Binding LAN ports in Server 2016

Damian Gardner
Damian Gardner used Ask the Experts™
on
Hello - we have noticed that when we bind our 4 ports together to achieve 4GB speed on our Server 2016, and then perform a speed test with a network utility, that the results are slower for some reason.  Are there settings or some type of trick to allowing for faster speed to actually be achieved through a binded network interface?
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Qlemo"Batchelor", Developer and EE Topic Advisor
Top Expert 2015

Commented:
What you mean is called "trunking". You won't achieve any speed improvement against a single target -  most trunking techniques allow for one target, one NIC paths only.
Depending on how the trunk is configured at both server and switch, management overhead might reduce the performance for a single target.
You should see a performance improvement if you test against more than one (max. 4) targets simultanously.
SeanSystem Engineer
Commented:
I am assuming you are talking about NIC teaming? This isn't a trunk it's a load balance and fail over. Just like Qlemo said above, you'll see an improvement when hitting multiple targets at once as intended by a NIC team.
Distinguished Expert 2018
Commented:
Mostly agree with the above with switch-independent teams.  Windows teaming does support LACP though, which when used with the right hardware, can actually load balance across NICs.  But not all switches are equal.  I've seen LACP implementations that are so bad that you might as well not use them (I'm looking at you Netgear.)  So it really depends on what you configured and how, which your post didn't fully go into.
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Damian GardnerIT Admin

Author

Commented:
Oh - yes correct, NIC teaming is what I'm referring to.  Ok - so it sounds like it is more of a load balancing and failover measure, and not a performance booster.  Sean mentioned seeing improvement with multiple targets.  Could that also apply to multiple users hitting the SQL Server simultaneously for data requests?  So if 4 NICs are in the TEAM, then those 4 requests could be served simultaneously at full speed?  

Thanks guys
"Batchelor", Developer and EE Topic Advisor
Top Expert 2015
Commented:
Yes - networkwise. But usually the SQL engine is more of an issue than network bandwidth, so don't expect much of a performance boost.
Damian GardnerIT Admin

Author

Commented:
understood.  thanks very much

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