In this video, Robert McMillen talks about creating a Network Load Balanced set of hosts. This allows administrators to be able to failover to one or more hosts in case of hardware or software problems, or times of maintenance. It is a great included Microsoft feature in Windows Server 2012 R2. This is a demonstration video that will walk through the different steps to achieve a network load balanced cluster. This allows administrators to be able to failover to one or more hosts in case of hardware or software problems, or times of maintenance. It is a great included Microsoft feature in Windows Server 2012 R2.
- [Voiceover] Network load balancing is a great feature in Windows Server 2012. It allows administrators to able to failover to one or more hosts in case of hardware or software problems, or times of maintenance. In a previous video we went over all the different features of network load balancing, so let's go ahead and install it. Let's start by going to the Add roles and features on our server and clicking Next. Let's scroll through the different menu items until we get to the features section.
When we do, we can scroll down to Network Load Balancing and check that box. Let's also check any Add Features items that come up and click Next, and now we'll install. Our installation is complete but now we need to restart, so let's go ahead and do that, and then we'll pick it up from there. Our server's been restarted, so let's go ahead and go to Tools, and open up Network Load Balancing Manager.
Let's create our first cluster. So right click and choose New Cluster. Now it's asking for the Host. It's going to be installed on the local host so we're just gonna go ahead and put in the name of the local host. Now we see two different network cards. We're going to choose the Ethernet card below and we're going to continue communicating with Ethernet 2 between this particular server and the rest of the network. Let's go ahead and click on that and Next. Now it's showing our Dedicated IP address we just chose, so let's go ahead and take a look at it by clicking on Edit.
You can see the Subnet mask, the IP address, and you can change it at this point if you want as well. We will click Cancel. We do want it to start up when the initial host state comes up, so let's go ahead and leave that as Started, and click Next. Now we want to pick a Cluster IP Address. This'll be an IP address that nobody else is using right now, so let's go ahead and choose one of those. We've already figured that out ahead of time. Now this has to be on the same subnet as the rest of our network, otherwise we won't be able to communicate with it.
Let's click OK and now we'll choose Next. It's now looking for a Full Internet name. We'll just go ahead and type in NLB for network load balancing. You have the option for the Cluster operation mode. By default, it's Unicast. In this particular instance, we're gonna go with Multicast because of the amount of network cards that we have on our server. We'll be talking about Unicast and Multicast and IGMP in an upcoming video. Let's go ahead and click Next. Now we have the opportunity to define port rules.
Let's click Edit. We're gonna discuss all about port rules in upcoming videos, but just to give you a hint of what's to come, you can start by looking at the top where it says the Cluster IP address. If we uncheck All we can see the IP addresses that we've chosen, and we've only chosen the one. So in this particular case, it doesn't matter if you choose All or just the individual. The next thing is the Port range and that is either the TCP or UDP port range that you plan to communicate between your network load balance cluster.
You can certainly lock down the port range so it only communicates over specific ports, or you can just leave it wide open and lock it down using the firewall. You can also choose between TCP or UDP or choose both. TCP is a connection-oriented protocol whereas UDP is connectionless. TCP would be slower but more reliable, and the opposite can be said of UDP. Then there's the Filtering modes as well as choosing Single host or disabling the port range. Again, we go into this in detail in upcoming videos, so we'll just go ahead and click OK, and we'll choose Finish.
Let's switch over to our domain controller for a second and make sure that we have NLB pointing to the cluster IP address that we just created. We're in our domain controller. Let's go ahead and choose Tools from the Server Manager, and choose DNS. Let's expand our Forward Lookup Zone and our Active Directory domain. Right click, choose New Host. The host's name is going to be NLB and the IP address is gonna be the one we created specifically for this task.
We can also choose to create a reverse record called a PTR record. That is optional in case you need to have reverse lookups to communicate in any particular instance. We don't, so let's go ahead and choose Add Host, and Done There is our NLB. Back in our Network Load Balance cluster, let's make sure that we can ping our name, the nlb.widgetllc.internal, which is our fully qualified domain name. Open up a command prompt, and there we have it.
We have a few options that we can choose now from our cluster. One is we can right click and can delete the host and start over again if we want. We can go into the Host Properties and make changes to items that we had already made changes to when we set this up. We can also choose the Host Status. It says Converged, which is exactly what we want to see. That means everything's working okay. We can go to Control Host and we can Start and Stop. We can also go to Drainstop, which allows it to failover to another NLB node.
We can also Suspend and Resume. Now that you have seen a demonstration of installing a network load balanced cluster on multiple hosts, you can now add the redundancy you need to your cluster-enabled network.
Note: The topics covered in this course map to the "Configure and manage high availability" domain for the MCSA: Configuring Advanced Windows Server 2012 Services exam (70-412).
- Configuring NLB
- Configuring affinity, port rules, and cluster operation mode
- Configuring failover cluster networks
- Configuring cluster storage
- Upgrading clusters
- Managing clusters
- Interacting with Hyper-V
- Adding virtual machines in Hyper-V
- Managing cluster roles, including ISCSI target, Hyper-V, and generic service roles
- Migrating clusters
- Configuring VM network health protection and drain