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Advantages Win Server 2003 network be using NLB?

By mikeliketrike ·
I have 4 separate servers in my network of 60 +/- users:
- Terminal Server & ThinClient Server (Win Server 2003)
- DC & Exchange (Win Server 2003)
- Primary DNS & File Server (Win Server 2003)
- Print & Backup & AntiVirus (Win Server 2000)

We're currently not utilizing NLB. If I understand it correctly, it would distribute NIC traffic through the servers rather than having a majority of it going through the Terminal Server and File Server. Is that right?

The users connecting to the Terminal Server are experiencing intermittent speed/performance issues and I'm looking for network load balancing to help resolve them.

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Re: NLB

by christianshiflet In reply to Advantages Win Server 200 ...

NLB would really only benefit you if you had multiple TS servers in a cluster to balance between. Since all of your servers have separate functions, this really won't help you for what you are describing. You can read a brief overview here: http://technet.microsoft.com/en-us/library/bb742455.aspx if you are interested.

I hope this helps. Let me know if you have further questions. Thanks.

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If NLB isn't the answer... any suggestions?

by mikeliketrike In reply to Re: NLB

If implementing NLB in my network setup wouldn't resolve the root issue (intermittent speed/performance issues on a TS 2003 Server), any suggestions to what I could look into?

We have 30 +/- users connected to the server at any given time. 20 +/- are connected through individual Thin Clients, the remaining through RDP on XP machines. The machine is using 2 Intel Xeon E5310 @ 1.6Ghz and 10 GB of RAM. It's using a 100Mbps NIC card. The users typically do "light" office work in the MS Office 2003 apps and do casual browsing, there aren't any heavy users.

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Re: slowdowns

by christianshiflet In reply to If NLB isn't the answer.. ...

A few questions:

What version of Windows 2k3 are you using (standard, enterprise, datacenter...)? 32 or 64 bit?

Are your users all local or are they accessing the server over the Internet?

Do you have multiple NICs in your server?

Besides the physical RAM, what are your virtual mem settings? (does the server use a range or a set amount)

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specs

by mikeliketrike In reply to Re: slowdowns

First of all, thanks for your quick response.

- It's Win 2k3 Enterprise 32 bit
- A majority are local, but there are some accessing it over the Internet
- It's using one NIC
- VM: 1.5GB (15000 MB) Initial and 3GB (30000 MB) Max

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Re: specs

by christianshiflet In reply to specs

Firstly, I would change your vm to be a static amount (same initial and max). As the server adjusts the vm over time, it can cause the server to stop responding for a period of, perhaps, 10-15 seconds.

Secondly, since you stated you have 10 gb or RAM, have you enabled, or verified that your server has already enabled, PAE to use it all? Otherwise you are only really using 4 gb (http://msdn.microsoft.com/en-us/library/aa366796%28VS.85%29.aspx)(http://msdn.microsoft.com/en-us/library/aa366778%28VS.85%29.aspx).

Thirdly, you could add a second NIC and create a team, if your switch supports that, to add some bandwidth to just that server. It won't help your remote users but may help your local users, if bandwidth is ever an issue.

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