Two Ethernet ports (LAN) onboard is a feature that has been on some motherboards for over a decade.. It started when people wanted to share the Internet via cable or ADSL with a second PC, but routers were still not as common. Over time routers became popular, but the second LAN remains included on some cards. A ASUS ROG Crosshair VIII Hero Wi-Fi Motherboard, whose review I did a few days ago here on Skooter Blog, is one.
Often the resource ends up being underused, as Internet connections in Brazil rarely exceed 1 Gbps, and a single door Gigabit Ethernet can handle. But those who move large amounts of data on a local network can benefit from the second Ethernet port.
this is my case, because I do data synchronization and backup on NAS Synology Diskstation DS918+, who has also shown here in Skooter Blog, and which also has two Ethernet ports. Furthermore, I also have a NAS Synology Diskstation DS214, also already shown here on the Skooter Blog, which also gets some backup. Por fim, there are also occasional copies of data from one device to another, also local.
Just connecting the two Ethernet ports from the motherboard or NAS to the Ethernet switch doesn't do much., as typically each one will have a different IP and transfers will focus on just one of them, unless the IP is explicitly set. But some switches support port aggregation, so that two or more ports are combined to work as if it were just one, but with a flow equivalent to the sum of the flow of all.
This type of resource has several names like teaming, trunking, bonding, among others. There are also different patterns used to implement this feature., like LACP protocol (Link Aggregation Control Protocol) and various proprietary solutions.
My switch é um Tp-Link TL-SG1016DE, also already shown here on the Skooter Blog. It offers link aggregation, but only statically, as defined no protocol IEEE 802.3ad. It is necessary to choose the ports that will make up the trunk (trunk) and then connect the two Ethernet cables coming from the same device to the selected ports. Give way, I made a trunk for the DS918 + and another for the ASUS ROG Crosshair VIII Hero:
No case of ASUS ROG Crosshair VIII Hero Wi-Fi Motherboard, the Windows 10 has ways to do the aggregation of links natively, through commands Powershell. But if at least one of the network interfaces is from Intel, it's easier to install the Intel drivers and software and make the aggregation through the graphical interface of the Intel PROSet Adapter Configuration Utility. In it the resource is called Teaming, and just select the interfaces that will be part of the team, being able to define which will be the primary, secondary, etc. You also need to select the aggregation type., which in my case is the Static Link Aggregation:
It is worth noting that, despite one of the network interfaces of the ASUS ROG Crosshair VIII Hero be from 2,5 Gbps, the switch it's just Gigabit Ethernet, limiting the flow in 1 Gbps. Furthermore, various aggregation methods only work with equal throughput links, so that the aggregate flow will be double the flow of the narrowest link.
How each device chooses which interface it will use for each connection varies depending on the implementation. This is usually done with hashes based on MAC addresses (layer 2 – link), IP addresses (layer 3 – network), or even on TCP/UDP port numbers (layer 4 – transport). Unfortunately, I couldn't find information on how the implementation is done on each of my devices..
What I realized is that if I'm, for example, copying a large file from mine NAS Synology Diskstation DS918+ for my PC, the flow is around 111 MB/s (888 Mbps), typical of using a single interface Gigabit Ethernet, that is, a single TCP connection will apparently not use more than one interface. Even two transfers being made from the same NAS are limited, so possibly one of my equipment is doing the hash only on level 2 or 3 (MACs e IPs) without considering port numbers.
On the other hand, when copying a file from mine at the same time NAS Synology Diskstation DS918+ and another one of mine NAS Synology Diskstation DS214 the total flow oscillated around 169 MB/s (1352 Mbps) proving that both interfaces were being used at the same time.
Note that o DS214 has only one network interface, is a slower equipment, and it is not directly connected to the TL-SG1016DE. actually there is 5 saltos Gigabit Ethernet (at link level) to get to it (four switches on the way) from my PC. Even copying a file from it alone, the transfer does not saturate a connection Gigabit Ethernet, oscillating just around 70 MB/s (560 Mbps). Give way, it is possible that with a second faster equipment it would be possible to get closer to the limit of 2 Gbps of the two interfaces added together.
I then tried to transfer three files at the same time., from three different sources, the two from the NAS and one more file from the External HD that is on the MSI Cubes, also already shown here on the Skooter Blog. Note that o MSI Cubes is there too 4 saltos Gigabit Ethernet (at link level) from my PC, and all switches in the path are shared with the DS214, so the two together could not exceed the limit of Gigabit Ethernet throughput limits. De fate, the two added up around 90 MB/s while the DS918 + reached others 90 MB/s, totaling around 180 MB/s (1440 Mbps).
I then realized that at this point the bottleneck was my PC's HDD that was receiving the files. I did the same test by writing the files to the SSD Sandisk Ultra m.2 NVMe 3D 1TB 2280, also already shown here on the Skooter Blog, and the flow jumped to the 204 MB/s (1632 Mbps).
I could go further, do other tests besides copying files, using protocols other than SMB, with devices all connected to the same switch, but I think it's already been possible to get an idea of the flow gains. In my simple tests, the earnings went from 80%, o que é bastante considerável.
É claro que no dia-a-dia eu dificilmente vou estar copiando três arquivos de três fontes diferentes, mas há situações comuns com potencial de ganho, como estar realizando tarefas de backups automáticos em ambos os NAS (com limite de 1 Gbps para um) e ainda baixando algo da Internet (com limite de 200 Mbps), for example.
Share this article with your friends if you liked . Skooter Blog needs your help to continue to exist.