Frequently Asked Questions

Q: Where can I get Pacemaker?

A: Pacemaker ships as part of most modern distributions, so you can usually just launch your favorite package manager on:

  • openSUSE and SUSE Linux Enterprise Server (SLES)
  • Fedora and derivatives such as Red Hat Enterprise Linux (RHEL) and CentOS
  • Debian and derivatives such as Ubuntu (with the exception of Debian 8 "jessie", for which see the Debian-HA team for details)
  • Gentoo

If all else fails, you can try installing from source.

Q: Is there any documentation?

A: Yes. You can find the set relevant to your version in our documentation index.

Q: Where should I ask questions?

A: Often basic questions can be answered on irc, but sending them to the mailing list is always a good idea so that everyone can benefit from the answer.

Q: Do I need shared storage?

A: No. We can help manage it if you have some, but Pacemaker itself has no need for shared storage.

Q: Which cluster filesystems does Pacemaker support?

A: Pacemaker supports the popular OCFS2 and GFS2 filesystems. As you'd expect, you can use them on top of real disks or network block devices like DRBD.

Q: What kind of applications can I manage with Pacemaker?

A: Pacemaker is application agnostic, meaning anything that can be scripted can be made highly available - provided the script conforms to one of the supported standards: LSB, OCF, Systemd, or Upstart.

Q: Can I use Pacemaker with Heartbeat?

A: Yes. Pacemaker started off life as part of the Heartbeat project and continues to support it as an alternative to Corosync. See this documentation for more details

Q: Can I use Pacemaker with CMAN?

A: Yes. Pacemaker added support for CMAN v3 in version 1.1.5 to better integrate with distros that have traditionally shipped and/or supported the RHCS cluster stack instead of Pacemaker. This is particularly relevant for those looking to use GFS2 or OCFS2. See the documentation for more details

Q: Can I use Pacemaker with Corosync 1.x?

A: Yes. You will need to configure Corosync to load Pacemaker's custom plugin to provide the membership and quorum information we require. See the documentation for more details.

Q: Can I use Pacemaker with Corosync 2.x?

A: Yes. Pacemaker can obtain the membership and quorum information it requires directly from Corosync in this configuration. See the documentation for more details.

Q: Do I need a fencing device?

A: Yes. Fencing is the only 100% reliable way to ensure the integrity of your data and that applications are only active on one host. Although Pacemaker is technically able to function without Fencing, there are a good reasons SUSE and Red Hat will not support such a configuration.

Q: Do I need to know XML to configure Pacemaker?

A: No. Although Pacemaker uses XML as its native configuration format, there exist 2 CLIs and at least 4 GUIs that present the configuration in a human friendly format.

Q: How do I synchronize the cluster configuration?

A: Any changes to Pacemaker's configuration are automatically replicated to other machines. The configuration is also versioned, so any offline machines will be updated when they return.

Q: Should I choose pcs or crmsh?

A: Arguably the best advice is to use whichever one comes with your distro. This is the one that will be tailored to that environment, receive regular bugfixes and feature in the documentation.

Of course, for years people have been side-loading all of Pacemaker onto enterprise distros that didn't ship it, so doing the same for just a configuration tool should be easy if your favorite distro does not ship your favorite tool.

Q: What if my question isn't here?

A: See the getting help section and let us know!