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Manage Nodes in Strong Consistency


This page describes and how to manage nodes in strong consistency (SC) namespaces. The topics here include how to add and remove nodes to the namespace and roster, how to validate partition availability, and how to revive dead partitions.

Add nodes to the cluster and roster

  1. Install and configure Aerospike on the new nodes as described in Install & Configure for Strong Consistency.

  2. When the nodes have joined the cluster, use the following command to verify that the result in cluster_size is greater than the result in ns_cluster_size. This is visible in the following output where cluster_size shows 6 rows, while ns_cluster_size shows 5 rows.

    Admin> show stat -flip like cluster_size
    ~Service Statistics (2021-10-22 23:43:35 UTC)~
    Node|cluster_size| 6| 6| 6| 6| 6| 6
    Number of rows: 6

    ~test Namespace Statistics (2021-10-22 23:43:35 UTC)~
    Node|ns_cluster_size| 5| 5| 5| 5| 5| 5
    Number of rows: 6
  3. Use show roster to see the newly observed nodes in its Observed Nodes section.


Tools package 6.2.x or later is required to use the asadm manage roster & show roster commands. Otherwise, use the equivalent asinfo - roster and asinfo - roster-set commands.

  1. Use the following command to copy the Observed Nodes list into the Pending Roster.

    Admin> enable
    Admin+> manage roster stage observed ns test
    Pending roster now contains observed nodes.
    Run "manage recluster" for your changes to take affect.
  2. Activate the new roster with the manage recluster command.

    Admin+> manage recluster
    Successfully started recluster
  3. Run show roster to confirm that the roster has been updated on all nodes. Verify that the service's cluster_size matches the namespace's ns_cluster_size.

Remove nodes and update the roster

This section describes how to remove a node from an existing namespace configured with SC.


Do not simultaneously remove a number of nodes equal to or greater than your replication-factor. Removing too many nodes simultaneously may result in unavailable partitions, meaning some data is unavailable to the application. If you observe unavailable partitions, re-add the nodes and wait for the cluster to synchronize before proceeding.

Namespaces with replication-factor set to 1 (RF1) have some partitions unavailable whenever any node leaves the cluster, making it impractical to perform a rolling restart or upgrade.

Strong consistency implies the guarantee that with RF N, N copies of data are written to the cluster. A fully formed cluster must contain X nodes where X >= N to satisfy this. Creating a cluster where X = N means that all partitions become unavailable during a single node shut down.

Remove node from the cluster


Tools package 6.2.x or later is required to use the asadm manage roster & show roster commands. Otherwise, use the equivalent asinfo - roster and asinfo - roster-set commands.

  1. Run show roster. Verify all roster nodes are present in the cluster.

    Admin+> pager on
    Admin+> show roster
    ~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~Roster (2021-10-23 00:08:54 UTC)~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~
    Node | Node ID | Namespace| Current Roster | Pending Roster | Observed Nodes |BB9070016AE4202 | test |BB9070016AE4202,BB9060016AE4202,BB9050016AE4202,BB9040016AE4202,BB9020016AE4202,BB9010016AE4202 |BB9070016AE4202,BB9060016AE4202,BB9050016AE4202,BB9040016AE4202,BB9020016AE4202,BB9010016AE4202 |BB9070016AE4202,BB9060016AE4202,BB9050016AE4202,BB9040016AE4202,BB9020016AE4202,BB9010016AE4202 |BB9060016AE4202 | test |BB9070016AE4202,BB9060016AE4202,BB9050016AE4202,BB9040016AE4202,BB9020016AE4202,BB9010016AE4202 |BB9070016AE4202,BB9060016AE4202,BB9050016AE4202,BB9040016AE4202,BB9020016AE4202,BB9010016AE4202 |BB9070016AE4202,BB9060016AE4202,BB9050016AE4202,BB9040016AE4202,BB9020016AE4202,BB9010016AE4202 |BB9050016AE4202 | test |BB9070016AE4202,BB9060016AE4202,BB9050016AE4202,BB9040016AE4202,BB9020016AE4202,BB9010016AE4202 |BB9070016AE4202,BB9060016AE4202,BB9050016AE4202,BB9040016AE4202,BB9020016AE4202,BB9010016AE4202 |BB9070016AE4202,BB9060016AE4202,BB9050016AE4202,BB9040016AE4202,BB9020016AE4202,BB9010016AE4202 |BB9040016AE4202 | test |BB9070016AE4202,BB9060016AE4202,BB9050016AE4202,BB9040016AE4202,BB9020016AE4202,BB9010016AE4202 |BB9070016AE4202,BB9060016AE4202,BB9050016AE4202,BB9040016AE4202,BB9020016AE4202,BB9010016AE4202 |BB9070016AE4202,BB9060016AE4202,BB9050016AE4202,BB9040016AE4202,BB9020016AE4202,BB9010016AE4202 |BB9010016AE4202 | test |BB9070016AE4202,BB9060016AE4202,BB9050016AE4202,BB9040016AE4202,BB9020016AE4202,BB9010016AE4202 |BB9070016AE4202,BB9060016AE4202,BB9050016AE4202,BB9040016AE4202,BB9020016AE4202,BB9010016AE4202 |BB9070016AE4202,BB9060016AE4202,BB9050016AE4202,BB9040016AE4202,BB9020016AE4202,BB9010016AE4202 |*BB9020016AE4202| test |BB9070016AE4202,BB9060016AE4202,BB9050016AE4202,BB9040016AE4202,BB9020016AE4202,BB9010016AE4202 |BB9070016AE4202,BB9060016AE4202,BB9050016AE4202,BB9040016AE4202,BB9020016AE4202,BB9010016AE4202 |BB9070016AE4202,BB9060016AE4202,BB9050016AE4202,BB9040016AE4202,BB9020016AE4202,BB9010016AE4202
    Number of rows: 6
  2. Shut down safely the nodes to be removed with the following command (in this example on with node id BB9070016AE4202). Verify you are removing fewer nodes that your configured RF.


