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  • Network transfer speeds drop a minute into the transfer

    Hello,

    I have 2 Windows 2003 R2 x64 (with SP2) servers connected among themselves with Edimax Gigabit NICs.

    Every time I try to transfer files between them (using their private IPs) I get around 50% Network Utilization for about 1 minute and then the speeds drop to about 1% and stay there for the rest of the transfer (with occasional peaks of 50% for no more than 3 seconds).

    I have tried enabling Jumbo frames on the NICs to no avail.

    I have tried disabling RSS, TCPA and TCPChimney - again, to no avail.

    I can also confirm that this only happens for transfers of large files, when transferring a large amount of small files, I get lower utilization (around 25%) but this remains constant throughout the transfer.

    Any Ideas?

    P.S. I've found a few other reports of this issue on the web, but nothing helpful which I have yet to try.

    I'll be happy to supply further information if needed, but bare in mind, these are production servers and it might take me a while to get results up.

  • #2
    Re: Network transfer speeds drop a minute into the transfer

    Keep in mind that with gigabit hardware you're never going to reach true gigabit speed, but yes that does seem low. What interface are the cards connected to - PCI-E?

    Personally I wouldn't use cheap&cheerful adapters in a production server...
    Gareth Howells

    BSc (Hons), MBCS, MCP, MCDST, ICCE

    Any advice is given in good faith and without warranty.

    Please give reputation points if somebody has helped you.

    "For by now I could have stretched out my hand and struck you and your people with a plague that would have wiped you off the Earth." (Exodus 9:15) - I could kill you with my thumb.

    "Everything that lives and moves will be food for you." (Genesis 9:3) - For every animal you don't eat, I'm going to eat three.

    Comment


    • #3
      Re: Network transfer speeds drop a minute into the transfer

      Try forcing the NICs and switches to 100full to see if that makes a difference.
      Disable the AV temporarily.
      run Wireshark to see if there are any errors (you will see checksum entries as I think these are caused by the offload if it is on).
      Do you have symantec endpoint protection as well, I think this loads a teefer2 driver on the NIC too which can be disabled to test.
      cheers
      Andy

      Please read this before you post:


      Quis custodiet ipsos custodes?

      Comment


      • #4
        Re: Network transfer speeds drop a minute into the transfer

        gforceindustries: The NICs are sitting on standard PCI buses.

        AndyJG247: First of all, congrats on MVM
        Secondly, I did the test without any AV running and there are no switches in the way (The computers are directly interconnected).
        I'm going to try installing wireshark soon and I'll let you know what the results are.

        What are your thoughts about:
        Jumbo Frames, RSS, TCPA and TCPChimney?

        Thanks so far

        Comment


        • #5
          Re: Network transfer speeds drop a minute into the transfer

          Thanks.
          There shouldn't be much of an issue as long as your NICs are running the latest drivers but the wireshark should hopefully give some info.
          I would still try forcing them "slower" to see if it is just a problem with auto.
          cheers
          Andy

          Please read this before you post:


          Quis custodiet ipsos custodes?

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          • #6
            Re: Network transfer speeds drop a minute into the transfer

            Andy: I set both cards to work on 1000full and not auto - no change.
            lowering the speed to 100 would defeat the whole purpse of using gigabit NICs.

            Comment


            • #7
              Re: Network transfer speeds drop a minute into the transfer

              Originally posted by AndyJG247 View Post
              I would still try forcing them "slower" to see if it is just a problem with auto.
              Agreed. Relvox, are you aware that the PCI bus doesn't actually have sufficient bandwidth to support gigabit networking?
              Gareth Howells

              BSc (Hons), MBCS, MCP, MCDST, ICCE

              Any advice is given in good faith and without warranty.

              Please give reputation points if somebody has helped you.

              "For by now I could have stretched out my hand and struck you and your people with a plague that would have wiped you off the Earth." (Exodus 9:15) - I could kill you with my thumb.

              "Everything that lives and moves will be food for you." (Genesis 9:3) - For every animal you don't eat, I'm going to eat three.

