SQL Server Failover Cluster – Initiating Manual Failover

Hi Friends,

Continuing my series of blog posts on SQL Server Failover Cluster, today I want to quickly show how can you initiate a manual failover of SQL Server service?

Connect to Failover Cluster Manager (Server Manager -> Features -> Failover Cluster Manager)

Expand Services and Applications & select SQL Server service. You should  be able to see the current owner of the service. In my example below, node1 owns the service.


Right click the service and click on the options as shown in the image…



You will be prompted to confirm. Select to Move..


Within a few seconds (of course, in real production environment the time factor may be different), you should see a failover to node 2, which can be verified as done previously.





About Amit Bansal

Amit Bansal is always brainstorming around SQL Server. Despite working with SQL since 1997, he is amazed that he keeps learning new things every single day. SQL Server is AB's first love, and his wife does not mind that. He tries to share as much and spreads the SQL goodness. Internals and Performance Tuning excites him, and also gives him sleepless nights at times, simply because he is not a genius, but quite a hard worker and does not give up. It has been a long and exciting journey since 1997, you can read here: http://sqlmaestros.com/amit-bansal/ He is on Twitter: https://www.twitter.com/A_Bansal

View all posts by Amit Bansal →

7 Comments on “SQL Server Failover Cluster – Initiating Manual Failover”

  1. Further to add, Failover Cluster Manager doesn’t allow manual failover of Cluster Group thru GUI unlike Windows 2003 cluster administrator. This is intentionally done to prevent accidental failovers of Cluster Group by inexperienced Admins

    To failover cluster group we need to use command line cluster utility using the following command

    cluster group “Cluster Group” MOVETO:<>

  2. You can also use the PowerShell cmdlets – Move-ClusterGroup

    Move-ClusterGroup “SQL Server (MSSQLSERVER)” -Node WinNode2

  3. A minor note: a manual failover behaves completely different from a fail over that happens in production, when the active node just happens to fail, for whatever reason, especially when it comes to SQL Server.

    As an exercise, create a DB, say, 20 GB and see it for yourself – just check in the SQL Server logs how fast the database is online.

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published.