Maintenance mode can get stuck at 2% progress when there are still active VMs running on that ESX host. An ESX or ESXi Server will not complete going into maintenance mode until there are no running VMs running on it.

If you have HA configured it should automatically vmotion off the VMs to another ESX host with enough resources. If your also using DRS it will do some load balancing and also work out any affinity rules.

What can stop VMs from vmotioning automatically to another host is:
  • CD/Floppy still attached to VM - If so remove it
  • The virtual machine vNIC is attached to an internal only network or a vSwitch not available on another ESX server - Check spellings of vSwitches and which network type the VM isconnected to.
  • VMtools currently installing in the Virtual Machine - Wait for install to complete or cancel the installation.
  • The virtual machine is stored on a datastore local to that ESX host - The VM needs to be on a centralized datastore (SAN etc) that is availble to another ESX host.
I have also found in a cluster of two hosts (even in VC 2.5 u3 and ESX 3.5 u3) it does not automatically migrate the VMs, and needs to be done manually. This used to work in u1 but was changed from u2 onwards to make harsher HA calculations, hence HA does not allow the VM to be auto migrated to another host.







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