TS keeps freezing in Network Load Balancing Manager and if both TS are up, log in times take a long time randomly - 30 minutes

Maybe this is a 2 part question.

If I drainstop one box, I seem to have no problem up to this point. Once they are both running, the NLBm console, hangs on connecting to TS2 (example). They are Unicast with 2 nics.

Also, login times seem to take sometimes 20 minutes. Not always. I used Brian Maddens solution, to log the login process, but it just hangs. Maybe some dialogue will help me troubleshoot the right thing.
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Cláudio RodriguesFounder and CEOCommented:
Well I posted here many times why NLB should NOT be used as a load balancing solution for TS. Ok it is free and I can see the benefit in 'free'. But free does not mean you will not have to spend time troubleshooting it simply because it does not work properly. And if you are spending time it means your company is actually paying for this time so free is not free anymore.
The main reasons why NLB should not be used:
1. It is NOT resource based. A resource based load balancer is capable of determining how resources are being used on the TS (CPU, Memory, Number of users connected, etc) and based on this number for ALL TSs, it finds the best one (least busy) to send the user to. NLB is NOT resource based so if a TS is at 100% CPU for the last 5 minutes, it WILL send a new user there, to a server that is dying. No good.
2. NLB is famous for not working properly all the time. You may be one of the lucky ones and NLB will work great for you. But overall, people tend to have a lot of problems with NLB. I have seen customers where NLB was deployed the exact same way on two different sites and it would work fine in one site but no go at all on the other site. Same hardware, same everything.
3. NLB knows nothing about disconnections. If a user gets disconnected for some reason, NLB does not know how to reconnect the user to the correct TS.

I could go on forever here and I am sure this is not the answer you were probably looking for. But honestly, I am just trying to help by eliminating your problem and trying to make your life easier by pointing you to the correct solution. TS is what I have been doing since 1994 and trust me, NLB is not the way to go. If you want to read why NLB is no good, read these two articles.

Cláudio Rodrigues

Microsoft MVP
Windows Server - Terminal Services
reubstrAuthor Commented:
Thanks for the quick response. I have read a lot of posts on here from you in the past 2 weeks trying to trouble shoot these 2 servers.

I also took the time and read both part 1 and 2.

Some more facts:
1. I have been the Sys Admin here for 2 weeks and am just getting to know the infrastructure.
2. These servers have been in production around 3 years.
3. I am leaning towards rebuilding both TS's one at a time, hopefully starting today.

"1. It is NOT resource based."

1. Resources at the times of 20+ (20 being the low side) minute logons are minimal. I can be RDP'd into the machine and watch the resources and there is nothing tying the machine up when someone else is just hanging on "Applying your personal settings" monologue box.  It may work fine for 3 days then BAM... every 5th person may get 20 to ( I have seen it 45 ).

Also, in the scenario where I rebuild one of the boxes, what should I watch for? How do I back up the TS CALS for the new box?

I really appreciate your imput. Claudio. It is valued.

Reuben Najera
Cláudio RodriguesFounder and CEOCommented:
Another thing to keep in mind is, TSs should be rebooted, if possible, on a daily basis (like every night).
I would rebuild them and use a load balancer like the 2X LoadBalancer or a similar product.
For the TSCALs the right way to do is to simply install the new licensing server, activate it and then call Microsoft (their Clearinghouse) and tell them you had to reinstall the licensing server and you need your TSCALs reissued. They will do that for you at no cost.


Cláudio Rodrigues

Microsoft MVP
Windows Server - Terminal Services

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reubstrAuthor Commented:
Good stuff!
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