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Level 11

Can Netflow traffic be load balanced with an F5?

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I have 4 Netflow receivers set up wan to spread netflow traffic acrossed them as the current receiver is being overloaded by the amount of traffic it's receiving. I am considering having our network team divide the traffic up by data center or other criteria, but it would be more manageable and scalable to let the F5 manage that as we grow. It's a lot easier to reconfigure an F5 to add/remove destinations than to log into individual routers and change the forwarding ip address.

Has anyone done this successfully?

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Level 12

Re: Can Netflow traffic be load balanced with an F5?

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Yes it does work...we have all of our Netflow going to a single VIP pointing to 8 pollers  ...it also does a check on the port to make sue the receiver is still alive on port 2055

Let me know if you have any questions

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Level 12

Re: Can Netflow traffic be load balanced with an F5?

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Yes it does work...we have all of our Netflow going to a single VIP pointing to 8 pollers  ...it also does a check on the port to make sue the receiver is still alive on port 2055

Let me know if you have any questions

View solution in original post

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Level 11

Re: Can Netflow traffic be load balanced with an F5?

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Thanks! It's good to get confirmation that this works. I'm going to fill out the design docs and put in a request for a load balancer ASAP. I was thinking about this when moved out Solarinds installation to new servers/ip's a few months ago. It definitely makes server changes easier as well.

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Level 9

Re: Can Netflow traffic be load balanced with an F5?

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Does your load balancer need any special config? I'm not an expert on such things, but my understanding is that our F5's act as a proxy, terminating the session at the VIP and initiating a new session from the F5 to the end server. Does NTA work properly with the source addresses changed by the F5?

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Level 12

Re: Can Netflow traffic be load balanced with an F5?

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Yes...do not use SNAT...that way the source will not be changed

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Level 9

Re: Can Netflow traffic be load balanced with an F5?

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jxchappell, What F5 monitor did you use to verify backend was online?

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Level 11

Re: Can Netflow traffic be load balanced with an F5?

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I should have asked this earlier, are your collectors on the same subnet as the Solarwinds and Netflow database servers? Or are they spread out. The network team asked me to have regional F5's and Netflow collectors if possible to reduce traffic across the WAN.

ie for West coast have a Netflow collector with F5

ie for Midwest  have a Netflow collector with F5

ie for East coast have a Netflow collector with F5

the collectors all write to the central NTA Flow database server.

If that won't work , I'll have the collectors and F5 on the same subnet as the NTA/Solarwinds Orion db server.

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Level 12

Re: Can Netflow traffic be load balanced with an F5?

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Architecturally that should work...we have APEs in 4 different global regions, but we do not have those APEs part of the F5 pool, only the APEs in Chicago

The traffic has to traverse the WAN regardless to get to the NTA database, so Im thinking there may not be any bandwidth savings

I think we'll be revisiting our architecture soon for some expansion, and having individual pools within region writing to central DB would be interesting to see if there was any difference

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Level 12

Re: Can Netflow traffic be load balanced with an F5?

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I've done this on a NetScaler, but not an F5.  That shouldn't matter, though, as it is a basic virtual server configuration for UDP traffic.  It is quite similar to load balancing DNS.

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Level 7

Re: Can Netflow traffic be load balanced with an F5?

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I have client who is trying to use NetScaler as a vip to forward Netflow, they are not able to get the Source IP, where you successful in getting the Source IP instead of the Netscaler ip as an exporter. Assuming you were successful in getting the source IP Can you please provide the details on how you configured the vip.

Thanks

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