Etherchannel - to a server?

mattsthe2mattsthe2 Member Posts: 304
Ok so i know you can bundle links together and ive done that to other switches but is it possible to do it to a server.

I just had a call from a server guy and he has two ethernet links and he is doing the aggregation on his side (server side) and asked me if its possible to do it on my Cisco Switch side.

If it is how would one do that?


  • kryollakryolla Member Posts: 785
    LACP is the standard for cross platform or you can force it on. Then set the port channel to access instead of trunking
    Studying for CCIE and drinking Home Brew
  • networker050184networker050184 Mod Posts: 11,962 Mod
    It is possible. You need NICs that support etherchannel. You should be able to team the NICs on your server and choose the etherchannel option. I don't have a link for the configuration, but it should be configurable from the adapter properties of the NIC.
    An expert is a man who has made all the mistakes which can be made.
  • mikej412mikej412 Member Posts: 10,086 ■■■■■■■■■■
  • NetwurkNetwurk Member Posts: 1,155 ■■■■■□□□□□
    Cool subject - and thanks for the link Mike. I'll have to try the config on one of my servers. It has a second NIC on the mobo that I currently have disabled.
  • APAAPA Member Posts: 959
    For our systems we use LACP (802.3ad) link aggregation....

    On the server side obviously create a virtual team which contains the NIC's

    On the switch/switches (you can cross-stack with 3750's due to stackwise capabilities) we create the virtual port (port-channel) which you link the physical switchports to via the channel-group command.

    Commands like switchport access and spanning-tree etc must be set on the port-channel and the switchports actively linked to this virtual port........ If there are mis-matches certain physical ports may be suspended from the channel.

    Now if your using LACP I tend to use the channel-group (number) mode active command as this command enables LACP negotiation it will not wait to receive LACP packets it will actively seek to negotiate an LACP channel via sending out it's own LACP packets.

    Ensure your using at least 2950 switches as the port-channel commands are not supported on the earlier model switches (2924,3500XL series....)

    Some servers do support etherchannel though so it may be worthwhile your time doing some investigation as to what your servers support....... LACP seems to be the standard platform for server channelling though.....

    You have to be aware though there are different types of teaming.... there is active/standby mode(failover) where one nic is active and the other offline until the active fails.

    Then there is obviously the bandwidth link aggregation mode I mentioned above which enables both NIC's as active so you have a 2Gbps active link (if you have 2 1Gbps NIC's in the team)......

    Also you can have the teaming setup for load balancing across two seperate links....... Really depends on what driver software and NIC"s you have your servers.

    I find the intel management software is much better than the Broadcom BACS software......

    Hope this helps...... :)

    CCNA | CCNA:Security | CCNP | CCIP
  • mattsthe2mattsthe2 Member Posts: 304
    thanks guys...that clears that one is up.
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