Guide to NIC Teaming in Windows Server 2012

NIC teaming is one of the out of the box feature available on Server 2012. Earlier NIC teaming was only possible with additional hardware support and a bit complicated configuration process but from Server 2012 it has become a piece of cake.

Advantages of NIC Teaming in Server 2012

  • Network connectivity is possible even if one of the network adapter fails.
  • Enabling higher bandwidth by combining multiple adapters.
  • Configuration is possible with combination of different NIC hardware models.
  • Supports up to 32 NIC adapters in one team.

Let’s see the configuration.

Here I have 3 NIC available on my server (It’s all virtual adapters with 10 GB b/w) Once you have this setup I would suggest that observe the NIC adapters configurations. If it’s a DHCP/Static configuration make a note of it as you can later compare the settings.

1) Open the server manager.

2) Right click on the Server Name  and select Configure NIC Teaming.

NIC-1

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3) Now select the network adapters and create a New team. I am calling it as Team 1.

NIC-2

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4) If you click on the Additional Properties drop-down you will see an option to configure the Standby adapter. (We have selected the Ethernet 2 as standby adapter)

Click on the image to enlarge

Click on the image to enlarge

5) Once you click OK the configuration will complete and you will be provided with an NIC Team.

6) Here you will see 2 adapters are showing as active and one is showing as Standby. Standby adapter will become active when there is a failure of active adapter ie Ethernet and Ethernet 3.

Click on the image to enlarge

Click on the image to enlarge

7) If you hop over to the Network connection window you will see a new adapter named Team 1. This will have the IP configuration and also you will notice the available network bandwidth is 20 GB.

Click on the image to enlarge

Click on the image to enlarge

Summary

So with the NIC teaming configuration here, we have achieved more bandwidth + high network availability.

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