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HACMP Basics

HACMP Basics

IBM's HACMP exists for almost 15 years. It's not actually an IBM product, they bought it from
CLAM, which was later renamed to Availant and is now called LakeViewTech. Until august
2006, all development of HACMP was done by CLAM. Nowadays IBM does it's own
development of HACMP in Austin, Poughkeepsie and Bangalore

IBM's high availability solution for AIX, High Availability Cluster Multi Processing (HACMP),
consists of two components:

•High Availability: The process of ensuring an application is available for use through the use of
duplicated and/or shared resources (eliminating Single Points Of Failure – SPOF's)

.Cluster Multi-Processing: Multiple applications running on the same nodes with shared or
concurrent access to the data.

A high availability solution based on HACMP provides automated failure detection, diagnosis,
application recovery and node reintegration. With an appropriate application, HACMP can also
provide concurrent access to the data for parallel processing applications, thus offering excellent
horizontal scalability.

What needs to be protected? Ultimately, the goal of any IT solution in a critical environment is to
provide continuous service and data protection.

The High Availability is just one building block in achieving the continuous operation goal. The
High Availability is based on the availability hardware, software (OS and its components),
application and network components.

The main objective of the HACMP is to eliminate Single Points of Failure (SPOF's)

“…A fundamental design goal of (successful) cluster design is the elimination of single points of
failure (SPOFs)…”

Eliminate Single Point of Failure (SPOF)

Cluster Eliminated as a single point of failure

Node Using multiple nodes

Power Source Using Multiple circuits or uninterruptible
Network/adapter Using redundant network adapters
Network Using multiple networks to connect nodes.
TCP/IP Subsystem Using non-IP networks to connect adjoining nodes & clients
Disk adapter Using redundant disk adapter or multiple adapters
Disk Using multiple disks with mirroring or RAID
Application Add node for takeover; configure application monitor
Administrator Add backup or every very detailed operations guide
Site Add additional site.

Cluster Components

Here are the recommended practices for important cluster components.


HACMP supports clusters of up to 32 nodes, with any combination of active and standby nodes.
While it is possible to have all nodes in the cluster running applications (a configuration referred
to as "mutual takeover"), the most reliable and available clusters have at least one standby node -
one node that is normally not running any applications, but is available to take them over in the
event of a failure on an active

Additionally, it is important to pay attention to environmental considerations. Nodes should not

have a common power supply - which may happen if they are placed in a single rack. Similarly,
building a cluster of nodes that are actually logical partitions (LPARs) with a single footprint is
useful as a test cluster, but should not be considered for availability of production applications.
Nodes should be chosen that have sufficient I/O slots to install redundant network and disk
adapters. That is, twice as many slots as would be required for single node operation. This
naturally suggests that processors with small numbers of slots should be avoided. Use of nodes
without redundant adapters should not be considered best practice. Blades are an outstanding
example of this. And, just as every cluster resource should have a backup, the root volume group
in each node should be mirrored, or be on a RAID device.
Nodes should also be chosen so that when the production applications are run at peak load, there
are still sufficient CPU cycles and I/O bandwidth to allow HACMP to operate. The production
application should be carefully benchmarked (preferable) or modeled (if benchmarking is not
feasible) and nodes chosen so that they will not exceed 85% busy, even under the heaviest
expected load. Note that the takeover node should be sized to accommodate all possible
workloads: if there is a single standby backing up multiple primaries, it must be capable of
servicing multiple workloads. On hardware that supports dynamic LPAR operations, HACMP
can be configured to allocate processors and memory to a takeover node before applications are
started. However, these resources must actually be available, or acquirable through Capacity
Upgrade on Demand. The worst case situation – e.g., all the applications on a single node – must
be understood and planned for.

