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Support Policies for RHEL High Availability Clusters - Virtualization Platforms

Updated -



Red Hat Enterprise Linux (RHEL) High Availability and Resilient Storage clusters may be deployed within virtual machines running on various virtualization platforms, and may also manage and maintain high availability of certain types of virtual machines running as resources. This document describes the virtualization platforms that are supported by Red Hat for use in these contexts.

Applicable Environments

  • Red Hat Enterprise Linux (RHEL) 6 or 7 with the High Availability Add-On
  • A cluster deployment in which the targeted use case is to either:
    • Manage one or more virtual machines as a highly available resource, or
    • Operate one or more virtual machines as a node in the cluster.

Useful References and Guides

High Availability and Virtualization Use Cases

There are two use cases for deployment of virtualization in conjunction with the RHEL High Availability or Resilient Storage Add-On: VMs as highly available resources and guest clusters.

Policies for Guest Clusters

RHEL KVM with libvirt

The following KVM/libvirt virtual machine configurations are supported by Red Hat for use as High Availability cluster nodes:

Hypervisor OS VM OS Supported Fencing Mechanisms
RHEL 6 or 7 RHEL 6 or 7


  • Physical Host Mixing is supported in clusters with member nodes that run on the supported KVM/libvirt virtualization platforms listed above.

Red Hat Enterprise Virtualization (RHEV)

Consult the following policies applicable to RHEV virtual machines:


Red Hat does not support the RHEL High Availability or Resilient Storage Add Ons running within Openstack VMs. This is true for Red Hat Openstack Platform (RH-OSP) and for other Openstack deployments.

VMware vSphere / ESXi

Consult the following policies applicable to VMware platforms:

IBM z Systems

Please contact Red Hat Support or your account representatives for information on running RHEL High Availability on IBM z Systems.


Red Hat does not support the RHEL High Availability or Resilient Storage Add Ons on the Hyper-V platform.

Amazon EC2, Microsoft Azure, or Other Hosted Cloud Providers

Red Hat does not support the RHEL High Availability or Resilient Storage Add Ons on these hosted cloud platforms.


Red Hat does not support the RHEL High Availability or Resilient Storage Add Ons on Xen platforms.

Policies for VMs as Highly Available Resources

The following VM configurations are supported as Highly Available resources managed by a RHEL High Availability cluster. Other virtual machine types or configurations may function, but Red Hat cannot guarantee they will be free from issues and may be unable to assist in the event of any issues arising.

Hypervisor Type Guest OS Type
RHEL 6 or RHEL 7 libvirt/KVM Hosts Any guest OS fully supported by libvirt/KVM


  • In these configurations, the VM resources would be stored on shared block devices such as clustered LVM Volumes, or on disk images stored on shared file systems such as NFS, GFS, GFS2.


It appears 5.9 has support for vmdk backed images for use with gfs2 now: https://bugzilla.redhat.com/show_bug.cgi?id=878998 (also in the 5.9 technical release notes)

Also the upcoming 6.4 release should contain support as well: https://access.redhat.com/knowledge/solutions/158873

What about the multicast problem's? I have two RHEL Cluster based on GFS2 that experience problems in join time when are in different ESX hosts. When they resides in the same ESX host, is all right.
There are no recomendations about the ESX/ESXi network configuration for support guest RHEL Cluster's?

Hi, is Hyperv-V still unsupported?

Yes, the information in the table remains accurate.

Is there an updated Support Matrix for Guest Clusters and ESX 5.5?

This matrix is up-to-date. vSphere/ESXi 5.5 is not currently a supported platform for High Availability clusters.

Hi, only Virtual Disk File (VMDK) is supported in RHEL 6.4+ ?

VMDK is supported only in 6.4 and later. The row above that shows a number of other options (Raw Device Mapping, iSCSI) that are supported in 6.2 and later.

Is there an updated Support Matrix for 3.2, 3.3, 3.4?
or Red Hat Enterprise Virtualization for Servers 2.2+ in Environment section. Is it meaning that we supported all version of RHEV higher than 2.2?

The document has been updated to reflect that RHEL 7 is a supported release for fence_vmware_soap + vCenter/ESXi 5.5.

For those that have been asking about support for RHEL High Availability on VMWare ESXi/vSphere 5.5, please note that the document has been updated to reflect that it is supported in RHEL 5 Update 11, RHEL 6 Update 6, and RHEL 7, with the listed requirements and limitations. If you have any questions, please feel free to ask here or open a support case.


we have upgrade the vcentre/esci 5.1 to 5.5 after that we are not able to fenced the node . plz help

There are a number of reasons why fencing may have failed, and there are no obvious reasons why an upgrade from 5.1 to 5.5 would affect that. If you'd like to open a support case, we could request more specific information from your environment that would help us identify the cause of this.

As for generic recommendations, I would start by testing the agent from the command line to see if there are any more specific errors:

How to test fence devices and fencing configuration in a RHEL 5, 6, or 7 High Availability cluster?

If it works on the command-line but not when executed automatically by the cluster, then you'll want to check that your configuration settings match what was passed on the command line.

John Ruemker, RHCA
Senior Software Maintenance Engineer
Global Support Services
Red Hat, Inc.

Can anyone provide best practices for guest clustering with redhat on top of vmware?

VMDK vs RDM for example or iSCSI?

We're building this environment and the thought was VMDK to "Keep It Simple" and supportable. My only concern is the reliance of fencing at that point on VMWare (vCenter and other management APIs) and coordinating upgrading of VMWare infrastructures or outages in the VMWare management suite (vCenter for example) and how that may negatively impact the cluster.

Any insight or opinion is appreciated.


Hi Mike,

The multi-writer option for VMDK is a fine route. See: https://access.redhat.com/solutions/158873 We test all three storage options and to date have not run into issues relating to vSphere upgrades. Same can be said for the fencing agent (fence_vmware_soap), no issues relating to upgrades in vSphere.

Regarding "coordinating upgrading of VMWare infrastructures or outages in the VMWare management suite": Keep in mind we do not support live migration for HA. If your outage plan requires guest relocation, you will need to shutdown HA on that guest.

Regards, Chris Mackowski RHEL HA Quality Engineering

Is sopported RHEV-M running on Hyper V?

This article only comments on the supportability of the High Availability and Resilient Storage products running in conjunction with various virtual platforms. This does not cover the support limitations or requirements for RHEV or RHEV-M itself.

I do not know the answer to your question specifically, seeing as this content is more focused on High Availability and that is my specialty. If you can't find other content in the Customer Portal that answers your question, please do feel free to open a support case with us so we can provide a more complete answer.

John Ruemker, RHCA
Principal Software Maintenance Engineer
Red Hat Global Support Services

Hi, there is no support to use on ibm power 8 using lpar?

Is there any plan and ETA to certify vSphere 6.5 , please?

No ETA or official plan we can share. Please communicate your interest in this release to Red Hat Support so they can assist.

hello John

Is GFS2 officially supported under Vmware VSAN ? Please advice

All readers, please note: We have reorganized our support policies in this area to have a distinct article covering each individual platform. These are listed at the following location, along with the rest of Red Hat's collection of support policies relating to High Availability:


Please consult that list and the individual documents for Red Hats support policies.

Thanks, John