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GB Nic for MSCS

In a Microsoft cluster, could we use a Gigabit ethernet card for the cluster heartbeat.
is it supported to use ? and can you give me a link to confirm.

Thanks
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Kini pradeep
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Kini pradeep
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1 Solution
 
PberSolutions ArchitectCommented:
The best I could find was this:
http://support.microsoft.com/kb/258750
They mention the speed and say just match it at both ends, they don't say not to use GB.

We've had several Cluster Health checks done on our file cluster, Exchange as well SQL clusters by Microsoft and we have Normal cluster, Geo-noded clustest as well as full Geo-clusters all using 1000/Full for the heartbeat and we asked specifically about the GB connection for the heartbeat and they said that is totally fine.
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Kini pradeepIT Technology Senior ConsultantAuthor Commented:
Thanks Pber for the response, i know it would work but since i need it as an evidence for a Customer i was hoping to find a link on Microsoft or any of its partner sites. unfortunately i have not found any thing that i could use as evidence for the RFP.
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PberSolutions ArchitectCommented:
I'm sure that link that I send above used to say set to 10/half a long time ago.  It has since been updated alot.

the quote (from http://support.microsoft.com/kb/258750):

"With network adapters that can manually specify a speed and duplex mode, make sure that you hard set them to the same on all nodes and according to the manufacturer's specifications. For network adapters that do not support manual settings, follow the card manufacturer's specifications.

The information that is traveling across the heartbeat network is small, but latency is critical for communication. If you have the same speed and duplex settings, you can help make sure that you have reliable communication."

It implies you can set it to whatever speed you want as long as both ends are matched... unless you don't know, then it goes on as says then use the failsafe setting of 10/half.




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Kini pradeepIT Technology Senior ConsultantAuthor Commented:
thats convincing. Thanks.
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PberSolutions ArchitectCommented:
Yeah, I know.  It's nice to have cut/dry answers especially for RFP's.

These days you can't buy a server without a GB NIC.  Just because the NIC is GB capable, doesn't mean you can't hard code it to 100/Full and use a cross over cable or plug it into a 100MB swtich.  You can even configure it to 10/half with a cross over if you wanted.  

The heartbeat communication can fail and if the public interface is configured properly with mixed communications, it will take over the heartbeats.  The public NIC is typically configured to GB or however fast your network is, so the heartbeats still work over the GB public network.  The heartbeat is just another network, just can't have high latency.
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Kini pradeepIT Technology Senior ConsultantAuthor Commented:
Thanks Pber, We are planning on deploying servers from HP, any recommendations on Hardware ?
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PberSolutions ArchitectCommented:
Sorry been off on holidays.

Anyhow, we've mainly used DL380 or DL580's.  These days a DL380 is more than enough for most situations.  We rarely ever go to a quad socket machine anymore.
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