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Port Trunking

Mattias Johansson_1
Occasional Contributor

Port Trunking

Hi,

I’m trying to setup a port trunk between a server, HP ProLiant ML370R G4 (Windows 2003 server) and a switch HP 4160GL. I have 2 HP Gbit NICs (1 single port and 1 dual port) in the server and I’m using HP Network Configuration Utility version 7.80.

In the switch, I can choose between LACP/FEC/Trunk and in HP Network Configuration Utility between:
Automatic (Recommended)
802.3ad Dynamic with Fault Tolerance
Switch-assisted Load Balancing with Fault Tolerance (SLB)
Transmit Load Balancing with Fault Tolerance (TLB)

How should I setup the switch and the server for best performance/load balancing?

Regards,
Matti
6 REPLIES
Gyula Matics_1
Honored Contributor

Re: Port Trunking

Set the switch to LACP and the server side to automatic and the switch and the server should negotiate the best way they can work together. If it does not work, then try 802.3ad on the server. (LACP is part of 802.3ad)
Andy Gallacher
Occasional Advisor

Re: Port Trunking

Mattias,

It depends on what you are trying to accomplish!

Network Fault Tolerence (NFT): Is two or more server NIC's acting as one logical NIC. There is one primary NIC with the remaining NIC(s) in standby mode in the event that the primary NIC fails. You can connect the Server NIC's to multiple switches for a greater degree of fault tolerence but only one NIC is active. There is no special swicth configuration necessary other then STP if you have multiple switches creating a loop.

Transmitt Load Balancing (TLB): This mode gives you everything that NFT does but now outbound server traffic is load balanced across the teamed NIC's. Other then STP nothing special needs to be configured on the switches

Switch Assitted Load Balancing (SLB): Is just like trunking, all server NIC's must connect to a single switch. The ports on the switch must be configured for trunking. As for the trunking mode it depends on the server teaming. I have seen both FEC and LACP (802.3ad). Check the teaming manual for your server's software and match the switches configuration.

As a side note I'm not one for automatic anything. I like to configure device(s) to behave the way I want them to.

Hope this helps
Andy
There is nothing more permanent then a temporary solution
Jeff Brownell
Valued Contributor

Re: Port Trunking

Please review Management and Configuration Guide, chapter 12 (port trunknig) for full details on the 4100's Trunking capabilities and caveats.
ftp://ftp.hp.com/pub/networking/software/59906023-1004-Management-Guide.pdf
SCOOTER
Esteemed Contributor

Re: Port Trunking

Matti,

I do not recommend using LACP. If you want to try it, then turn off LACP on all other ports on the switch.
LACP is just a problem protocol. But hey that's just my point of view. Maby it works great for others.

Regards,

SCOOTER
Mattias Johansson_1
Occasional Contributor

Re: Port Trunking

Hi,

Thanks for the tips!

I have read the manual, but I still cannot decide which port trunking method to use.

Because the switch, server and NICs are from HP I was hoping that there was a recommended configuration for this.

I am not interested in fault tolerance because the server is acting as a Ghost-server. So I will have 10-50 clients downloading maybe 5-7 different images at the same time. The main purpose is bandwidth.
That is why I want to setup at 3GBit trunk between the server and the switch.

It looks like I have two options?
1: Set the switch to FEC and the server to Switch-assisted Load Balancing with Fault Tolerance (SLB).
2: Set the switch to LACP and the server to 802.3ad Dynamic with Fault Tolerance.

Regards,
Mattias

Les Ligetfalvy
Esteemed Contributor

Re: Port Trunking

I too, dislike LACP to be on by default and disable it. I also disike auto-anything on dedicated ports.

From what I hear, it sounds like TLB would give you what you need without worrying about the finer details of STP.

It was Andy that sent me a whitepaper on NIC teaming but I cannot find it on any HP site to link to. Andy, do you have a link to it?