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NIC Teaming Clarification

    Question

  • Hello,

    I need a little clarification on NIC Teaming.

    Switch Independent (SI): Multiple NICs connected to multiple routers. Provides fault tolerance even in Active/Active. Able to choose Active/Active or Active/Passive. Used as "one big pipe" so data is flowing in through both NICs at once. If large data is being transfered, such as in the case of migrating a VHDX, that large data transfer will be done one one NIC so packets aren't dropped. If multiple large data transfers are in-flight then all NICs in the team are used.

    Switch Dependent (SD): Multiple NICs connected to single switch. Only runs in Active/Active. Used as "one big pipe". Handles large data that same as SI.

    Link Aggregated Control Protocol (LCAP): Multiple NICs to single switch. Only runs in Active/Active. Used as "one big pipe", but negotiates traffic between the switch and the NIC team to reduce packet drops. The "one big pipe" analogy is true, but LCAP negotiating traffic reduces the throughput.

    I've done some reading on this and I'm just a little fuzzy on the difference between the SD and LCAP modes. Are the above definitions correct?

    TIA

    Tuesday, August 20, 2013 5:22 PM

Answers

  • Hi,

    As per my knowledge, two mode we can configure NIC Teaming in Windows Server 2012.

    1. Switch Independent Mode
    2. Switch Depend Mode

    Switched Independ Mode

    In this mode all the network adapters are connected to different switches provide alternate routes through the network. This configuration doesn't require switch to participate in the teaming. Since the switch is independent mode the switch doesnot know which adapter is part of the NIC Team. This again classified into two

    • Active / Active Mode 
    • Active / Passive Mode

    Switched Dependant Mode

    In this mode requires the switch to participate in the teaming. And also required all the NIC card to be connected to the same physical switch.

    This can be configured in Two modes

    • Generic / Static Mode
    • Dynamic Teaming

    In Generic Mode, administrator has to do the configuration on both the end ( NIC Card and Switch Side ). There is no additional protocol to assist the switch and the host to identify the incorrectly plugged cables.

    But in the case of Dynamic Mode, this is woring with the help of LACP protocol . As per theory, this protocol will automatically create the teaming. but in reality is not going to happen, we need to configure manually

    Regards

    Ravisankar K P

    MCSE, MCITP, MCSA, MCT, MCLC


    Regards, Ravisankar K P MCITP - EA/SA,MCT,MCLC,MCSA

    Saturday, August 24, 2013 5:26 AM
  • Hi,

    1. Generic/Static Mode is typically supported by server-class switches.

    2. IEEE 802.1ax use LADP , and LADP need manual configured to enable it.

    If IEEE 802.1ax is not supported, you will have to use Static Mode.

    You can refer to the following link for more information:

    NIC Teaming in Windows Server 2012 - Do I Need to Configure My Switch?

    http://blogs.technet.com/b/keithmayer/archive/2012/10/16/nic-teaming-in-windows-server-2012-do-i-need-to-configure-my-switch.aspx#.Uh1f-pDn_IU

    Hope this helps.

    Tuesday, August 27, 2013 12:03 PM
    Moderator

All replies

  • Tuesday, August 20, 2013 11:33 PM
  • Yep, read it already. I was looking for clarification on the NIC teaming differences in my original post that were raised by the article you supplied.
    Friday, August 23, 2013 1:56 PM
  • Hi,

    As per my knowledge, two mode we can configure NIC Teaming in Windows Server 2012.

    1. Switch Independent Mode
    2. Switch Depend Mode

    Switched Independ Mode

    In this mode all the network adapters are connected to different switches provide alternate routes through the network. This configuration doesn't require switch to participate in the teaming. Since the switch is independent mode the switch doesnot know which adapter is part of the NIC Team. This again classified into two

    • Active / Active Mode 
    • Active / Passive Mode

    Switched Dependant Mode

    In this mode requires the switch to participate in the teaming. And also required all the NIC card to be connected to the same physical switch.

    This can be configured in Two modes

    • Generic / Static Mode
    • Dynamic Teaming

    In Generic Mode, administrator has to do the configuration on both the end ( NIC Card and Switch Side ). There is no additional protocol to assist the switch and the host to identify the incorrectly plugged cables.

    But in the case of Dynamic Mode, this is woring with the help of LACP protocol . As per theory, this protocol will automatically create the teaming. but in reality is not going to happen, we need to configure manually

    Regards

    Ravisankar K P

    MCSE, MCITP, MCSA, MCT, MCLC


    Regards, Ravisankar K P MCITP - EA/SA,MCT,MCLC,MCSA

    Saturday, August 24, 2013 5:26 AM
  • Thanks, Ravisankar for your reply.

    Couple follow-up questions.

    1. In the case of the Generic/Static Mode configuration, when would an appropriate situation arrise where you would need to use this? Are there specific swtiches that don't support the Independent and/or Dependent teaming mode?
    2. Similarly, would LACP need to be used if the switch being used in the Team doesn't not support IEEE 802.1ax?

    Both Switch Independent/Dependent modes make sense as to when, and why, you would use them, but I'm unclear on when the others would be used.

    Thanks again for your reply.

    Dale

    Monday, August 26, 2013 1:47 PM
  • Hi,

    1. Generic/Static Mode is typically supported by server-class switches.

    2. IEEE 802.1ax use LADP , and LADP need manual configured to enable it.

    If IEEE 802.1ax is not supported, you will have to use Static Mode.

    You can refer to the following link for more information:

    NIC Teaming in Windows Server 2012 - Do I Need to Configure My Switch?

    http://blogs.technet.com/b/keithmayer/archive/2012/10/16/nic-teaming-in-windows-server-2012-do-i-need-to-configure-my-switch.aspx#.Uh1f-pDn_IU

    Hope this helps.

    Tuesday, August 27, 2013 12:03 PM
    Moderator
  • Thanks, Daniel. That blog article and everyones replies to this thread did help. I understnd it now.

    Maybe there is hope for me yet. :)

    Thursday, August 29, 2013 2:20 PM