Link Aggregation, how do I make it work

stewartjm

Limp Gawd
Joined
Sep 10, 2003
Messages
400
I have the following hardware:

1. My main file server, a Tyan Toledo i3010W (S5197) with dual Intel NICs, running Ubuntu Server 64-bit.
2. My main workstation, a Gigabyte GA-EX38-DS4 with dual Realtek NICs, running Vista x64.
3. A Procurve 1800-24g switch.

I currently achieve 90+% of gigabit throughput with iperf, and 40-80% with samba to single disks between these 2 machines.

I'm pretty sure all of the above hardware supports Link Aggregation. And that I should be able to achieve 80-90% of 2 gigabit throughput, if it's all configured properly.

I've seen plenty of articles on how to setup link aggregation for Linux, so I'm pretty sure I can make the Ubuntu box work.

Looking in the configuration for 1800-24g, it looks like it might be as simple as checking LACP Enable, on the four ports, in the Trunks->LACP Setup settings page. Or is it more involved?

That's leaves the Vista box. I've seen some reference to the Realtek drivers supporting Link Aggregation. But I have no clue how to turn it on.

Assuming the hardware is up the the task, does anyone have any advice about how to go about configuring everything?
 

xphil3

[H]ard|Gawd
Joined
Nov 11, 2005
Messages
1,212
Assuming the hardware is up the the task, does anyone have any advice about how to go about configuring everything?
ftp://ftp.hp.com/pub/networking/software/Mgmt-Oct2005-59906023-Chap12.pdf <--- This might help, its for the 28xx but I would be surprised if the trunking and channeling is configured differently.

Personally, I wouldn't go with LACP as Ive seen way to many problems between host os's and the switch side. It looks like the 28xx supports static channeling and I would venture to say yours does too. Go with that. You gain nothing going with LACP honestly, besides dynamic channeling.
 

epimetheus

Gawd
Joined
Jun 20, 2004
Messages
815
I've got an 1800-24G that I am running LACP on. It works great with dual Intel NICs. My server has dual Broadcom at the moment, and while it works with the Broadcom NICs, it doesn't work as well as it did with the Intel. With the Intel NICs windows actually reported the link speed as 2Gbps. With the Braodcom now it only reports 1Gbps, but I know it's teamed. I think the Broadcom drivers are only giving me failover, not load balancing.

The more important thing is do you have the disk infrastructure to push more than 1 Gbps (125MB/s)? If you've got RAID arrays on both comps, then great, but if not, link aggregation isn't going to get you any noticable performance gains. The fastest single drives available right now aren't pushing more than about 130MB/s. Not sure about the SAS drives though, I don't have any experience with those.
 
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