3 Replies Latest reply on Aug 6, 2015 2:58 PM by Matt Coles

    Restoring former primary to backup primary after failover - reinstall required?

    Paul Banoub

      Hi all


      According to the admin guide, after you've failed over, and then want to restore your former primary server to now act as a backup primary then you have to re-install it.

      See point 6 here Switch to Backup Primary


      06-08-2015 15-21-39.jpg


      I found that pretty hard to believe, so simply used the tabadmin failover command to flip the yml config back to what it was pre-failover and it worked fine, no need to re-install.


      I raised a case with Tableau about this and their response was as follows. They've also admitted that this step does need clarification in the docs as a re-install is not required, just recommended.



      There are no technical reasons behind the step to reinstall the old Primary. It is more of a fail safe than a need. Here is the reasoning:


      Just in case configuration files were changed or the software files were modified in any way a reinstall would help mitigate
      this modification. If, for example, there was file corruption on the Tableau Server drive, there isn't a straight forward method to verify if the previous installation of the Primary is still operational and if all the files are still intact. So the idea behind a reinstall is to ensure that the new “Backup Primary” is in a stable and operational state.
      This is also an unobtrusive step since reinstalling the Primary does not require any downtime.



      The reasoning is not acceptable to me. You can't just say re-install *just in case* something got corrupted. It may not require downtime, but it does require effort, planning and change management paperwork.  And it is likely that the re-install would be
      taking place in a DR or just after DR situation where pressure is high and any extra work can be a distraction, thus possibly increasing the possibility of human error.


      Tableau have agreed that the docs need to be changed / clarified so I'd expect them to change soon.


      I'm interested to see what process people in the community follow in this situation.