PROXMOX : Safely remove node from cluster

remove node from cluster proxmox

This tutorial may only be used if you want to delete permanently a node from an existing proxmox cluster!

Step 1 : Migrate all VMs to another active node

Migrate all VMs to another active node. You can use the live migration feature if you have a shared storage or offline migration if you only have local storage.

Step 2 : Display all active nodes

Display all active nodes in order identify the name of the node you want to remove

root@proxmox-node2:~# pvecm nodes

Membership information
Nodeid Votes Name
1 1 proxmox-node1 (local)
2 1 proxmox-node2
3 1 proxmox-node3
4 1 proxmox-node4

Step 3: Shutdown (permanently) the node that you want to remove

Please be carefull, it a permanently remove !!!

  • Never restart the removed node
  • Don't assign the local ip address of the removed node to a new node
  • Never assign the name of the removed node to a new node

Step 4 : Remove the node from the proxmox cluster

Connect to an active node, for example proxmox-node2.

root@proxmox:~# pvecm delnode NodeName

For Example :

root@proxmox-node2:~# pvecm delnode proxmox-node3

Step 5 : Remove the removed node from the proxmox GUI

Log in to an active node, for example proxmox-node2.

root@proxmox-node2:~# ls -l /etc/pve/nodes/
proxmox-node1 proxmox-node2 proxmox-node3 proxmox-node4

All nodes have is own directory (VM’s inventory, for example), the directory /etc/pve/nodes/ is synced between all cluster nodes.

The removed node is still visible in GUI until the node directory exists in the directory /etc/pve/nodes/.

If you want to remove from Proxmox GUI the node previously deleted , you just need to delete the directory /etc/pve/nodes/NodeName.

root@proxmox-node2:~# mv /etc/pve/nodes/NodeName /root/NodeName

Don't do this unless you understand each step of the process and don't mind putting the node in state where you won't easily be able to re-add it back to a cluster. Also note that after I did this, the containers on the node do not start up automatically, even though their config file says they are supposed to.

Sources :


Hi, I'm Florian and I'm 32 years old. I have discover IT at 17, and i had my first internet connection at 23. So i'm not going to say that i was very precocious in this domain... PS : I 'm French, so please, be lenient with my english ;)

6 Responses

  1. luis says:

    after remove nodes in /etc/pve/nodes/ it continues showing in cli web.

  2. Michael Cooper says:

    Just an FYI if you follow this to the letter, it works like a charm. your last step in this process is to refresh/reload your browser.

  3. jo says:

    hi, your let’s encrypt certificate is expired

  4. Priit L says:

    Thanks! A remark – before removing node’s folder from /etc/pve/nodes I had to issue
    pvecm expected 1
    as suggested in

  5. canifer says:

    Just wanna say that if you want to re add the nodes, you can use this method:

  6. Omar Santos says:

    Thank you for writing sharing this! I can confirm that works perfectly in 6.2-4, as well.

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