              Comment


              • #8
                Re: Network transfer speeds drop a minute into the transfer

                I'm well aware of that. But even working on 30% to 50% of that gigabit (which I CAN get when transferring files smaller than around 5GB) is considerably preferrable to working on 100mbit.

                Comment


                • #9
                  Re: Network transfer speeds drop a minute into the transfer

                  I just wanted to see if it made a difference that is all. No harm in trying.
                  cheers
                  Andy

                  Please read this before you post:


                  Quis custodiet ipsos custodes?

                  Comment


                  • #10
                    Re: Network transfer speeds drop a minute into the transfer

                    I tried lowering the rate to 100Full and it indeed kept a steady utilization of 90%, but it's still inferior to what I'm trying to achieve, even with 50% utilization of 1000Full.

                    (Still no time to do wireshark)

                    Comment


                    • #11
                      Re: Network transfer speeds drop a minute into the transfer

                      What spec is the cable? Have you tried changing it maybe?
                      Will wait and see what the Wirshark shows
                      cheers
                      Andy

                      Please read this before you post:


                      Quis custodiet ipsos custodes?

                      Comment


                      • #12
                        Re: Network transfer speeds drop a minute into the transfer

                        I'll probably try it sometime around tomorrow.
                        The cable is a 2m brand new CAT6 cable, so I doubt that's the problem.

                        Comment


                        • #13
                          Re: Network transfer speeds drop a minute into the transfer

                          Same problem if you try a different cable?
                          Gareth Howells

                          BSc (Hons), MBCS, MCP, MCDST, ICCE

                          Any advice is given in good faith and without warranty.

                          Please give reputation points if somebody has helped you.

                          "For by now I could have stretched out my hand and struck you and your people with a plague that would have wiped you off the Earth." (Exodus 9:15) - I could kill you with my thumb.

                          "Everything that lives and moves will be food for you." (Genesis 9:3) - For every animal you don't eat, I'm going to eat three.

                          Comment


                          • #14
                            Re: Network transfer speeds drop a minute into the transfer

                            I didn't read the whole topic, but as I understood you have some kind of speed issues.
                            Because it's a gigabit you need to set it on auto/auto on the server and on the switch or the other switch.
                            If this doesn't work out you either need to replace any of the hardware items.

                            Well, because there aren't many items and you don't use a switch it can be either the NIC, the wire or guess what the other NIC.
                            Use a descent cable (buy one from the store) which is at least Cat 5e or higher.
                            Use descent NICs like Intel.
                            However, because you continuously are talking about the utilization I assume you're talking about the Taskmanager. Well it won't tell you that much.

                            Setup a FTP server (I don't care what you use but I like 3Cdaemon from 3com, nice and simple) and sends a file from one end to the other end.
                            If linux you can use SCP either.
                            anyhow, check out what the speed is.
                            FTP hasn't a huge overhead in the IP protocol so that's why I'm suggesting FTP.
                            Also make a sniffer trace to find out what is happening. It's truly possible that they are waiting on each other for an ACK as example.
                            Marcel
                            Technical Consultant
                            Netherlands
                            http://www.phetios.com
                            http://blog.nessus.nl

                            MCITP(EA, SA), MCSA/E 2003:Security, CCNA, SNAF, DCUCI, CCSA/E/E+ (R60), VCP4/5, NCDA, NCIE - SAN, NCIE - BR, EMCPE
                            "No matter how secure, there is always the human factor."

                            "Enjoy life today, tomorrow may never come."
                            "If you're going through hell, keep going. ~Winston Churchill"

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                            • #15
                              Re: Network transfer speeds drop a minute into the transfer

                              Hi,
                              Getting 500Mbps for 60 seconds or so is a lot of data, are you sure the bottleneck is the network? Is it possible to narrow down the size of file where this problem starts? I'm think the slow down may be related to the file system or disk sub-systems. Testing the files size where this slow down happens using Dumber's FTP setup would be productive IMO.
                              I don't know anything about (you or your) computers.
                              Research/test for yourself when listening to free advice.

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