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Our current server layout has 4 servers running on an external IP address all multi-homed using the 192.168.1.x network for external public access and the 192.168.5.x network for internal communication between all servers.

The 192.168.1.x and 192.168. 5.x networks are individual NICs on each server and run through distinct routers.

We have a bank of IP addresses, being our current main site, the secondary (internal) router we would like to set up for testing and load balancing (mainly to get our system traffic off the same pipe as client traffic).

The traffic works fine through the 192.168.1.x network and the servers all respond to traffic and requests without issue. However, attempting to access the 192.168.5.x network through a new IP address ( is not working at all. If you are internal to the network, you can access the website on the server at (5.100), but it will not accept traffic through the external router.

However, if we switch the 192.168.5.x router to be on the IP address, we can access our servers.

Is there a way to allow Windows Server 2012 to watch for internet traffic on both the 192.168.1.x and the 192.168.5.x subnets and properly respond to outside requests from them?

Our servers are Windows Server 2012 R2. Router on one side (192.168.1.x subnet / external - default gateway) is a Cisco RV082 (small business router). On the other side (192.168.5.x subnet / external / routing rules set up to pass traffic through router for gateway to 192.168.5.x network - the side that doesn`t work externally) we have a Cisco 2911 router.

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I would suspect people would be more inclined to answer if you fleshed this out to include some (fictitious, ideally out of RFC 1918 space) IP addresses rather than this "1.x" and "x.122" type of nomenclature. It may not seem like a big deal to you, but it makes parsing the question difficult and, for me at least, makes me disinclined to think about it (since I have to mentally translate between "1.x" and a real IPv4 subnet). –  Evan Anderson Jul 10 '14 at 11:48
For clarification's sake: Requests coming through the "5.x" router are always coming from clients in the "" address-space, and requests coming from through the "1.x" router are always coming from clients in the "" address-space? (Does each router connect to a network of clients with a distinct address space, or do the address-spaces of the networks the routers are connected to overlap?) –  Evan Anderson Jul 10 '14 at 11:50
I'm having a hard time following your question (for the reasons Even stated) but I'll take a stab at it: You've got traffic coming in to the servers from the internet on both networks but the server only properly responds (or seems to respond) to the traffic on one of the networks. Is that about right? If so, this is because routing occurs at Layer 3 and the server is going to respond to all non-local traffic through it's default gateway, of which there can only be one in a Windows OS (AFAIK). So traffic comes in to the 5.x network and the server sends the response out the 1.x network. –  joeqwerty Jul 10 '14 at 12:01
@evan thank you for the suggestion. I tried to update this but can't seem to on my phone (on the train) and will try to do so when I get somewhere more stable. –  Trevor Watson Jul 10 '14 at 12:18
@joequerty. You've go the right idea for what is happening. It seems to me that a response should go out where it came in from to me, but that isn't the case so we can't have 2 different routes out? If that is the case, I might have to have a web accessible server on the default gateway and one on the gateway which seems cumbersome –  Trevor Watson Jul 10 '14 at 12:22

1 Answer 1

up vote 3 down vote accepted

Your responses to comments are enough to clarify for me.

Windows Server 2012 doesn't have the functionality to do what you're looking for. You're looking for some basic policy-based routing functionality, which Windows has never had decent support for.

I don't know about the Cisco RV082 (which, if memory serves, is a re-badged Linksys offering), but the 2911 could NAT the traffic from the Internet to an address local to its interface. Assuming you could get the same thing going on the RV082 side you'd find that the Windows machines would respond to requests out the "correct" NIC.

This is likely not a real world solution. This would be problematic because the Windows machines wouldn't have knowledge of the real source IP address of clients. Surely, at the least, this would be an analytics problem, if not exposing other problems in your apps where it might be assumed that you'll have knowledge of the client's IP address.

A better solution would be to put a policy-based routing solution in place ahead of the Windows Server machines. (I'd probably throw a Linux machine (or machines) upstream from the Windows Server machines running one of the various popular HTTP reverse-proxy applications, but that's personal preference.)

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Or just a simple cheapo router to bridge the connections. –  Get-HomeByFiveOClock Jul 10 '14 at 14:49
@Yehaw - Bridging the connections doesn't help the problem that the Windows Server machine is going to respond to the "wrong" NAT device upon receiving a new connection attempt coming in through the least-preferred device. –  Evan Anderson Jul 10 '14 at 14:51
ok, re-read the question. Thanks for the clarification of what the actual problem was. –  Get-HomeByFiveOClock Jul 10 '14 at 15:00

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