HP NIC Teaming on 2008 Server Core

As part of an upcoming HyperV project, I was tasked with installing 2008 R2 Server Core with the HyperV role on an HP DL360 G7 server.

So I started out by loading the Windows OS just like normal… with the HP Smart Start Boot CD, the only difference was that I selected the Datacenter “Core” install instead of the normal GUI install. Then I sat back and waited after it was done I logged in and installed the HyperV role as well as joined the machine to the domain. I was able to remotely connect to the server and create a virtual machine to install SCVMM on (which wasn’t too hateful).

But then I got to thinking… Can I only assign one NIC to a virtual network? What the heck !?

Obviously, with the GUI installed I would just Team the NIC’s with the HP tool and be on my way… but how the heck was I going to team the NICs when I had no GUI to run the tool from?

Well after some checking around other sites I read that the HP Network Config Utility was installable on Server Core and could be launched, could it be? Plus because I used the Smart Start CD there was no need to go out and download the software and install it because it was already there, I just needed to run the following command:

Then after a short pause, I was presented with:

After that, it was pretty easy to set up a team with NICs 3 and 4 on the server! After doing that the NIC Team was available to assign to a Virtual Network.

The two problems with this method of teaming the NICs:

  1. There will be finger pointing when it doesn’t work (Microsoft <—> HP) and we all know how well HP NIC teaming software works these days.
  2. The team shows up as an HP Virtual Adapter #1 in the adapter list… there is no way to tell which nics are in the team, this will make management a pain once you have several teams in the same box.


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9 Responses to "HP NIC Teaming on 2008 Server Core"

  1. Thank you for this, trying to find documentation about how to open the network utility on server core is the proverbial needle in the haystack.

  2. This is a nice writeup. I would recommend renaming the virtual adapter to the two physical NICs (ie. NIC01_NIC02) as you create teams. That will allow you to know which NICs are a part of what team at a glance.

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