All vSphere MSCS configurations require certain hardware and software components.

The following table lists hardware and software requirements that apply to all vSphere MSCS configurations.

Table 1. Clustering Requirements
Component Requirement
Virtual SCSI adapter

LSI Logic Parallel for Windows Server 2003.

LSI Logic SAS for Windows Server 2008 SP2 and above.

VMware Paravirtual for Windows Server 2008 SP2 and above.

Operating system Windows Server 2003 SP1 and SP2, Windows Server 2008 SP2 above releases. For supported guest operating systems see Table 4.
Virtual NIC
VMXNET3 is required. You must enable in-guest Windows Receive Side Scaling (RSS) on the virtual NIC.
Note: Drivers, improvements and updates to the VMXNET3 virtual NIC are delivered through VMware Tools. Upgrade to the latest version of VMware Tools on any VM using the VMXNET3 virtual NIC.
I/O timeout

Set to 60 seconds or more. Modify HKEY_LOCAL_MACHINE\System\CurrentControlSet\Services\Disk\TimeOutValue.

The system might reset this I/O timeout value if you re-create a cluster. You must reset the value in that case.

Disk format Select Thick Provision to create disks in eagerzeroedthick format.
Disk and networking setup Add networking before disks.
Number of nodes

Windows Server 2003 SP1 and SP2 : two-node clustering

Windows Server 2008 SP2 and above: up to five-node clustering

For supported guest operating systems see Table 4.

NTP server Synchronize domain controllers and cluster nodes with a common NTP server, and disable host-based time synchronization when using clustering in the guest.