HACMP is a network centric application. HACMP networks not only provide client access to the
applications but are used to detect and diagnose node, network and adapter failures. To do this,
HACMP uses RSCT which sends heartbeats (UDP packets) over ALL defined networks. By
gathering heartbeat information on multiple nodes, HACMP can determine what type of failure
has occurred and initiate the appropriate recovery action. Being able to distinguish between
certain failures, for example the failure of a network and the failure of a node, requires a second
network! Although this additional network can be “IP based” it is possible that the entire IP
subsystem could fail within a given node. Therefore, in addition there should be at least one,
ideally two, non-IP networks. Failure to implement a non-IP network can potentially
lead to a Partitioned cluster, sometimes referred to as 'Split Brain' Syndrome. This situation can
occur if the IP network(s) between nodes becomes severed or in some cases congested. Since
each node is in fact, still very alive, HACMP would conclude the other nodes are down and
initiate a takeover. After takeover has occurred the application(s) potentially could be running
simultaneously on both nodes. If the shared disks are also online to both nodes, then the result
could lead to data divergence (massive data corruption). This is a situation which must be
avoided at all costs.

The most convenient way of configuring non-IP networks is to use Disk Heartbeating as it
removes the problems of distance with rs232 serial networks. Disk heartbeat networks only
require a small disk or LUN. Be careful not to put application data on these disks. Although, it is
possible to do so, you don't want any conflict with the disk heartbeat mechanism!


As stated above, each network defined to HACMP should have at least two adapters per node.
While it is possible to build a cluster with fewer, the reaction to adapter failures is more severe:
the resource group must be moved to another node. AIX provides support for Etherchannel, a
facility that can used to aggregate adapters (increase bandwidth) and provide network resilience.
Etherchannel is particularly useful for fast responses to adapter / switch failures. This must be set
up with some care in an HACMP cluster. When done properly, this provides the highest level of
availability against adapter failure. Refer to the IBM techdocs website: http://www- for further
details. Many System p TM servers contain built-in Ethernet adapters. If the nodes are physically
close together, it is possible to use the built-in Ethernet adapters on two nodes and a "cross-over"
Ethernet cable (sometimes referred to as a "data transfer" cable) to build an inexpensive Ethernet
network between two nodes for heart beating. Note that this is not a substitute for a non-IP
network. Some adapters provide multiple ports. One port on such an adapter should not be used
to back up another port on that adapter, since the adapter card itself is a common point of failure.
The same thing is true of the built-in Ethernet adapters in most System p servers and currently
available blades: the ports have a common adapter. When the built-in Ethernet adapter can be
used, best practice is to provide an additional adapter in the node, with the two backing up each
other. Be aware of network detection settings for the cluster and consider tuning these values. In
HACMP terms,these are referred to as NIM values. There are four settings per network type
which can be used : slow, normal, fast and custom. With the default setting of normal for a
standard Ethernet network, the network failure detection time would be approximately 20
seconds. With todays switched network technology this is a large amount of time. By switching
to a fast setting the detection time would be reduced by 50% (10 seconds) which in most cases
would be more acceptable. Be careful however, when using custom settings,
as setting these values too low can cause false takeovers to occur. These settings can be viewed
using a variety of techniques including : lssrc –ls topsvcs command (from a node which is active)
or odmget HACMPnim |grep –p ether and smitty hacmp.

The most important part of making an application run well in an HACMP cluster is
understanding the application's requirements. This is particularly important when designing the
Resource Group policy behavior and dependencies. For high availability to be achieved, the
application must have the ability to stop and start cleanly and not explicitly prompt for
interactive input. Some applications tend to bond to a particular OS characteristic such as a
uname, serial number or IP address. In most situations, these problems can be overcome. The
vast majority of commercial software products which run under AIX are well suited to be
clustered with HACMP.

Application Data Location

Where should application binaries and configuration data reside? There are many arguments to
this discussion.Generally, keep all the application binaries and data were possible on the shared
disk, as it is easy to forget to update it on all cluster nodes when it changes. This can prevent the
application from starting or working correctly, when it is run on a backup node. However, the
correct answer is not fixed. Many application vendors have suggestions on how to set up the
applications in a cluster, but these are recommendations.
Just when it seems to be clear cut as to how to implement an application, someone thinks of a
new set of circumstances. Here are some rules of thumb:
If the application is packaged in LPP format, it is usually installed on the local file systems in
rootvg. This behavior can be overcome, by bffcreate’ing the packages to disk and restoring them
with the preview option. This action will show the install paths, then symbolic links can be
created prior to install which point to the shared storage area. If the application is to be used on
multiple nodes with different data or configuration, then the application and configuration data
would probably be on local disks and the data sets on shared disk with application scripts altering
the configuration files during fallover. Also, remember the HACMP File Collections facility can
be used to keep the relevant configuration files in sync across the cluster. This is particularly
useful for applications which are installed locally.

