Adding a new FortiGate to an operating cluster

Adding a new FortiGate to an operating cluster

This procedure describes how to add a new FortiGate unit to a functioning cluster. Adding a new unit to a cluster does not interrupt the operation of the cluster unless you have to change how the cluster is connected to the network to accommodate the new cluster unit.

You can use this procedure to add as many units as required to the cluster.


To add a new unit to a functioning cluster

1. Install the same firmware build on the new cluster unit as is running on the cluster.

2. Register and apply licenses to the new cluster unit. This includes FortiCloud activation, FortiClient licensing, and FortiToken licensing, and entering a license key if you purchased more than 10 Virtual Domains (VDOMS).

3. Configure the new cluster unit for HA operation with the same HA configuration as the other units in the cluster.

4. If the cluster is running in Transparent mode, change the operating mode of the new cluster unit to Transparent mode.

5. Power off the new cluster unit.

6. Connect the new cluster unit to the cluster.

7. For example, see How to set up FGCP clustering (recommended steps) on page 1354.

8. Power on the new cluster unit.

When the unit starts it negotiates to join the cluster. After it joins the cluster, the cluster synchronizes the new unit configuration with the configuration of the primary unit.


You can add a new unit to a functioning cluster at any time. The new cluster unit must:

  • Have the same hardware configuration as the cluster units. Including the same hard disk configuration and the same AMC cards installed in the same slots.
  • Have the same firmware build as the cluster.
  • Be set to the same operating mode (NAT or Transparent) as the cluster.
  • Be operating in single VDOM mode.

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About Mike

Michael Pruett, CISSP has a wide range of cyber-security and network engineering expertise. The plethora of vendors that resell hardware but have zero engineering knowledge resulting in the wrong hardware or configuration being deployed is a major pet peeve of Michael's. This site was started in an effort to spread information while providing the option of quality consulting services at a much lower price than Fortinet Professional Services. Owns PacketLlama.Com (Fortinet Hardware Sales) and Office Of The CISO, LLC (Cybersecurity consulting firm).

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