ESXi Setup

Setting up new servers with ESXi 4.x
They are HP DL380 G7's with 6 NIC ports.

How should I configure the networking on these servers?

I was going to setup 4 NICs to the iSCS and 2 to the LAN.  But now I am thinking I need a vMotion / Management network also.  What is the best way to configure these, do we need a separate Management network?  
jasonracAsked:
Who is Participating?
I wear a lot of hats...

"The solutions and answers provided on Experts Exchange have been extremely helpful to me over the last few years. I wear a lot of hats - Developer, Database Administrator, Help Desk, etc., so I know a lot of things but not a lot about one thing. Experts Exchange gives me answers from people who do know a lot about one thing, in a easy to use platform." -Todd S.

jimmyray7Commented:
I would devote 2 to LAN, 2 to storage, and either 1 or 2 to vMotion/Management.  You could put the management on the LAN and free up a NIC for Fault Tolerance or something else.
0
ThorinOCommented:
I would use 2 for the VM Network/service console, 2 for the vMotion network, and 2 for the iSCSI network.

the vMotion network won't use 2 NICs at once so you won't gain much here so you could use 1 for vmotion and 1 for the service console but then vCenter will complain about redundancy for the service console.

I would create a vSwitch for each group.
0
jasonracAuthor Commented:
Should each network be physically separate switches and different networks?
0
Ultimate Tool Kit for Technology Solution Provider

Broken down into practical pointers and step-by-step instructions, the IT Service Excellence Tool Kit delivers expert advice for technology solution providers. Get your free copy now.

ThorinOCommented:
That would be best or VLANed if possible
0
jasonracAuthor Commented:
Okay so let's say I have
iSCSI --> 192.168.1.0 / 24
Management --> 192.168.2.0 / 24
LAN --> 192.168.3.0 / 24

What network would the host be on?  192.168.2.0 ? And I would route traffic from my LAN to the Management?  I assume traffic between the Mgmt and LAN does not need to be at Gbps speed?  (There will be a router in the middle)

0
chkdsk01Commented:
It's ESXi, so no need to worry about service console.  Your management can be on the same as the LAN, unless you need to seperate it for security reasons.

You also will want to have at least one nic for vMotion.

Check out this article.  There are eight parts to it, but part seven (link below) goes over best ways to configure different numbers of physical nics.

http://kensvirtualreality.wordpress.com/2009/05/01/the-great-vswitch-debate-part-7/
0
jasonracAuthor Commented:
Thank you both - I read those articles last night actually and they are very helpful.

I am going to make 3 networks:
1.) iSCSI - completely separate with no router to the other networks
2.) VMWare Management / vMotion -
3.) LAN

I believe that my vCenter server should be on the VMWare Management subnet and that all my hosts should have their management IPs on the Management subnet - is that correct?

If so I will have to put a router between my Management and LAN subnets - I think that is okay b/c there should not be any significant traffic between these networks.  

Is this the correct setup?
0
chkdsk01Commented:
What I typically do, since there is not much management traffic, especially with ESXi, is to create four vSwitches.  One of my current environments looks like this.

1.) Management - 10.90.10.x /20 --> vlan 48
2.) Storage - 10.90.96.x /20 --> vlan 101
3.) vMotion - 10.90.65.x /20 --> vlan 66
4.) LAN - pNics are plugged into ports on vlan 48

Then my management and LAN are on the same network and vlan.  Storage is in it's own, as is vMotion.  I don't need a /20 for storage or vmotion but I kept it the same.

Since you have pNic limitations, I would suggest the following:

3 vSwitches with two pNics each

vSwitch 1 - Storage PortGroup
vSwitch 2 - vMotion Portgroup
vSwitch 3 - VM Network and Management Portgroup

This way you don't need to worry about tagging ports with multiple vlans and configuring vlans on the vmware side.  Each trunk of two ports is only in one vlan.  In addition to eliminating the need to route between MGMT and LAN.  I much prefer the KISS method and there is not much traffic on the management nics to begin with.

Also, one other thing some don't consider is when configuring a vSwitch two nics it is best to add pNics on different busses, e.g. not assigning two pNics from a dual-port nic.  Just to eliminate additional single points of failure.

Hope this helps.
0

Experts Exchange Solution brought to you by

Your issues matter to us.

Facing a tech roadblock? Get the help and guidance you need from experienced professionals who care. Ask your question anytime, anywhere, with no hassle.

Start your 7-day free trial
jasonracAuthor Commented:
Thank you
0
It's more than this solution.Get answers and train to solve all your tech problems - anytime, anywhere.Try it for free Edge Out The Competitionfor your dream job with proven skills and certifications.Get started today Stand Outas the employee with proven skills.Start learning today for free Move Your Career Forwardwith certification training in the latest technologies.Start your trial today
Switches / Hubs

From novice to tech pro — start learning today.

Question has a verified solution.

Are you are experiencing a similar issue? Get a personalized answer when you ask a related question.

Have a better answer? Share it in a comment.