Start/Stop Scripts
Application start scripts should not assume the status of the environment. Intelligent
programming should correct any irregular conditions that may occur. The cluster manager
spawns theses scripts off in a separate job in the background and carries on processing. Some
things a start script should do are:
First, check that the application is not currently running! This is especially crucial for v5.4 users
as resource groups can be placed into an unmanaged state (forced down action, in previous
Using the default startup options, HACMP will rerun the application start script which may
cause problems if the application is actually running. A simple and effective solution is to check
the state of the application on startup. If the application is found to be running just simply end
the start script with exit 0.
Verify the environment. Are all the disks, file systems, and IP labels available?
If different commands are to be run on different nodes, store the executing HOSTNAME to
variable. Check the state of the data. Does it require recovery? Always assume the data is in an
unknown state since the conditions that occurred to cause the takeover cannot be assumed.
Are there prerequisite services that must be running? Is it feasible to start all prerequisite services
from within the start script? Is there an inter-resource group dependency or resource group
sequencing that can guarantee the previous resource group has started correctly? HACMP v5.2
and later has facilities to implement checks on resource group dependencies including
collocation rules in HACMP v5.3.
Finally, when the environment looks right, start the application. If the environment is not correct
and error recovery procedures cannot fix the problem, ensure there are adequate alerts (email,
SMS, SMTP traps etc) sent out via the network to the appropriate support administrators.
Stop scripts are different from start scripts in that most applications have a documented start-up
routine and not necessarily a stop routine. The assumption is once the application is started why
stop it? Relying on a failure of a node to stop an application will be effective, but to use some of
the more advanced features of HACMP the requirement exists to stop an application cleanly.
Some of the issues to avoid are:

Be sure to terminate any child or spawned processes that may be using the disk resources.
Consider implementing child resource groups. Verify that the application is stopped to the point
that the file system is free to be unmounted. The fuser command may be used to verify that the
file system is free. In some cases it may be necessary to double check that the application
vendor’s stop script did actually stop all the processes, and occasionally it may be necessary to
forcibly terminate some processes. Clearly the goal is to return the machine to the state it was in
before the application start script was run. Failure to exit the stop script with a zero return code
as this will stop cluster processing. * Note: This is not the case with start scripts!
Remember, most vendor stop/starts scripts are not designed to be cluster proof! A useful tip is to
have stop and start script verbosely output using the same format to the /tmp/hacmp.out file. This
can be achieved by including the following line in the header of the script: set -x &&
HA failover scenarios

1. Graceful
For graceful failover, you can run “smitty clstop” then select graceful option. This
will not change anything except stopping the cluster on that node.
Note: If you stop the cluster, check the status using lssrc –g cluster, sometimes
clstrmgrES daemon will take long time to stop, DO NOT KILL THIS DAEMON.It will
stop automatically after a while.
You can do this on both the nodes

2. Takeover
For takeover, run “smitty clstop” with takeover option, this will stop the cluster on
that node and the standby node will take over the pakage
You can do this on both the nodes
3. Soft Pakckage Failover
Run smitty cm_hacmp_resource_group_and_application_management_menu
>>>Move a Resource Group to Another Node >>>>select the package name and
node name >>>enter
This will move the package from that node to the node that you have selected in
the above menu. This method will give lot of troubles in HA 4.5 whereas it runs good
on HA 5.2 unless we have any apps startup issues.
You can do this on both the nodes

4. Failover Network Adapter(s):
For this type of testing , run “ifconfig enx down” , then package IP will failover to
primary adapter. You can not even see any outage or anything.

We can manually (ifconfig enx up) bring it back to original adapter , but better to
reboot the server to bring the package back to the original node

5. Hardware Failure (crash):

This is a standard type of testing; run the command “reboot –q” then the node will
godown without stopping any apps and come up immediately. The package will
failover to the standby node with in 2 min os downtime (Even tough HA failover is
fast, some apps will take long time to start

Specifying the default gateway on a specific interface in HACMP

Specifying the default gateway on a specific interface

When you're using HACMP, you usually have multiple network adapters installed and thus
multiple network interface to handle with. If AIX configured the default gateway on a wrong
interface (like on your management interface instead of the boot interface), you might want to
change this, so network traffic isn't sent over the management interface. Here's how you can do

First, stop HACMP or do a take-over of the resource groups to another node; this will avoid any
problems with applications when you start fiddling with the network configuration.

