Product Documentation

Configuring Clustering

The primary tasks in setting up NetScaler Gateway clustering are:

  1. Decide which NetScaler Gateway appliance or VM will be the configuration coordinator, and create a cluster instance on that system (if one is not already present).
  2. Join NetScaler Gateway systems to the cluster as nodes.
  3. Create a node group on the cluster instance, with the STICKY option set.
  4. Bind a single cluster node to the cluster node group.
  5. Configure a NetScaler Gateway virtual server on the configuration coordinator and bind it to cluster node group.

Note that multiple methods are available for configuring a NetScaler cluster. The following set of tasks uses the most direct method available in the configuration utility.

To create a NetScaler Gateway cluster instance by using the configuration utility

Once you have all of the deployment details in order, begin the configuration on the NetScaler Gateway that will be the configuration coordinator.

Caution: Creating the cluster instance clears the configuration. If you need to save the existing system configuration for reference, archive a copy before continuing with the cluster configuration. Any existing settings to be used in the cluster can be reapplied on the configuration coordinator after the cluster is established.

  1. Log on to the NetScaler configuration utility at the NSIP address.
  2. Expand the System node, then the Cluster subnode.
  3. In the details pane, click Manage Cluster.
  4. In the Cluster Configuration dialog box, set the parameters required to create the cluster.
    1. Enter a Cluster instance ID. This is the numeric identifier for the cluster instance. The default value is 1 but you can set it to any number from 1 to 16.
    2. Enter the Cluster IP address. This will be the cluster’s configuration coordinator IP address, which is the management IP address for the cluster.
    3. Select the preferred Backplane interface. This is this NetScaler Gateway interface to use for communication among the cluster nodes.
  5. Click Create.
  6. At the prompt to confirm system reboot, click Yes.
  7. Wait for system to restart. Once available, log on to the configuration utility at the Cluster IP address configured in step 4b.
  8. Note, in the System Information detail pane, that the local Node at the NSIP address is reported as configuration coordinator. This confirms that the base cluster instance is now operating.

The local node of the configuration coordinator is automatically added to the cluster. More nodes can be added in the following task.

Adding Nodes to a NetScaler Gateway Cluster

Once the cluster instance has been established, you can begin to add other NetScaler Gateway nodes to the cluster.

To add more NetScaler Gateway systems to the cluster, you can use the configuration utility to remotely issue the cluster-node-creation and join-cluster settings.

Note: Adding nodes to the cluster should be completed before configuring your NetScaler Gateway setup. This way, you will not have to repeat the NetScaler Gateway configuration if something goes wrong with your cluster configuration and you want to remove the cluster and begin again.

  1. Log on to the NetScaler configuration utility at the Cluster IP address.
  2. Expand the System node, then the Cluster subnode.
  3. In the details pane, click Manage Cluster.
  4. In the Cluster Nodes details pane, click Add.
  5. In the Create Cluster Node pane, enter a unique Node id for this node.
  6. Enter the NetScaler IP address of the system to add as a cluster node.
  7. In the Cluster Node credentials pane, enter the NetScaler Gateway username and password for the remote NetScaler Gateway system.
  8. In the Configuration Coordinator credentials pane, enter the password for the local authorized user.
  9. Click Create.
  10. When prompted, click YES to allow the system configuration to be saved and perform a warm reboot of the remote NetScaler Gateway.

Repeat steps 4 through 9 for each additional remote NetScaler Gateway system that you want to configure as a cluster node.

Verify that the cluster nodes are included in the Active Node List in the Cluster Nodes detail pane. If any nodes are missing, repeat steps 4 through 10 until all of the necessary nodes are listed.

Creating a Cluster Node Group

Once the cluster nodes have been added, a cluster node group can be created.

  1. Log on to the NetScaler configuration utility at the Cluster IP address.
  2. Expand the System node, then the Cluster subnode.
  3. Click Node Groups.
  4. In the details pane, click Add.
  5. Enter a name for the cluster node group.
  6. Select the Sticky option. This is required to support the NetScaler Gateway virtual server type.
  7. Click Continue.

The cluster node group is now established. Before leaving this area of the configuration utility, you can bind the local NetScaler Gateway node to the new cluster node group. This will be the only node bound to the cluster group.

Bind the local cluster node to the cluster node group

Because a NetScaler Gateway cluster configuration is a spotted type, only one node can be bound to the node group. The following procedure binds the local node on the configuration coordinator to the node group, but any node in the cluster can be used for this binding.

  1. In the Advanced pane, expand Cluster Nodes.
  2. In the middle Cluster Nodes pane, select No Cluster Node.
  3. On the Cluster Node configuration screen, click Bind.
  4. Select the local node represented by the NSIP address for this NetScaler Gateway system.
  5. Click Insert.
  6. Click OK.
  7. Click Done.

The cluster is now populated and ready to share a NetScaler Gateway virtual server as configured by the following task.

Binding a NetScaler Gateway Virtual Server to the Cluster Node Group

With a cluster established, you can proceed to build the NetScaler Gateway configuration the cluster deployment is intended to serve. To tie the configuration to the cluster, you need to create the NetScaler Gateway virtual server and bind it to a cluster node group that is set to type Sticky. After the virtual server is bound to the cluster node group, you can continue to configure the NetScaler Gateway.

If multiple NetScaler Gateway virtual servers are configured, those must be bound to the cluster node group as well.

Note: If NetScaler Gateway virtual servers have not yet been configured, you might have to first enable the NetScaler Gateway and Authentication, Authorization and Auditing features first under System > Settings > Configure Basic Features.

  1. Log on to the NetScaler configuration utility at the Cluster IP address.
  2. Expand the System node, then the Cluster subnode.
  3. Click Node Groups.
  4. In the Node Group pane, select the desired node group name, and then click Edit.
  5. In the Advanced pane on the right, expand the Virtual Servers option, and then click the + icon to add a virtual server.
  6. Choose the VPN Virtual Server type, and then click Continue.
  7. Click Bind.
  8. If the needed virtual server is listed, select it, then click Insert, and then click OK.
  9. If you have to create a new virtual server, click Add. Proceed through the NetScaler Virtual Server configuration. Minimally, all that is needed is to create the virtual server so that it can be bound to the cluster node group.
  10. Once the virtual server is available in the NetScaler Gateway Virtual Servers list, select it, and then click Insert.
  11. Click OK.
  12. Click Done.

Note: If multiple NetScaler Gateway virtual servers are configured, those must be bound to the cluster node group as well using this same method.