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> Chapter 15 - High Availability > Operating clusters and virtual clusters > Operating a cluster

Operating a cluster

The configurations of all of the FortiGates in a cluster are synchronized so that the cluster units can simulate a single FortiGate. Because of this synchronization, you manage the HA cluster instead of managing the individual cluster units. You manage the cluster by connecting to the GUI using any cluster interface configured for HTTPS or HTTP administrative access. You can also manage the cluster by connecting to the CLI using any cluster interface configured for SSH or telnet administrative access.

The cluster GUI dashboard displays the cluster name, the host name and serial number of each cluster member, and also shows the role of each unit in the cluster. The roles can be master (primary unit) and slave (subordinate units). The dashboard also displays a cluster unit front panel illustration.

You can also go to System > HA to view the cluster members list. This includes status information for each cluster unit. You can also use the cluster members list for a number of cluster management functions including changing the HA configuration of an operating cluster, changing the host name and device priority of a subordinate unit, and disconnecting a cluster unit from a cluster. See Cluster members list.

You can use log messages to view information about the status of the cluster. See Clusters and logging.

You can use SNMP to manage the cluster by configuring a cluster interface for SNMP administrative access. Using an SNMP manager you can get cluster configuration information and receive traps. See Clusters and SNMP.

You can configure a reserved management interface to manage individual cluster units. You can use this interface to access the GUI or CLI and to configure SNMP management for individual cluster units. See Managing individual cluster units using a reserved management interface.

You can manage individual cluster units by using SSH, telnet, or the CLI console on the GUI dashboard to connect to the CLI of the cluster. From the CLI you can use the execute ha manage command to connect to the CLI of any unit in the cluster.

You can also manage individual cluster units by using a null-modem cable to connect to any cluster unit CLI. From there you can use the execute ha manage command to connect to the CLI of each unit in the cluster.