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Server 2003 Network Bridging

    Question

  • I have two servers running Windows Server 2003 and they are the main exchange servers for my location. Each server has 2 1-Gb/s NICs installed but we are currently only using one NIC per server. When we go and try to bridge the NICs we lose all connections to the exchange servers. Now i noticed that when i go to the computer managment i can set the speeds/duplex of each NIC. Would setting each NIC to auto be advantageous over leaving them at 1000 MB full? Also what could cause loss of connection to that server when we bridge them?

    Monday, March 19, 2012 4:13 PM

Answers

  • Why would you want to bridge the NICs?  Are you trying to create a load balanced or fail-over solution?  If so, bridging the NICs is not the way to do that.  When you bridge NICs together, what you are doing is turning the windows computer into a Network Switch, with regards to its NICs.  If you have hosts that are connected to the segment for NIC 1 and other hosts connected to the segment for NIC2, you can have all of hte hosts on the same logical segment and your computer will bridge them together.  I cant think of any other reason why you are attempting to bridge these NICs, so please elaborate and clarify...

    Whether you set your NICs to auto or a specific setting is up to you.  If you set them to auto on the server, make sure the switch port is also set to auto.  If you specifiy a setting, make sure the switch port is set to the same configuration.  Do not set one to auto and the other to a specific setting.


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    • Marked as answer by Tiger Li Wednesday, March 21, 2012 6:32 AM
    Monday, March 19, 2012 4:25 PM
  • What you need to investigate is network "teaming" not bridging.  To implement networking teaming, you need to have NICs that support it and also software installed to manage the NICs.  HP servers come with this software, and I believe that some Intel NICs support it as well.

    Guides and tutorials, visit ITGeared.com.

    itgeared.com facebook twitter youtube

    • Marked as answer by Tiger Li Wednesday, March 21, 2012 6:32 AM
    Monday, March 19, 2012 4:37 PM

All replies

  • Why would you want to bridge the NICs?  Are you trying to create a load balanced or fail-over solution?  If so, bridging the NICs is not the way to do that.  When you bridge NICs together, what you are doing is turning the windows computer into a Network Switch, with regards to its NICs.  If you have hosts that are connected to the segment for NIC 1 and other hosts connected to the segment for NIC2, you can have all of hte hosts on the same logical segment and your computer will bridge them together.  I cant think of any other reason why you are attempting to bridge these NICs, so please elaborate and clarify...

    Whether you set your NICs to auto or a specific setting is up to you.  If you set them to auto on the server, make sure the switch port is also set to auto.  If you specifiy a setting, make sure the switch port is set to the same configuration.  Do not set one to auto and the other to a specific setting.


    Guides and tutorials, visit ITGeared.com.

    itgeared.com facebook twitter youtube

    • Marked as answer by Tiger Li Wednesday, March 21, 2012 6:32 AM
    Monday, March 19, 2012 4:25 PM
  • We are trying to do a load balancing act due to using 2 servers for over 10K users it gets congested. Thanks for the suggestions :)

    Monday, March 19, 2012 4:33 PM
  • What you need to investigate is network "teaming" not bridging.  To implement networking teaming, you need to have NICs that support it and also software installed to manage the NICs.  HP servers come with this software, and I believe that some Intel NICs support it as well.

    Guides and tutorials, visit ITGeared.com.

    itgeared.com facebook twitter youtube

    • Marked as answer by Tiger Li Wednesday, March 21, 2012 6:32 AM
    Monday, March 19, 2012 4:37 PM