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SBS 2008 - Combine two gigabit nics for faster network speed.

Posted on 2010-01-09
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Hey,

Is it possible and worth combinging two gigabit network ports on an SBS2008 server? I figured that SBS2008 only uses one, may as well try and use the other to speed the network connection up.

Cheers
Smitch
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Question by:SM17CH
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9 Comments
 
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ICaldwell earned 1000 total points
ID: 26276103
What you looking for is teaming nic's... you will need to go into the configuration on your nic cards and see if teaming is supported... if you have server nic's or Intel nic's you will see this, most of the other cards out there don't have this ability....

http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Link_aggregation

Here is a pic from my computer... It supports Teaming...
Team-Nic.JPG
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by:ICaldwell
ID: 26276111
If you don't have this ability you can still put both NIC's on the network, you can setup certain users to access one server while others access the other, or at least you access on one nic card while users access on another....  you could also use one on a backend network for the servers to talk to each other while one is for users to connect to the server....

Many ways to setup something like this....
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by:itsmein
itsmein earned 1000 total points
ID: 26276343
Teaming - i use it in order to make sure the server stays online even if one nic fails - fault tolerance.

if you want to increase the network speed, assuming your network is 1Gbps, you will need to have the two nics on the server to be connected to two different switches so atleast the users on the switch get fast data transfer. (assuming your server has the resources to transfer data upto 1gbps//

doing teaming and the connecting it to a singe gbps switch WILL NOT increase the speed. when i do teaming to achive higher transfer rate , i connect it to device that has a throughput of over 8Gbps (not the switches, but deep packet filter UTM devices) .

In most cases 1gbps nic card is good enough. are you facing any issues?

SC
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by:SM17CH
ID: 26276400
Thanks,
We have Dell servers with Broadcom NIC's they seem to support teaming with a different driver.
The reason I was thinking of doing this was I wanted to try and maximise speed between our SQL server and out SBS server as software on the SBS uses SQL quite alot.
Cheers everyone.
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LVL 11

Expert Comment

by:ICaldwell
ID: 26276418
If you can team them, then go for it... We do it with our servers, it gives a little speed but more importantly fault tolerance... If you are to put them on the same network one thing to provide better access would be to connect them to difference switches, that way you have multiple paths to the server
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Expert Comment

by:itsmein
ID: 26276437
If you are looking to increase the speed only between the SQL Server and SBS Server, do not go for teaming. does the SQL Server have a second nic. if yes, just put on a cat6 cross cable connecting them and assign a IP not on your existing subnet (if your existing is 10.3.x.x , then use something line 192.168.1.x) on both nics, edit host file to route the traffic via this IP (and hence this nic) - will work absolutely fine. and the speed cannot be matched with teaming!

again - i have never seen any credible improvement in network data transfer after teaming. you can try it though.

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Expert Comment

by:ICaldwell
ID: 26276496
I mention this above, by creating a back end network for your servers to communicate on... Team Nic's do provide some level of load balancing but not as good as a hardware solution such as creating two separate networks...  The big part of team nic's are fault tolerance...
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Author Comment

by:SM17CH
ID: 26276589
I like all your ideas. thanks guys
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Expert Comment

by:itsmein
ID: 26276627
TEAMING does not provide a solution for increaing data transfer. i have done teaming of nics on well over 50 servers and i dare say u can get a bitmeter to test the difference with and without nic teaming. there will be less than 5%!!!!!

forget the points, but you need to mark comment ID 26276437 as answer.
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