Is there any difference when using Hardware or Software load balancing with SharePoint?

What we want to do is to test a clustered solution using Windows NLB in test, and then run it using Hardware load balancing in production.


Alot of people has quite religious views regarding HW load balancing, and that sw NLB isnt "real" NLB, but on all the projects where we have done this we have used MS (software) NLB in production without issues.

When that is said, its always an issue if your setup differs from environment to environment, so a best practice would be to use same sw/hw at least from pre-prod and up.

We often virtualize from integration test and down, but keep pre-prod and prod identical.

hth Anders Rask

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As long as the hardware and software platform behave identical (load distribution algorithm, sticky sessions etc) then there should be no difference.

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  • i think sticky sessions is required for running sharepoint though – Anders Rask Jan 19 '10 at 14:29

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