The LoadMaster, like many other network appliances, can combine multiple interfaces to create one logical interface. The LoadMaster also can receive traffic from multiple VLANs over a single physical interface.
Customers who need additional throughput, beyond the 1GB/second that each interface provides, have the option to bond interfaces together to create a link that will offer greater throughput than a single physical interface. The most current LoadMaster firmware supports 802.3ad and active-backup bond types.
Note: Active-backup will only provide a redundant link, as it will only use one interface and reserve the additional interfaces in the case of active interface failure. On the other hand, IEEE standard 802.3ad will offer redundancy as well as increased throughput.
When selecting which interface to begin bonding, ensure to pick the interface with the lowest index. The LoadMaster can only bond interfaces that have a higher index than the originally bonded interface. To incorporate a bonded interface on your local switch, first ensure that your switches support bonding, which is often referred to as NIC teaming. Typically, bonding the interfaces on your switch is the only network change that is necessary.
As networking evolves and increases in complexity, the use of VLANs is more and more commonplace. Often integrating VLAN traffic can be difficult and painstaking. Fortunately the LoadMaster has attempted to simplify this process.
Note: When configuring a LoadMaster interface that you know will be passing tagged VLAN traffic, it is important to note if the traffic will be from multiple VLANs, or just a single VLAN. If only passing a single VLAN's traffic over a specific interface, there will be no need for a special configuration on this interface. You will be able to supply the LoadMaster’s interface with IP addresses and that will be the end of the configuration. Ensure that the local switch is set to access mode for this interface.
If a single physical link will be used to pass along several VLANs worth of traffic, the LoadMaster needs to be configured to do so. Choose the interface to be used and then create many VLANs that will use this single interface. Before creating individual VLANs, you will need to ensure that the interface you will be using, does not currently have any IP addresses configured. When configuring your interface, you will have the ability to specify VLAN IDs and specify IP address(es) for each interface created in this way. In addition to configuring the LoadMaster, the local switch will also need to be configured. A switch’s ports will often need to be set to “trunk mode” and you will be asked to specify which VLANs will have traffic passed through this interface.
Of course, these two useful LoadMaster features can be used in conjunction. If you plan to use VLANs on a bonded interface, ensure to bond the interfaces first to avoid any foreseeable issues.