nic teaming on esxi management interface

Posted on 2009-12-22
Medium Priority
Last Modified: 2012-05-08
Hi Guys,
i have installed vmware esxi 4.0 on Dell PE blade server. it has got one quadcore NIC. i want to enable active-active laod balancing/nic teaming on management intefrace.but the problem is when enable the nic teaming on management interface from VI client and try accessing it i'm loosing connectivity to the management interface.can some one suggest what i'm supposed to do?
Question by:APPIREDDY
LVL 42

Expert Comment

by:Paul Solovyovsky
ID: 26103979
If you're setting up a VM Network on the same vswitch as your management interface and you have 4 nics attached to it then vmware will do a very basic load balance.  It will assign the VMs to different physical nics and will run then on that interface untill there is a need to failover.

The only way to do active load balancing is to setup Cisco ehterchannel on a switch and setup trunk ports.  This will aggregate and load balance the 4 ports.

You can also create a separate vswitch for your virtual machines so that your management port is on a separate vswitch and is not competing for bandwidth (albeit it is not large amount)

On the new vswitch you can assign 2 or 3 physical nics and you're set.  Unless you have a lot of VMs and/or high throuphput VMs the basic load balancing works just fine, I have had several dozon VMs on a single vswitch with 2 physical nics with no issues in the past
LVL 24

Expert Comment

ID: 26104068
Like paul said, if you dont have many VMs the internal load balancing is good enough but take note, as this is only for outbound traffic for proper load balancing outbound& inbound traffic standard link aggregation protocol such as LACP is required

I suggest the following

vSwitch0(mgmt/vmk) = vmnic0 & vmnic1 (put both to active in the vSwitch failover policy)
vSwitch1(VM network) = vmnic2 & vmnic3 (put both to active in the vSwitch failover policy)

Accepted Solution

APPIREDDY earned 0 total points
ID: 26110820
Hi Guys,
Thanks for the suggestions.i have already taken care of layout of what NIC's should go on which switch and load balancing e.t.c. My question was as soon as i enable the Nic teaming on Management interface/Vm Network(combination), i was loosing the connection to the Host from VI client.

This issues has now been resolved. I think i will outline the cause and how i fixed it, so that other can benefit.
Problem: By default, when you enable the nic teaming on esxi 4.0 management/vmnetwork, you will loose the connection to host and you won't be able to manage the host using VI client.

Usual Setup: i have 1 quad core nic [4-ports, i.e 4-vmnic(vmnic0,vmnic1,vmnic2,vmnic3)]
Initial esxi 4.0 installation: both Management network and vmnetwork are on vmnic0 on vswitch0
Physical Switch used: cisco 2960 (layer-2 switch)
Physical switch configuration: ether channel with trunking enabled ( 2 ether channels one for management/vmnetwork and another trunk for iSCSI network)
Network ty: Network with multiple VLAN and Routing in place

--Reason why one may loose connection to esxi 4.0 host after enabling failover/nic teaming?
VLAN tagging is not enabled. i mean both management  and vmnet must be tagged with vlan id, which will enable the routing of the packets in a VLAN environment.
Fix: Just give Vlan ID for both Management and vmnetwork and then enable failover/nic teaming and use Route based of Ip-hash
make sure you do this for both management network and vmnetwork on the same switch invidually enabling the nic teaming by selecting the checkboxes under failover.

This fixed my issue.
Hope this will help you guys.
if you need any more explanation, please let me know


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