How to disable Datastore Heartbeating

I have had this question multiple times now, how do I disable datastore heartbeating? Personally, I don’t know why you would ever want to do this… but as multiple people have asked I figured I would write it down. There is no “disable” button unfortunately, but there is a work-around. Below are the steps you need to take to disable datastore heartbeating.

vSphere Client:

  • Right Cluster object
  • Click “Edit Settings”
  • Click “Datastore Heartbeating”
  • Click “Select only from my preferred datastores”
  • Do not select any datastores

Web Client:

  • Click “Cluster object”
  • Click “Manage” tab
  • Click “vSphere HA”
  • Click “Edit button” on the right side
  • Click “Datastore Heartbeating”
  • Click “Select only from my preferred datastores”
  • Do not select any datastores

It is as simple as that… However, let me stress that this is not something that I would recommend doing. Only when you are troubleshooting and need it disabled for whatever reason, please make sure to enable it when you are done.

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    1. says

      Hi Duncan. Thanks for putting this out there. I encountered this subject when first upgrading to vSphere 5 and trying to remove an old datastore. I received the red X since the datastore was being used for heartbeating. I tried to identify where the “list” of datastores that are being used was saved. When I was unable to find this I proceeded to do as you wrote. I didn’t disable but selected only the datastores I wanted to keep. Thanks. Dov

    2. says

      Hi Duncan, I found the following statement in the offical VMware Design course student guide:

      “If you deploy a converged network environment, where storage and management network traffic
      travel over the same physical network interface cards (NICs), disable datastore heartbeating.
      Datastore heartbeating does not provide any benefit in this type of network.”

      Are there some disadvantages, if datastores heartbeats are left enabled in this szenario? I think the additional “overhead” is not worth mentioning or?


      • says

        There is hardly any overhead indeed… I agree with the statement that in a converged environment Datastore Heartbeating won’t bring much. But then again, it also shouldn’t cause any problems either. And it will also still help detecting “network config issues”. For instance if someone screws up the config of just the management network vlan but not the storage vlan.