    Any operational procedure that executes a SIGTERM is safe. After startup, a SIGTERM flushes data to disk and properly signal other servers.

    systemctl stop aerospike
  3. When migrations are complete, run the stat command on partitions_remaining until the migrate_partitions_remaining stat becomes zero on all nodes.

    Admin> show stat service like partitions_remaining -flip
    ~~~~~Service Statistics (2021-10-23 00:25:10 UTC)~~~~
    Node|migrate_partitions_remaining| 0| 0| 0| 0| 0
    Number of rows: 5

Remove node from the roster

  1. Run show roster to verify that BB9070016AE4202 is removed from the pending roster. In the following example there is one fewer node in the Observed Nodes column than in Current Roster and Pending Roster.

    Admin+> pager on
    Admin+> show roster
    ~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~Roster (2021-10-23 00:26:56 UTC)~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~
    Node| Node ID|Namespace| Current Roster| Pending Roster| Observed Nodes|BB9070016AE4202 |test |BB9070016AE4202,BB9060016AE4202,BB9050016AE4202,BB9040016AE4202,BB9020016AE4202,BB9010016AE4202|BB9070016AE4202,BB9060016AE4202,BB9050016AE4202,BB9040016AE4202,BB9020016AE4202,BB9010016AE4202|BB9060016AE4202,BB9050016AE4202,BB9040016AE4202,BB9020016AE4202,BB9010016AE4202|BB9060016AE4202 |test |BB9070016AE4202,BB9060016AE4202,BB9050016AE4202,BB9040016AE4202,BB9020016AE4202,BB9010016AE4202|BB9070016AE4202,BB9060016AE4202,BB9050016AE4202,BB9040016AE4202,BB9020016AE4202,BB9010016AE4202|BB9060016AE4202,BB9050016AE4202,BB9040016AE4202,BB9020016AE4202,BB9010016AE4202|BB9050016AE4202 |test |BB9070016AE4202,BB9060016AE4202,BB9050016AE4202,BB9040016AE4202,BB9020016AE4202,BB9010016AE4202|BB9070016AE4202,BB9060016AE4202,BB9050016AE4202,BB9040016AE4202,BB9020016AE4202,BB9010016AE4202|BB9060016AE4202,BB9050016AE4202,BB9040016AE4202,BB9020016AE4202,BB9010016AE4202|BB9040016AE4202 |test |BB9070016AE4202,BB9060016AE4202,BB9050016AE4202,BB9040016AE4202,BB9020016AE4202,BB9010016AE4202|BB9070016AE4202,BB9060016AE4202,BB9050016AE4202,BB9040016AE4202,BB9020016AE4202,BB9010016AE4202|BB9060016AE4202,BB9050016AE4202,BB9040016AE4202,BB9020016AE4202,BB9010016AE4202|BB9010016AE4202 |test |BB9070016AE4202,BB9060016AE4202,BB9050016AE4202,BB9040016AE4202,BB9020016AE4202,BB9010016AE4202|BB9070016AE4202,BB9060016AE4202,BB9050016AE4202,BB9040016AE4202,BB9020016AE4202,BB9010016AE4202|BB9060016AE4202,BB9050016AE4202,BB9040016AE4202,BB9020016AE4202,BB9010016AE4202|*BB9020016AE4202|test |BB9070016AE4202,BB9060016AE4202,BB9050016AE4202,BB9040016AE4202,BB9020016AE4202,BB9010016AE4202|BB9070016AE4202,BB9060016AE4202,BB9050016AE4202,BB9040016AE4202,BB9020016AE4202,BB9010016AE4202|BB9060016AE4202,BB9050016AE4202,BB9040016AE4202,BB9020016AE4202,BB9010016AE4202
    Number of rows: 6
  1. Copy the Observed Nodes list into the Pending Roster.

    Admin+> manage roster stage observed ns test
    Pending roster now contains observed nodes.
    Run "manage recluster" for your changes to take affect.
  2. Run manage recluster to apply the change.

    Admin+> manage recluster
    Successfully started recluster
  3. Check if startup is complete. Run the following command periodically until it returns ok.

    asinfo -h [ip of host] -v 'status'

Avoid executing a process shut down such as restarting during startup. For more information, see Dead Partitions.

