Teaming Intel PRO/1000 PT Dual in Windows Server 2008 R2

Teaming network cards/ports is generally a simple task, especially when using Intel cards and the wonderful PROSet tool. However, in Windows Server 2008 and 2008 R2 with the latest Intel drivers, it will be a little different…especially in my case with the PRO/1000 PT Dual PCI-Express card…

PROSet Application?

The PROSet tool is no longer a separate application. Instead, Intel has integrated the PROSet functionality into the device properties of the Intel network interface cards. In my situation, I had to install the 64bit, “Windows 7” driver PROWIN7X64.EXE. Obviously, this will install the latest drivers for the Intel NIC, and it will install the PROSet device manager adaption – and hopefully you specified to have the Advanced Network Services (ANS) installed too.

Open a properties window for your network interface card and click on the Configure button – you should notice Advanced, Link Speed – and if you are lucky Teaming and VLAN!

The Teaming Tab

For those that know they should have the Teaming tab available, but for some reason do not (verify full support), you may need to disable and re-enable one of the ports on the adapter for Teaming to show up.

For those that had the teaming tab visible, you must disable iSCSI Remote Boot. There are apparently two ways to configure this: one is through configuring the adapter during the Intel boot message during, well a system boot; two is through flashing the ROM on the adapter, removing the iSCSI Remote Boot functionality all together. I ended up performing the latter…

Removing the iSCSI Remote Boot

Download the latest Intel tool package, PROBOOT.EXE, for your controller, for me, it was PROBOOT.EXE. Extract these files onto a form of media that you can access from a DOS prompt and boot your computer into DOS. If you do not have a DOS boot disk, there are plenty of sites available that can assist you with making a DOS boot disk/CD. Once you have access to the files from PROBOOT, run the following:

1. “ibautil -all -flashenable”
     -reboot your computer into DOS again-
2. “ibautil -all -upgrade”
     -reboot into Windows-

Creating the Team

Now that you know where the PROSet “application” resides, the Intel Proset for Windows Device Manager, and you have the Teaming tab available, create the Team.

Unsure if my situation is unique, however I used 802.3ad LACP for my team and had to wait for the team virtual adapter to be completely initialized PRIOR to modifying the properties of that team. The first round, I modified the IPv4 address on the team before it was done initializing and it completely messed up the team interface, rendering it useless. Need an example? See below:

wtf

Credits

For the closure of this issue, I had the assistance of a gentleman from Intel and another user that had a similar problem:

http://communities.intel.com/message/60941

About aaron

IT is not just a job but also a passion. Everything I have accomplished, both personally and professionally, has been generally entertaining, bordering on fun. Some of my projects, such as working with SharePoint Services workflow actions in Visual Studio or building a custom iSCSI SAN using the OpenSolaris, ZFS and COMSTAR, has been quite rewarding. You may think nerd...I think developing a new trend!