Then open up a virtual terminal window to the host on your HMC. Otherwise you would loose
the connection, as soon as you drop the current default gateway.

Now you need to determine where your current default gateway is configured. You can do this
by typing: lsattr -El inet0 and netstat -nr. The lsattr command will show you the current default
gateway route and the netstat command will show you the interface it is configured on. You can
also check the ODM: odmget -q"attribute=route" CuAt.

Now, delete the default gateway like this:

lsattr -El inet0 | awk '$2 ~ /hopcount/ { print $2 }' | read GW
chdev -l inet0 -a delroute=${GW}
If you would now use the route command to specifiy the default gateway on a specific interface,
like this:
route add 0 [ip address of default gateway:] -if enX
You will have a working entry for the default gateway. But... the route command does not
change anything in the ODM. As soon as your system reboots; the default gateway is gone again.
Not a good idea.

A better solution is to use the chdev command:

chdev -l inet0 -a addroute=net,-hopcount,0,,0,[ip address of default gateway]
This will set the default gateway to the first interface available.

To specify the interface use:

chdev -l inet0 -a addroute=net,-hopcount,0,if,enX,,0,[ip address of default gateway]
Substitute the correct interface for enX in the command above.

If you previously used the route add command, and after that you use chdev to enter the default
gateway, then this will fail. You have to delete it first by using route delete 0, and then give the
chdev command.

Afterwards, check with lsattr -El inet0 and odmget -q"attribute=route" CuAt if the new default
gateway is properly configured. And ofcourse, try to ping the IP address of the default gateway
and some outside address. Now reboot your system and check if the default gateway remains
configured on the correct interface. And startup HACMP again!

HACMP v5.x Disk Heartbeat device configuration

Creating a Disk Heartbeat device in HACMP v5.x

This document is intended to supplement existing documentation on how to configure, test, and
monitor a disk heartbeat device and network in HACMP/ES V 5.x. This feature is new in V5.1,
and it provides another alternative for non-ip based heartbeats. The intent of this document is to
provide step-by-step directions as they are currently sketchy in the HACMP v5.1 pubs. This will
hopefully clarify several misconceptions that have been brought to my attention.
This example consists of a two-node cluster (nodes GT40 & SL55) with shared ESS vpath
devices. If more than two nodes exist in your cluster, you will need N number or non-ip
heartbeat networks. Where N represents the number of nodes in the cluster. (i.e. three node
cluster requires 3 non-ip heartbeat networks). This creates a heartbeat ring.
It’s worth noting that one should not confuse concurrent volume groups with concurrent resource
groups. And note, there is a difference between concurrent volume groups and enhanced
concurrent volume groups. A concurrent resource group is one which may be active on more
than one node at a type. A concurrent volume group also shares the characteristic that it may be
active on more than one node at a time. This is also true for an enhanced concurrent VG;
however, in a non-concurrent resource group, the enhanced concurrent VG, while it may be
active and not have a SCSI reserve residing on the disk, it’s data is only normally accessed by
one system at a time.

In this document, it is assumed that the shared storage devices are already made available and
configured to AIX, and that the proper levels of RSCT and HACMP are already installed. Since
utilizing enhanced-concurrent volume groups, it is also necessary to make sure that bos.clvm.enh
is installed. This is not normally installed as part of a HACMP installation via the installp
Disk Heartbeat Details
This provides the ability to use existing shared disks, regardless of disk type, to provide a serial
network like heartbeat path. A benefit of this is that one need not dedicate the integrated serial
ports for HACMP heartbeats (if supported on the subject systems) or purchase an 8-port
asynchronous adapter.
This feature utilizes a special area on the disk previously reserved for “Concurrent Capable”
volume groups (traditionally only for SSA disks). Since AIX 5.2 dropped support for the SSA
concurrent volume groups, this fit makes it available for use. This also means that the disk
chosen for serial heartbeat can be part of a data volume group. (Note Performance Concerns

The disk heart beating code went into the version of RSCT. Some recommended
APARs bring that to If you've got that level installed, and HACMP 5.1, you can use
disk heart beating. The relevant file to look for is /usr/sbin/rsct/bin/hats_diskhb_nim. Though it
is supported mainly through RSCT, we recommend AIX 5.2 when utilizing disk heartbeat.

