NIC Teaming

Posted on 2011-05-10
Last Modified: 2012-05-11
I have two NIC’s on a Windows 2003 R2 Storage server that I would like to team them together. How do I do this? It doesn’t look like NVidia has any teaming drivers for my NIC’s. Is there another way or do I just have two NIC’s plugged in with two different static IP’s but it doesn’t like when you have two of the same gateways when I try this. Any suggestions will greatly be appreciated.
Question by:dude02
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    Expert Comment

    The first question is what are you trying to achive by teaming - if you are looking to increase performance its likly that you will be disappointed - teaming can aid redunancy but has little effect on network throughput.

    If you still want to do it then you have to have cards and drivers that support teaming - nothing else will do
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    Expert Comment

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    Author Comment

    Please see attach screen shot. Do I have this set up correctly?
    LVL 31

    Accepted Solution

    First off, you need to understand that Teaming is not really native to Windows.  Microsoft does not support it.  It is entirely done by the network card drivers.  You need to make sure you have loaded the manufacture's drivers and then use their tools to build your team.  Any other method will cause you angst.  What you have set up there are two IPs attached to two different NICs.  This will cause problems with DNS as each tries to be "the" address for the server.  Incoming will only use the one in DNS, unless the other is hard coded.  A team presents a single IP address to DNS and then it decides which NIC will respond.  You need to also make sure that not only your Server NICs support teaming, but also that your switch into which the server is plugged also supports teaming.

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    Author Comment

    Ok. If I don’t team the networks then do I just leave NIC #2 unplugged or is there a way to set up NIC #2 without having issues?
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    Expert Comment

    If you are not going to team them, then you can either unplug the second NIC or disable it in the OS.  Teaming is an option, and works well if done correctly.  I just want you to understand that it is third party dependent.

    LVL 15

    Assisted Solution

    by:Shaik M. Sajid
    About NVIDIA Teaming Technology
    Note: NVDIA Teaming functionality is available only on certain nForce systems. For
    details, see “System Requirements” on page 4.
    NVIDIA Teaming technology combines two or more Ethernet interfaces on your
    system into a single logical interface to form a team, resulting in increased
    bandwidth and network redundancy. The Windows operating system detects only
    one logical NVIDIA interface to which an administrator can then assign an IP
    NVIDIA Teaming technology improves network throughput by distributing traffic
    efficiently across all available Ethernet interfaces, also known as “load balancing”. In
    normal network conditions, both transmit and receive traffic are distributed.

    Increasing Network Bandwidth & Fault Tolerance — NVIDIA Teaming
    NVIDIA Teaming technology also improves network uploading time. If one of the
    physical Ethernet interfaces fails, the network can remain accessible because the
    remaining interface can take over the network traffic of the failed interface, achieving
    “fault tolerance”. The operating system and network application do not detect a
    network failure because network connection is bound to the logical interface rather
    than to a single physical interface.

    as the above article it's related to Increasing Network Bandwidth, load balance & Fault Tolerance

    the process of teaming is between two physical network cards bind to 1 logical interphase

    firstly update the lan drivers with latest..

    then  see this article...

    all the best
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    Expert Comment

    If you do not team the two NIC, you could configure a different IP address per Nic, and let the DNS on your network roundrobin the trafic between the two interfaces, like you've done...

    But this kind of configuration will not be really efficient...  you could roundrobin incoming trafic initiated from other computers trough DNS, but you will not roundrobin the trafic originated from your computer...  Windows will use the first available interface, meaning allways the same.  But it could be used as a failover for the trafic initiated from the computer...

    Thus, you should think about the purpose of the computer : is it a server or a workstation ?  Two IP's for a server on two nics could be usefull to increase the bandwidth (at least a few), on a workstation for a failover.

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