Adding a Node to a SQL Server 2005 Failover Cluster

Setting up multi-node clustered SQL instances from scratch is common practice for companies that want to implement high availability, but adding a new node to an existing clustered SQL instance that has been running for a while may have a few sticking points, especially for a SQL 2005 instance. In this series, I will walk through how to add new node for existing clustered SQL Server instance for SQL 2005 environments, and applying a post-configuration service pack.

Step by step procedure for adding a node

Below, I detail step by step instructions for how to add a node and then apply a service pack or hot fix afterward.

Step 1: Log onto the primary node for the existing SQL 2005 Clustered instance. The primary node is the clustered node where your SQL 2005 clustered instance is currently running.

Step 2: It’s always advisable to run the setup procedure by a service account with administrative privilege on all the clustered nodes. To launch Add or Remove Programs in Control Panel with a service account, follow these steps:

1.       Navigate down to C:\WINDOWS\system32

2.       Look for appwiz.cpl


3.       Right click on appwiz.cpl, select click RunAs, then specify service account “User Name” and “Password” and click OK



Step 3: Once you have seen the Add or Remove Program window below, it means you have successfully launch it with the designated domain account.


Step 4:  If your OS is 64 bit, look for “Microsoft SQL Server 2004 (64-bit),” and then click Change. The wizard for “Microsoft SQL Server 2005 Maintenance” will start as below (I have masked the instance name for Reporting Services and Database Engine for confidentiality of the company) In your environment, you should expect to see the instance name for the masked portion. You can also see common components that were already installed on the server.


Step 5: If you have multiple SQL 2005 instances then you will need to perform one instance at a time. Here I only have one SQL 2005 clustered instance, so I selected the instance by clicking the radio button and then clicking Next.

Step 6: In the Feature Maintenance page, select a component to change; Database Engine (Clustered) is selected by default. Click Next, then the SQL Server 2005 System Configuration Checker starts.



After few seconds, the Welcome page for “Microsoft SQL Server installation Wizard” will pop up, as below.


Step 7: Simply click Next to proceed


Step 8: Installation wizard will perform system check and make sure it can proceed without Error or critical warning.  Review all the warning and error message provided by System Configuration Checker. Address any threatening warning and error if needed, then re-launch from Step 2.

Click Next once system configuration check is completed.


Step 9:  in the Change or Remove Instance page, select Maintain the Virtual Server.


Step  10: On the Cluster Node Configuration page. Here is where you will see the ActiveNode, PassiveNode and the new node you’d like to add. Since the installation wizard needs to be launched from the active node for the clustered instance, you will see the machine you logged onto appears on “Required node.” For the existing passive node for the clustered instance, the server name will appear on “Selected nodes,” and the new node you are working on to add into the clustered instance will appear on “Available nodes.”

Simply click Add to move the available node to selected nodes. You can now see both Passive node and the new node being listed under “Selected nodes,” like the below screenshot.


Click Next to proceed.


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Claire Hsu
Claire Hsu
Claire Hsu has nearly 10 years' experience in database administration, architecture, engineering and development, ranging from SQL 7.0, 2000, 2005 and 2008 environments. Currently, she is a senior DBA for a global infrastructure team in an investment management firm located in New York City. She is certified in MCP, OCP 10G, MCTS and MCITP on SQL Server 2005, and has a master's in Electrical Engineering from University of Massachusetts, Amherst. Her focus as DBA includes project management, handling critical projects like server upgrades, migration, high availability features deployment, performance tuning, monitoring, ensuring business continuity, and client facing and engineering automated processes.

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