AlwaysOn: Configuring NTFS Permissions for the Quorum File Share

The female and male penguin…such a dreamy couple….after the egg is made…the female transfers the egg to her mate, then leaves to spend winter in the open ocean.  The quorum between the egg and parent is maintained throughout this changing of guard.

SQL Server 2012 AlwaysOn can be configured in a number of different quorum voting configurations.  Each aims to ensure the quorum of the nodes in the primary data centre are not comprised by outages in the Disaster Recovery data centre, or loss of connectivity between the two data centres.

In the Node and File Share Majority quorum model, a file share provides an additional vote to establish quorum.   The file share requires full permissions granted to the Cluster’s Virtual Computer Object (VCO) Account.   The VCO account will be the same name as the cluster and by default gets created in the Computers container in your Domain.

A given file share can also act as a witness to one or more WSFCs so you would need to grant permissions to more than one VCO account, one for each cluster.   The file share should ideally exist in a 3rd data centre, however you could in theory configure the share within the Primary or Disaster Recovery data centres, even utilising other WSFC nodes if you are really stuck for resources.