Partition availability

In cases such as network partition and server hardware failure, partitions can become unavailable or dead. This section describes how to validate partitions, and how to manage partitions that are unavailable or dead.

Unavailable partitions

If you have unavailable partitions, there may be missing data. Nodes which are expected in the roster, are not currently in the cluster.

If roster nodes are missing from the cluster, take the initial step of restoring the missing nodes by changing the roster, or fixing hardware or network issues.

Dead partitions

If you have dead partitions, it means that all the roster nodes are in the cluster, but partitions are still unavailable due to storage failure or potential loss due to buffered writes.

Certain failures of hardware, combined with certain Aerospike configurations, may result in one of the possible cases where data has been lost:

  • Drive loss, such as user actions to erase drives (clearing or wiping), or catastrophic hardware failure.
  • If the commit-to-device configuration option is not set, untrusted or unclean shut down (crash, SIGKILL, SIGSEGV, and others).
  • Shutdown during a Fast Restart is not a "clean shutdown". It does not lead to data loss but may lead to dead partitions.

There may be lost data in these cases, depending on the number of nodes simultaneously affected, the replication factor, and whether data migration has completed for the partitions in question.

Aerospike detects whether you have multiple failures, and detects potential true data loss. Affected partitions are marked "dead", and require operator intervention to continue. To allow reads in this circumstance would violate Strong Consistency.

Unclean shut down

The effect of an unclean shutdown can be limited by setting the commit-to-device namespace option. With this option, simultaneous crashes are known not to lose data, and never generate dead partitions.

However, enabling commit-to-device generates a flush on every write, and comes with significant performance penalties low write throughput cases, or on high performance storage such as some direct-attach NVMe drives or some high performance enterprise SANs.

If you do not have commit-to-device enabled, server crashes may cause dead partitions. User-generated restarts (upgrades) should not cause this effect, as a restart flushes buffered writes to disk and other metadata on shut down even without commit-to-device.

Detected potential data loss

In the case of detected potential data loss, the cluster maintains unavailable dead partitions so that you can take corrective action. With Aerospike's feature that alerts you to these conditions, consistent reads are guaranteed allowing time for correct operator intervention.

You may determine that no data has been lost. For example, a shutdown during Fast Restart while running a test cluster, you may decide that availability in the case of this potential data loss is preferable. Or you may decide to restore data from an external source, if available.

If you have an external trusted source, consider disabling applications, reviving the potentially flawed namespace, restoring from the external trusted source, and then enabling applications.

Auto revive

Database 7.1 introduced the auto-revive feature, which selectively revives partitions at startup. Auto revive is for deployments that don’t have any remediation options available and/or want to minimize downtime due to potential data loss. Auto revive is selective; it will only revive partitions that could have data.

In a case where two nodes in a strong-consistency, RF2 namespace were shut down uncleanly, via SIGKILL for instance, the cluster detects possible data loss, which may result in dead partitions. The partitions will be "unavailable" until the nodes are added back to the cluster. Only when all nodes from the roster are in the cluster will the partitions report as dead. Typically the operator would need to follow remediation steps which would include issuing the revive command to the cluster.

With auto-revive enabled, the cluster ignores this potential data-loss event and continues to allow client traffic. However if the two nodes in this scenario had their data wiped, then auto-revive would not restore the affected partitions and would still require that the operator take remediation steps which include issuing the revive command.

Validate partitions

When you validate partitions, each node reports the global number of dead or unavailable partitions. For example, if the entire cluster has determined that 100 partitions are unavailable, all of the current nodes report 100 unavailable partitions.

  1. Use the following command to display which nodes report dead or unavailable partitions.

    show stat namespace for [NAMESPACE NAME] like 'unavailable|dead' -flip
  2. In the output of this command, the columns unavailable and dead should be 0 for each node.

    Admin> show stat namespace for test like 'unavailable|dead' -flip
    ~~~~~~test Namespace Statistics (2021-10-23 00:36:43 UTC)~~~~~~~
    Node|dead_partitions|unavailable_partitions| 0| 0| 0| 0| 0| 0| 0| 0| 0| 0
    Number of rows: 5

Revive dead partitions

You may wish to use your namespace in spite of potentially missing data. For example, you may have entered a maintenance state where you have disabled application use, and are preparing to reapply data from a reliable message queue or other source.

  1. Identify dead partitions.

    Admin> show stat namespace for test like dead -flip
    ~test Namespace Statistics (2021-10-23 00:38:41 UTC)~
    Node|dead_partitions| 264| 264| 264| 264| 264
    Number of rows: 5
  2. Run revive to acknowledge the potential data loss on each server.

    Admin+> manage revive ns test
    ~~~Revive Namespace Partitions~~~
    Number of rows: 5
  3. Run recluster to revive the dead partitions.

    Admin+> manage recluster
    Successfully started recluster
  4. Verify that there are no longer any dead partitions with the dead_partitions metric.

    Admin> show stat namespace for test like dead -flip
    ~test Namespace Statistics (2021-10-23 00:40:41 UTC)~
    Node|dead_partitions| 264| 264| 264| 264| 264
    Number of rows: 5