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NIC Teaming and iSCSI MPIO

    Question

  • I'm a bit confused about the support for NIC Teams and iSCSI MPIO... I'm using Windows 2012's native NIC teaming and have enable MPIO without doing any real reconfiguration. The mpclaim command would suggest i have two paths to my storage - and the LUN is appearing once. Everything looks good to me...

    However, from what I read this sounds like a non-supported configuration. Sadly, I keep chasing my tail on this one - and finding old support/config guides referring to Win2008 (which of course, didn't support native teams - on vendor ones - which meant the support was with Intel/Broadcom not Microsoft). 

    From what I can gather what IS support is 2xNICs, each with the their own IP configurations - with the session added into MPIO...

    What exactly is supported/not support with Win2K12? And will this be changing in the R2 release?

    Regards
    Lou

    I wish that I was born a thousand years ago 
    I wish that I'd sail the darkened seas 
    On a great big clipper ship 
    Going from this land here to that 
    In a sailor's suit and cap 
    Away from the big city 
    Where a man can not be free 
    Of all of the evils of this town 
    And of himself, and those around 
    Oh, and I guess that I just don't know 
    Oh, and I guess that I just don't know 

    Thursday, July 04, 2013 11:33 AM

Answers

  • Hi,

    Thank you for the post.

    Q:"What exactly is supported/not support with Win2K12?"

    A: "When iSCSI is used with dedicated NICs, then using any teaming solution is not recommended and MPIO/DSM should be used. But when iSCSI is used with shared NICs, those shared NICs can be teamed and will be supported as long as it’s being used with Microsoft’s Windows Server 2012 NIC Teaming (LBFO) solution."

    Regards,


    Nick Gu - MSFT

    Tuesday, July 09, 2013 6:48 AM
    Moderator

All replies

  • Afterwards I stumbled upon this blogpost that seems to clarify:

    http://blogs.technet.com/b/askpfeplat/archive/2013/07/04/3559195.aspx

    What's not clear is if MSFT NIC Teaming on its own is all that is needed, or whether MSFT NIC Teaming + MPIO is what is required... My guess the later, without MPIO there's no MPclaim command to validate the paths availability...

    Lou

    I'm waiting for my man
    Twenty-six dollars in my hand
    Up to Lexington, 125
    Feel sick and dirty, more dead than alive
    I'm waiting for my man

    Thursday, July 04, 2013 7:25 PM
  • Hi,

    Thank you for the post.

    Q:"What exactly is supported/not support with Win2K12?"

    A: "When iSCSI is used with dedicated NICs, then using any teaming solution is not recommended and MPIO/DSM should be used. But when iSCSI is used with shared NICs, those shared NICs can be teamed and will be supported as long as it’s being used with Microsoft’s Windows Server 2012 NIC Teaming (LBFO) solution."

    Regards,


    Nick Gu - MSFT

    Tuesday, July 09, 2013 6:48 AM
    Moderator
  • I'm not certain how 2012 deals with this, but logically, MPIO assumes multiple, independent paths (2+ NIC's) while Teaming (anyone's) creates a single logical NIC from multiple physical NIC's with higher throughput. Since it seems that MS recommends teaming over MPIO in 2012, I'd say that unless you really have multiple physical paths to the iSCSI devices and can make use of MPIO, using teaming to get the highest network thoughput would be the better choice, especially since this will apply to all network traffic, not just the iSCSI.
    Wednesday, July 10, 2013 6:04 PM