To use disk heartbeats, no node can issue a SCSI reserve for the disk. This is because both nodes
using it for heart beating must be able to read and write to that disk. It is sufficient that the disk
be in an enhanced concurrent volume group to meet this requirement. (It should also be possible
to use a disk that is in no volume group for disk heart beating. RSCT certainly won't care; but
HACMP SMIT panels may not be particularly helpful in setting this up.)

Now, in HACMP 5.1 with AIX 5.1, enhanced concurrent mode volume groups can be used only
in concurrent (or "online on all available nodes") resource groups. This means that disk heart
beating is useful only to people running concurrent configurations, or who can allocate such a
volume group/disk (which is certainly possible, though perhaps an expensive approach). In other
words, at HACMP 5.1 and AIX 5.1, typical HACMP clusters (with a server and idle standby)
will require an additional concurrent resource group with a disk in an enhanced concurrent VG
dedicated for heartbeat use. At AIX 5.2, disk heartbeats can exist on an enhanced concurrent VG
that resides in a non-concurrent resource group. At AIX 5.2, one may also use the fast disk
takeover feature in non-concurrent resource groups with enhanced concurrent volume groups.
With HACMP 5.1 and AIX 5.2, enhanced concurrent mode volume groups can be used in serial
access configurations for fast disk takeover, along with disk heart beating. (AIX 5.2 requires
RSCT or later) That is, the facility becomes usable to the average customer, without
committment of additional resource, since disk heart beating can occur on a volume group used
for ordinary filesystem and logical volume activity.

Performance Concerns with Disk Heart Beating

Most modern disks take somewhere around 15 milliseconds to service an IO request, which
means that they can't do much more than 60 seeks per second. The sectors used for disk heart
beating are part of the VGDA, which is at the outer edge of the disk, and may not be near the
application data. This means that every time a disk heart beat is done, a seek will have to be
done. Disk heart beating will typically (with the default parameters) require four (4) seeks per
second. That is each of two nodes will write to the disk and read from the disk once/second, for a
total of 4 IOPS. So, if possible, a disk should be selected as a heart beat path that does not
normally do more than about 50 seeks per second. The filemon tool can be used to monitor the
seek activity on a disk.

In cases where a disk must be used for heart beating that already has a high seek rate, it may be
necessary to change the heart beat timing parameters to prevent long write delays from being
seen as a failure.

The above cautions as stated apply to JBOD configurations, and should be modified based on the
technology of the disk subsystem:
• If the disk used for heart beating is in a controller that provides large amounts of cache - such
as the ESS - the number of seeks per second can be much larger
• If the disk used for heart beating is part of a RAID set without a caching front end controller,
the disk may be able to support fewer seeks, due to the extra activity required by RAID
Pros & Cons of using Disk Heart Beating
1. No additional hardware needed.
2. Easier to span greater distances.
3. No loss in usable storage space and can use existing data volume groups.
4. Uses enhanced concurrent vgs which also allows for fast-disk takeover.

1. Must be aware of the devices diskhb uses and administer devices properly*
2. Lose the forced down option of stopping cluster services because of enhanced concurrent vg

*I have had a customer delete all their disk definitions and run cfgmgr again to clean up number
holes in their device definition list. When they did, obviously , the device names did not come
back in the same order as they were before. So the diskhb device assigned to HACMP, was no
longer valid as a different device was configured using the old device name and it was not part of
an enhanced concurrent vg. Hence diskhb no longer worked, and since the customer did not
monitor their cluster either, they were unaware that the diskhb no longer worked.

Configuring Disk Heartbeat

As mentioned previously, disk heartbeat utilizes enhanced-concurrent volume groups. If starting

with a new configuration of disks, you will want to create enhanced-concurrent volume groups,
either manually, or by utilizing C-SPOC. My example shows using C-SPOC which is the best
practice to use here.

