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  • Windows2003 with multiple NICs

    Hi, I am running windows 2003 server and I have two Dell servers and each of them has 6 NIC cards. I'd like to install AD. I have around 1,500 XP clients. I'd like to combine all of the NICs card on one together to take advantage of the bandwidth. So I tried to bridge them all into one connection and I noticed this.

    1. Windows 2003 wont' allow me to install DNS using that "bridged" connection ( I already assign static IP ) information

    2. When I tested the bandwith by downloading stuffs from the server. I only see one connection active ( the light is on on the taskbar when I have six of them display when connected). So it seemed that the bridge feature can't combine the bandwidth

    My NICs are IntelPro Server Adapters.

    If you have any suggestion. Please help. Thanks alot!
    Teamwork

  • #2
    You need to use the Intel Proset utility to "Team" the nics into 1 virtual NIC. What you described is Link Aggregation.

    The combining of multiple adapters into a single channel to provide greater bandwidth. This only works widens bandwidth to multiple destination addresses. ALB mode provides aggregation for transmission only while RLB and LA/FEC/GEC/3ad modes provide aggregation in both directions. FEC/GEC/LA/3ad modes require a matching aggregation capable switch, while ALB and RLB modes can be used with any switch.
    http://support.intel.com/support/net.../CS-009747.htm

    -----

    This should take care of the speed issue you described but I'm unsure if you'll be able to use DNS with this configuration.
    Andrew

    ** Remember to give credit where credit is due and leave reputation points sigpic where appropriate **

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    • #3
      ahinson

      Thank you very much for your help. I do appreciate it. You have a nice day
      Teamwork

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      • #4
        but I'm unsure if you'll be able to use DNS with this configuration
        We are using teaming on our DCs. Works like a charm. You have only one TCP/IP interface, so this setup can not confuse DNS as in the case of multi-homed boxes.
        Guy Teverovsky
        "Smith & Wesson - the original point and click interface"

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        • #5
          Thanks Antidot for your feedback. At first I was trying Adaptive Load Balancing (ALB) mode and it works very well. Yes I will only be able get the downstream through 1 NIC and Intel ANS software will handle the upstream of the server by sending packets through multiple NICs.

          By using Adaptive Load Balancing I don't have to modify the switch configuration at all. What I did was I assigned every NIC a static IP before I run the Intel ANS software. And then after I finished installing the software I assigned the "team" interface another static IP. Every works fine. Yes I can run DNS and stuffs through the team interface.

          I called up my networking guy yesterday and he said that my switch does support Intel Link Aggregation (LA), Cisco* Fast EtherChannel™ (FEC) and Gig EtherChannel™ (GEC) feature. So I'm thinking of going with it but I'm not sure how I am going to assign IP addresses to the NICs and to the team interface because all of them will act as one. I'm seeking advices from you. Thanks alot and you have a nice day.
          Teamwork

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          • #6
            Originally posted by Guy (aka Antid0t)
            but I'm unsure if you'll be able to use DNS with this configuration
            We are using teaming on our DCs. Works like a charm. You have only one TCP/IP interface, so this setup can not confuse DNS as in the case of multi-homed boxes.

            Do you enable DHCP or assign static IPs to the NICs before joining them to the team? I have one problem over here. If I leave them use DHCP then everything is fine. If I assign static IP entries to them and after they join the team then I run the test, IntelPro Set software will complain about STP protocol on cisco switch.

            Thanks!
            Teamwork

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            • #7
              To Ahinson and Guy,
              The switch I have here is Cisco 2948G and it doesn't support FEC/GEC feature so I have to go with ALB mode ( receive by one interface and send on multiple interfaces). Like I said after I enabled that mode and tested the settings, IntelProset Software was complaining about STP enable on network and it suggested me to disable it. I can't do that. Later on when I browsed to "Advanced" Tab and I saw the explaination of "Activation Delay" and its value is set to 0. So I called my networking guy and asked him about STP settings on my switch and he said by default it's ranging from 30 to 45 sec. By going with the suggestion of Intel Proset I change the value of Activation Delay to 90 and it works like a charm now
              He also explained to me how STP functions in a network.

              I include the screenshot and explaination so you can take a look @ it.

              Thanks again bro.



              Specifies the delay period (in seconds) before a member regaining link will be activated in a team. Note: If Spanning Tree Protocol (STP) will be enabled on the switch, set this parameter to 2x the value of the "STP forwarding delay" configured on the switch.

              Default = 0
              Range = 0 - 100
              Teamwork

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