Network Load Balancing

Network Load Balancing (NLB) enables you to create a group of machines (called an NLB cluster) that are then responsible for processing the requests sent to a single IP address (that is, the one configured for a Web site). Servers choose, more or less by committee, which one of them will process the request, according to availability and loading on each of the servers in the NLB cluster.

NLB was available in Windows 2000, but only for the Advanced Server and Datacenter Server versions. NLB is now supported by all versions of the operating system, so we can use an NLB cluster to help improve performance across two or more servers even when running the Web Edition.