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Best way to plan Network adapters for Hyper-V Images

Posted on 2014-03-20
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Planning a server with 2-4 DIfferent Hyper-V Images.

Windows Server 2012 R2, SQL Server 2012, Possible 1-2 more Windows Server 2012 images.

Is it best to dedicate 1 nic per vm or 2 nics per vm?

Do 2 vm's actually give you 2 Gigabit?
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Question by:MJCS
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by:Cliff Galiher
Cliff Galiher earned 2000 total points
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With 2012, things have changed pretty significantly regarding networking and those changes do have an impact on hyper-V planning as well. Personally, in most scenarios (there are always edge cases) I do not dedicate NICs to VMs anymore. Now that 2012 supports native teaming, you can team them up based on how many virtual networks you want or need, bind the team to the virtual switch, and then attach your VMs to that switch. You can use new QoS features to ensure that critical VMs are gauranteed bandwidth on the team and you get better network utilization because, unlike a "dedicated" NIC (or two), they won't sit idle while another VM runs full-tilt. All VMs get the aggregate bandwidth as needed, basically giving you the network benefits that virtualization has brought to storage and CPU utilization for years.

Technet has many resources on these new configurations and several videos. Instead of posting a dozen or so links, I simply recommend turning to your favorite search engine.
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by:MJCS
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How do you calculate how many NICs to add to a new deployment?
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Cliff Galiher earned 2000 total points
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A combination of an on-site audit, a custom spreadsheet that incorporates our years of experience, and a little bit of intuition. We also modify and update our proprietary deployment docs, including the spreadsheet, as new technologies evolve...such as SMB3, native NIC teaming, and increasing popularity of cloud applications.

The number of NICs I'd put in a Hyper-V running in a 3 node cluster will be different than one running VMs with Exchange in a DAG configuration. The number of VMs, the workloads, the user count, the work type all play a part. Sage uses network resources very differently than Quickbooks, for example. And if a large amount of their workload is Office 365 or other cloud service and they have a limited upstream, NIC counts obviously wouldn't improve that at all. So there is no "easy" answer to that question.
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