MSCS Welcome

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Welcome to the Microsoft® Cluster Server Administrator's Guide. This welcome includes:

  • Introducing Microsoft Cluster Server 

  • Finding Information About MSCS 

  • Online Documentation

  • The Microsoft World Wide Web Site 

Introducing MS Cluster Server

Microsoft Cluster Server (MSCS) software provides a clustering technology that keeps server-based applications highly available, regardless of individual component failures. MSCS version 1.0 supports clusters of two, specially linked servers running Microsoft Windows NT® Server, Enterprise Edition. The primary function of MSCS occurs when one server in a cluster fails or is taken offline. With MSCS, the other server in the cluster takes over the failed server's operations. Clients using server resources experience little or no interruption of their work because the resource functions move from one server to the other.

Finding Information About MSCS

This manual, the Microsoft Cluster Server Administrator's Guide, covers the concepts required to install and administer a MSCS cluster. The following section outlines additional resources.

For information on configuring specific applications to run in a cluster, consult your application vendor. For information on configuring Microsoft BackOffice® applications to run in a cluster, see the online Windows NT Server, Enterprise Edition 4.0 Administrator's Guide.

Online Documentation

The following online documentation is available:

  • MSCS Readme.doc 

  • MSCS Help 

  • MSCS Glossary 

  • MSCS Administrator's Guide Online 

MSCS Readme.doc

The Readme.doc file is located in the \MSCS folder on the Windows NT Server, Enterprise Edition 4.0 Components CD. It contains general information about MSCS, including software-specific information, a description of product features, and limitations that were added or identified after the other documentation was finalized.


MSCS Cluster Administrator Help is the primary source for assistance with MSCS Cluster Administrator. The Help includes procedures to guide you through administrative tasks. To access MSCS Help, open Cluster Administrator and press f1 or use the Help menu.

Context-sensitive Help is available on all MSCS Cluster Administrator components by first clicking the question-mark button in the upper-right corner of a dialog box, and then clicking the component that you want identified.

MSCS Glossary

A complete MSCS glossary is available in Appendix A of the MSCS Administrator's Guide and online, in Cluster Administrator Help.

MSCS Administrator's Guide Online

This book is also available online on all computers running Windows NT Server, Enterprise Edition. The online version of the MSCS Administrator's Guide can be accessed by clicking Start, pointing to Programs, and clicking Books Online.

The MS World Wide Web Site

For information on upgrades and other news pertaining to MSCS, see the Microsoft World Wide Web site: