When you edit the vCenter HA cluster configuration, you can deactivate or activate the cluster, place the cluster in maintenance mode, or remove the cluster.

The operating mode of a vCenter Server controls the failover capabilities and state replication in a vCenter HA cluster.

A vCenter HA cluster can operate in one of the following modes.

Table 1. vCenter HA Cluster Modes of Operation
Mode Automatic Failover Manual Failover Replication
Enabled Yes Yes Yes This default mode of operation protects the vCenter Server from hardware and software failures by performing automatic failover.
Maintenance No Yes Yes Used for some maintenance tasks. For other tasks, you have to deactivate vCenter HA.
Disabled No No No If the Passive or Witness nodes are lost or recovering from a failure, a vCenter HA configuration can be deactivated. The Active node continues as a standalone vCenter Server.

Note: If the cluster is operating in either Maintenance or Disabled mode, an Active node can continue serving client requests even if the Passive and Witness nodes are lost or unreachable.


Verify that the vCenter HA cluster is deployed and contains the Active, Passive, and Witness nodes.


  1. Log in to the Active node vCenter Server with the vSphere Client and click Configure.
  2. Under Settings select vCenter HA and click Edit.
  3. Select one of the options.
    Option Result
    Enable vCenter HA Activates replication between the Active and Passive nodes. If the cluster is in a healthy state, your Active node is protected by automatic failover from the Passive node.
    Maintenance Mode In maintenance mode, replication still occurs between the Active and Passive nodes. However, automatic failover is deactivated.
    Disable vCenter HA Deactivates replication and failover. Keeps the configuration of the cluster. You can later activate vCenter HA again.
    Remove vCenter HA cluster Removes the cluster. Replication and failover no longer are provided. The Active node continues to operate as a standalone vCenter Server. See Remove a vCenter HA Configuration for details.
  4. Click OK.