If you plan to use an existing volume group for disk heartbeats that is not enhanced concurrent,
then you will have to convert them to such using the chvg command. We recommend that the
VG be active on only one node, and that the application not be running when making this change
run chvg –C vgname to change the VG to enhanced concurrent mode. Vary it off, then run
importvg –L vgname on the other node to make it aware that the vg is now enhanced concurrent
capable. If using this method, you can skip to the “Creating Disk Heartbeat Devices and
Network” section of this document.

Disk and VG Preparation

To be able to use C-SPOC successfully, it is required that some basic IP based topology already
exists, and that the storage devices have their PVIDs in both system’s ODMs. This can be
verified by running lspv on each system. If a PVID does not exist on each system, it is necessary
to run chdev -l -a pv=yes on each system. This will allow C-SPOC to match up the device(s) as
known shared storage devices.
In this example, vpath0 on GT40 is the same virtual disk as vpath3 on SL55.
Use C-SPOC to create an Enhanced Concurrent volume group. In the following example, since
vpath devices are being used, the following smit screen paths were used.
smitty cl_admin◊Go to HACMP Concurrent Logical Volume Management◊ Concurrent Volume
Groups◊ Create a Concurrent Volume Group with Data Path Devices and press Enter

Choose the appropriate nodes, and then choose the appropriate shared storage devices based on
pvids (vpath0 and vpath3 in this example). Choose a name for the VG , desired PP size, make
sure that Enhanced Concurrent Mode is set to true and press Enter. (enhconcvg in this example).
This will create the shared enhanced-concurrent vg needed for our disk heartbeat. .

It’s a good idea to verify via lspv once this has completed to make sure the device and vg is show
appropriately as follows:

GT40#/ lspv
vpath0 000a7f5af78e0cf4 enhconcvg

vpath3 000a7f5af78e0cf4 enhconcvg

Creating Disk Heartbeat Devices and Network

There are two different ways to do this. Since we have already created the enhanced concurrent
vg, we can use the discovery method (1) and let HA find it for us. Or we can do this manually
via the Pre-defined devices method (2). Following is an example of each.

1) Creating via Discover Method: (See Note)

Enter smitty hacmp◊Extended Configuration◊Discover HACMP-related Information from
Configured Nodes◊Press Enter

This will run automatically and create a clip_config file that contains the information it has
discovered. Once completed, go back to the Extended Configuration menu and chose:

Extended Topology Configuration◊Configure HACMP Communication Interfaces/Devices◊Add

Communication Interfaces/Devices◊Add Discovered Communication Interface and
Devices◊Communication Devices ◊Choose appropriate devices (ex. vpath0 and vpath3)

Select Point-to-Point Pair of Discovered Communication Devices to Add

Move cursor to desired item and press F7. Use arrow keys to scroll.
ONE OR MORE items can be selected.
Press Enter AFTER making all selections.
# Node Device Device Path Pvid
> nodeGT40 vpath0 /dev/vpath0 000a7f5af78
> nodeSL55 vpath3 /dev/vpath3 000a7f5af78

Note: Base HA 5.1 appears to have a problem when using the Discovered Devices this method.
If you get this error: "ERROR: Invalid node name 000a7f5af78e0cf4".
Then you will need apar IY51594. Otherwise you will have to create via the Pre-Defined
Devices method. Once corrected, this section will be completed
2) Creating via Pre-Defined Devices Method

When using this method, it is necessary to create a diskhb network first, then assign the disk-
node pair devices to the network. Create the diskhb network as follows:

smitty hacmp ◊ Extended Configuration ◊ Extended Topology Configuration ◊Configure

HACMP Networks ◊Add a Network to the HACMP cluster ◊ choose diskhb ◊ Enter desired
network name (ex. disknet1)--press Enter

smitty hacmp ◊ Extended Configuration ◊ Extended Topology Configuration ◊ Configure

HACMP Communication Interfaces/Devices ◊ Add Communication Interfaces/Devices◊ Add
Pre-Defined Communication Interfaces and Devices ◊
Communication Devices ◊ Choose your diskhb Network Name ◊

Add a Communication Device

Type or select values in entry fields.

Press Enter AFTER making all desired changes.

