Tip of the Day: Why You Should Recommend SET over LBFO

Today’s Tip… Why You Should Recommend SET over LBFO

Ever need a quick reference when asked about the positives and negatives of various teaming technologies? Here is a set of factoids and recommendations that should help you out!

Background Reading

..and now to the good stuff…

Why We Recommend Switch Embedded Teaming (SET) over LBFO on Windows Server 2016 and 2019

  • SET has exceeded the stability and performance capabilities of LBFO
  • LBFO does not support a number of core Microsoft scenarios including:
    • LBFO cannot team RDMA adapters and as such is not suitable for Storage Spaces Direct deployments
    • LBFO does not support VMMQ or other stateless offloads that:
      • Enable VMs to exceed ~5 Gbps throughput per virtual machine
      • Improve system efficiency
      • Improve VM density
    • LBFO does not support SDNv2, the basis of Azure Networking on-premises in Windows Server 2016 or Windows Server 2019

‘However, SET does not support LACP and teaming mechanisms at the switch layer.’ 

The Microsoft perspective on this is:

  • LACP is not agile and requires switch modification, which is not easily automated, deployed, troubleshot, or maintained
  • Limits you to the minimum number of queues between the teamed adapters, limiting your overall VM density on the system
  • Aggregate bandwidth is irrelevant unless you need a single VM to consume more than a single adapters capability


Here’s hoping this helps with your next customer conversation.