NIC teaming, also known as Load Balancing and FailOver (LBFO), is the ability to operate multiples network adaptors as a single network adaptor from the perspective of the system. NIC Teaming provides two key capabilities:
- Bandwidth aggregation: Because NIC Teaming allows you to use multiple network adaptors as though they were a single adaptor, throughput is increased by combining the bandwidth of the team.
- Traffic Failover: Protection against NIC failures by automatically moving the traffic to the remaining operational NICs that are member of the team.
In the past, NIC teaming was handled by the NIC vendor’s driver and management. However, you were typically tied to a particular NIC manufacturer, so you cannot always team together NICs from multiple vendors. Windows Server 2012 includes an integrated NIC Teaming solution that is easy to setup and manage, is vendor independent, and that supports the performance optimizations provided by the underlying NICs.
You can configure NIC from the Server Manager as follow:
- In the console tree, click Local Server. In the details pane, Properties section click the “Disable” link next to NIC Teaming.
- In the NIC Teaming Management interface, ADAPTERS AND INTERFACES section, select the NICs you want to team, right click and select Add to New Team.
- On the New Team Dialog, enter the name of the team and click OK. (You can also modify you NIC selection)
- Now the team is created. It is easy to make changes to the team through the Team TASKS dropdown or by right-clicking on the team. If you want to modify the team to be an active/standby team, right click on the team and select Properties