[Entry Fields]
* Device Name [GT40_hboverdisk]
* Network Type diskhb
* Network Name disknet1
* Device Path [/dev/vpath0]
* Node Name [GT40]

For Device Name, that is a unique name you can chose. It will show up in your topology under
this name, much like serial heartbeat and ttys have in the past.

For the Device Path, you want to put in /dev/. Then choose the corresponding node for this
device and device name (ex. GT40). Then press Enter.

You will repeat this process for the other node (ex. SL55) and the other device (vpath3). This
will complete both devices for the diskhb network.

Testing Disk Heartbeat Connectivity

Once the device and network definitions have been created, it is a good idea to test it and make
sure communications is working properly. If the volume group is varied on in normal mode on
one of the nodes, the test will probably not work.

/usr/sbin/rsct/bin/dhb_read is used to test the validity of a diskhb connection. The usage of

dhb_read is as follows:

dhb_read -p devicename //dump diskhb sector contents

dhb_read -p devicename -r //receive data over diskhb network
dhb_read -p devicename -t //transmit data over diskhb network

To test that disknet1, in the example configuration, can communicate from nodeB(ex. SL55) to
nodeA (ex. GT40), you would run the following commands:

On nodeA, enter:

dhb_read -p rvpath0 -r

On nodeB, enter:

dhb_read -p rvpath3 -t

Note: That the device name is raw device as designated with the “r” proceeding the device name.

If the link from nodeB to nodeA is operational, both nodes will display:
Link operating normally.

You can run this again and swap which node transmits and which one receives. To make the
network active, it is necessary to sync up the cluster. Since the volume group has not been added
to the resource group, we will sync up once instead of twice.

Add Shared Disk as a Shared Resource

In most cases you would have your diskhb device on a shared data vg. It is necessary to add that
vg into your resource group and synchronize the cluster.

smitty hacmp◊ Extended Configuration◊ Extended Resource Configuration > Extended Resource
Group Configuration◊ Change/Show Resources and Attributes for a Resource Group◊ and press

Choose the appropriate resource group, enter the new vg (enhconcvg) into the volume group list
and press Enter.

Return to the top of the Extended Configuration menu and synchronize the cluster.

Monitor Disk Heartbeat

Once the cluster is up and running, you can monitor the activity of the disk (actually all)
heartbeats via lssrc -ls topsvcs. An example of the output follows:

Subsystem Group PID Status

topsvcs topsvcs 32108 active

Network Name Indx Defd Mbrs St Adapter ID Group ID

disknet1 [ 3] 2 2 S
disknet1 [ 3] rvpath3 0x86cd1b02 0x86cd1b4f
HB Interval = 2 secs. Sensitivity = 4 missed beats
Missed HBs: Total: 0 Current group: 0
Packets sent : 229 ICMP 0 Errors: 0 No mbuf: 0
Packets received: 217 ICMP 0 Dropped: 0
NIM's PID: 28724

Be aware that there is a grace period for heartbeats to start processing. This is normally around
60 seconds. So if you run this command quickly after starting the cluster, you may not see
anything at all until heartbeat processing is started after the grace period time has elapsed.

Steps 1 to 17 to configure HACMP

Steps to configure HACMP:

1. Install the nodes, make sure the redundancy is maintained for power supplies, n/w and
fiber n/ws. Then Install AIX on the nodes.
2. Install all the HACMP filesets except HAview and HATivoli.
Install all the RSCT filesets from the AIX base CD.
Make sure that the AIX, HACMP patches and server code are at the latest level (ideally
4. Check for fileset bos.clvm to be present on both the nodes. This is required to make the
VGs enhanced concurrent capable.
5. V.IMP: Reboot both the nodes after installing the HACMP filesets.
6. Configure shared storage on both the nodes. Also in case of a disk heartbeat, assign a
1GB shared storage LUN on both nodes.
7. Create the required VGs only on the first node. The VGs can be either normal VGs or
Enhanced concurrent VGs. Assign particular major number to each VGs while creating
the VGs. Record the major no. information.
To check the Majar no. use the command:
ls –lrt /dev grep
Mount automatically at system restart should be set to NO.
8. Varyon the VGs that was just created.
9. V.IMP: Create log LV on each VG first before creating any new LV. Give a unique
name to logLV.
Destroy the content of logLV by: logform /dev/loglvname
Repeat this step for all VGs that were created.
10. Create all the necessary LVs on each VG.
11. Create all the necessary file systems on each LV created… can create mount pts
as per the requirement of the customer,
Mount automatically at system restart should be set to NO.
12. umount all the filesystems and varyoff all the VGs.

