The Cluster service is a system component used to control failover clusters activities on a single node. It is fundamental to the operation of the cluster. There is one instance of the Cluster service running on every node in a cluster. The Cluster service instances work together to perform the following failover cluster operations:
- Monitor and control cluster objects and cluster properties.
- Handle event notification.
- Facilitate communication among other software components.
- Perform failover and failback operations.
- Maintain a consistent image of the cluster across all nodes.
The Cluster service is so fundamental to a node's participation in a failover cluster that the term is often used to describe the activities of the cluster as a whole—for example, "The Cluster service performs failover." Such terminology is not necessarily wrong but it can be misleading. Keep in mind that a single instance of the Cluster service is specific to a single node and therefore cluster-wide operations depend on all instances of the Cluster service communicating and working together.