File Server Failover Cluster Part 1 - ISCSI Target Server

Hi Folks,

In these article series, we will create File Server Failover Cluster. Because I don't have a SAN storage in my lab environment, first I need to install and configure ISCSI Target on Windows Server 2019.  When iSCSI Target Server is enabled, a computer running the Windows Server operating system becomes a network-accessible block storage device. After installing the role, we will configure the iSCSI target and create a Quorum Disk and a Cluster Shared Volume.


All servers are joined to the domain. Cluster Nodes has 3 and iSCSI Target has 2 NICs. IP addressing information is below. 


Start Server Manager > Add Roles and Features> Select Role Based or feature based Installation


Select iSCSI Target Server. Then click, Add Features confirmation when it pops up


Click Next 


Click Install 


And Click Close. 



Server Manager >Click File and Storage Services


Select iSCSI on the left Menu and click "To create an iSCSI virtual disk..." link.


On iSCSITarget Server I have a 200GB Disk that I can use as my storage for iscsi virtual disks.


 Now I am creating the first virtual disk for Quorum (Disk Witness). A cluster quorum disk is the storage medium on which the configuration database is stored for a cluster computing network. The quorum disk comprises a shared block device that allows concurrent read/write access by all nodes in a cluster.


5GB will be enough for Quorum Disk


I dont have any iSCSI target so I have to create at least one now.


Name it as you'd like


Add the Cluster Nodes by clicking Add Button. Then click Browse and type computer name. This will add the servers by their IQN addresses. If you prefer you can add Nodes by their IP addresses, too.


You can enable or just skip CHAP authentication



Virtual disk and iscsi target is created.


I need another Virtual disk. This disk will simply store the actual data for file server and NTFS shares.




Give a definitive name for the VD 


Specify the disk capacity for Data Disk


You can either use the existing iscsi target or create a new one. I will just add a new iscsi target. 


Name iSCSI target


Add cluster nodes' ip addresses




Now both Virtuald disks and iSCSI targets are ready. 









Connecting Nodes to iSCSI Target:

Log on to FileServer01 > Server Manager> Tools > iSCSI Initiator


 Click Yes to start iSCSI service.


Firstly, we need to Discover the Target Portal. To do that; 

Click Discovery Tab > Discovery Portal > Enter the iSCSI Target's IP address for iSCSI network > Click Advanced



 Select Microsoft iSCSI Initiator as Local Adapter

As Initiator IP, Select this server's iSCSI network ip address


 Click OK Twice. Now This server can see both Virtual Disks under the Target Tab. Select the first target and Click Connect > Advanced



Local Adapter: MS iSCSI Initiator

Initiator IP: Node1's ip address (iSCSI network)

Target Portal IP: iSCSI Target's ip address (iSCSI network)


Go ahead and do the same procedure for the second target. Now both disks are connected.



We can now Log on to FileServer02 and do the same procedure to establish the connection between Node2 and iSCSI initiator. I will just skip this part. You can just follow the above steps that starts from "Connecting Nodes to iSCSI Target".


 After you completed the procedure on Node2 (FileServer02), you can see the disks are added on both Cluster Nodes (FileServer01 and FileServer02).


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