13. chvg –an ---_ All VGs will be set to do not mount automatically at
System restart.
14. Go to node 2 and run cfgmgr –v to import the shared volumes.
15. Import all the VGs on node 2
use smitty importvg -----_ import with the same major number as assigned on node
16. Run chvg –an for all VGs on node 2.
17. V.IMP: Identify the boot1, boot2, service ip and persistent ip for both the nodes
and make the entry in the /etc/hosts.

Step 19 Define Cluster Nodes

19. Define the cluster nodes. #smitty hacmp -> Extended Configuration ->
Extended topology configuration -> Configure an HACMP node - > Add a node to an
HACMP cluster Define both the nodes on after the other.
Step20 Discover HACMP config for Network settings

22. Discover HACMP config: This will import for both nodes all the node info, boot ips,
service ips from the /etc/hosts
smitty hacmp -> Extended configurations -> Discover hacmp related information

Step21 Adding Communication interface

Add HACMP communication interfaces. (Ether interfaces.)
smitty hacmp -> Extended Configuration -> Extended Topology Configuration ->
Configure HACMP networks -> Add a network to the HACMP cluster.
Select ether and Press enter.
Then select diskhb and Press enter. Diskhb is your non-tcpip heartbeat.

step 22 Adding device for Disk Heart Beat

Include the interfaces/devices in the ether n/w and diskhb already defined.
smitty hacmp -> Extended Configuration -> Extended Topology Configuration ->
Configure HACMP communication interfaces/devices -> Add communication

step23 Adding boot IP & Disk heart beat information

Include all the four boot ips (2 for each nodes) in this ether interface already defined.Then
include the disk for heartbeat on both the nodes in the diskhb already defined

step 24 Adding persistent IP

Add the persistent IPs:

smitty hacmp -> Extended Configuration -> Extended Topology Configuration ->
Configure HACMP persistent nodes IP label/Addresses

step 25 Adding Persistent IP labels

Add a persistent ip label for both nodes.

step 26 Defining IP labels

Define the service IP labels for both nodes.
smitty hacmp -> Extended Configuration -> Extended Resource Configuration ->
HACMP extended resource configuration -> Configure HACMP service IP label

step 27 Adding Resource Group

Add Resource Groups:

smitty hacmp -> Extended Configuration -> Extended Resource Configuration ->
HACMP extended resource group configuration
Continue similarly for all the resource groups.
The node selected first while defining the resource group will be the primary owner of
that resource group. The node after that is secondary node.
Make sure you set primary node correctly for each resource group. Also set the failover/fallback
policies as per the requirement of the setup

step 28 Setting attributes of Resource group

Set attributes of the resource groups already defined:

Here you have to actually assign the resources to the resource groups.
smitty hacmp -> Extended Configuration -> Extended Resource Configuration ->
HACMP extended resource group configuration

step 29 Adding IP label & RG owned by Node

Add the service IP label for the owner node and also the VGs owned by the owner node
Of this resource group.

Continue similarly for all the resource groups.

step 30 & 31 Synchronize & start Cluster

Synchronize the cluster:

This will sync the info from one node to second node.
Smitty cl_sync

That’s it. Now you are ready to start the cluster.

Smitty clstart

You can start the cluster together on both nodes or start individually on each node.

You can start the cluster together on both nodes or start individually on each node.

Step 32 & 33 Check for cluster Stabilize & VG varied on

Wait for the cluster to stabilize. You can check when the cluster is up by following
a. netstat –i
b. ifconfig –a : look-out for service ip. It will show on each node if the cluster is up.

Check whether the VGs under cluster’s RGs are varied-ON and the filesystems in the
VGs are mounted after the cluster start.

Here test1vg and test2vg are VGs which are varied-ON when the cluster is started and
Filesystems /test2 and /test3 are mounted when the cluster starts.
/test2 and /test3 are in test2vg which is part of the RG which is owned by this node.
32. Perform all the tests such as resource take-over, node failure, n/w failure and verify
the cluster before releasing the system to the customer.