Windows Server 2003-based clusters.


In Microsoft Windows NT 4.0 and Microsoft Windows 2000 you can perform a local quorum installation of a server cluster to create a stand-alone cluster. This cluster is going to be a single server, with no shared disk. This functionality remains the same with Windows Server 2003; however, the Cluster service automatically creates the local quorum resource if it does not detect a shared disk (no special switches or installation procedure is required). Another new feature is the creation of a local quorum resource after it has been installed on any cluster.

When you run a cluster with a local quorum, the quorum information is stored in the %SystemRoot%\Cluster\MSCS folder. Because this information is stored locally, it is not replicated to other nodes in the cluster.

CAUTION: Do not use a local quorum resource for the quorum on a multi-node cluster as this procedure can cause the loss of the cluster configuration data and the failure of the entire cluster.

The creation of a local quorum resource, after its installation on a multi-node cluster for temporary usage, can have some benefits when you need to perform maintenance on the shared-disk subsystem. For example, if a complete failure of all shared disks for a clustered print server occurred, you can start the Cluster service with the /fixquorum switch, create a local quorum resource, and then set it to be your quorum.

When you have the cluster online, you can redirect the spool folder to a folder on the local disk. This action can set up your cluster as a single-node cluster. You cannot have any failover capabilities, but you can still print requests to clients while you replace the defective hardware. This action is possible because there is no unique data on the shared disk that the cluster needs to be able to print.

To create a local quorum resource after its installation:

  1. Start Cluster Administrator (the CluAdmin.exe program).
  2. Right-click a group and click New, and then click Resource.
  3. Give the resource a name, and then click Local Quorum.
  4. Select only one node to be the possible owner of this resource.
  5. Do not set any dependencies, just click Next.
  6. Click Finish.
  7. Right-click the new resource, and then click Bring Online.

You can now change the quorum disk designation if you want. For information about how to do this, refer to the following Microsoft Knowledge Base article:

280353 How to Change Quorum Disk Designation

Additional query words: mscs local quorum

Keywords: kbenv kbinfo KB283715