Cluster dedicated heartbeat network priority set incorrectly

[This topic is intended to address a specific issue called out by the Exchange Server Analyzer Tool. You should apply it only to systems that have had the Exchange Server Analyzer Tool run against them and are experiencing that specific issue. The Exchange Server Analyzer Tool, available as a free download, remotely collects configuration data from each server in the topology and automatically analyzes the data. The resulting report details important configuration issues, potential problems, and nondefault product settings. By following these recommendations, you can achieve better performance, scalability, reliability, and uptime. For more information about the tool or to download the latest versions, see "Microsoft Exchange Analyzers" at]  

Topic Last Modified: 2005-11-18

The Microsoft® Exchange Server Analyzer Tool reads the following registry entry to determine the priority ordering of each network interface resource in the Exchange server cluster:


The value of Priority indicates the network priority configured for the network interface resource. The network interface resource with the highest priority has a value of 1, the next highest has a value of 2, and so forth.

The Exchange Server Analyzer also reads the following registry entry to determine the defined role for each network in the Exchange server cluster:


A value of 1 indicates the network resource has been configured as a dedicated private (heartbeat) network. A value of 2 indicates the network resource has been configured as a dedicated public network (client access). A value of 3 indicates the network resource has been configured as a mixed network that allows both heartbeat traffic and client access traffic.

If the Exchange Server Analyzer determines that a network interface resource with a Role value of 1 has a Priority value that is greater than 1, a warning is displayed. This warning indicates that a dedicated heartbeat network was found, but its network priority is not set correctly.

Configuring a dedicated private network to use for the cluster heartbeat is a recommended best practice for all Exchange Server clusters. Communication between nodes is critical for smooth cluster operations. Use the following instructions to correctly configure the network priority for the dedicated heartbeat network.

To correct this warning

  1. Open Cluster Administrator and connect to the Exchange server cluster.

  2. In the left pane, right-click the Cluster object at the top of the hierarchy, and then click Properties.

  3. Click Network Priority.

  4. Select the dedicated heartbeat network resource.

  5. Click Move Up until the dedicated heartbeat network resource is at the top of the listed network resources.

  6. Click OK.

For more information about cluster heartbeat networks, see the following Microsoft Knowledge Base articles:

For additional details, review the Exchange Server 2003 Cluster Configuration Checklist (