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VM with Multiple NIC's

Posted on 2013-05-17
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Last Modified: 2013-05-21
I have created a Server 2012 VM on ESXi5.1 and have added multiple network cards.

Am I right in assuming that each NIC in the VM will "attach" to a different physical NIC in the virtual switch (I have 3 NIC's in the virtual switch)?

If so, can I use the in-built network teaming in 2012 to improve network bandwidth to and from the server?
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Question by:esitrepxe
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by:peea
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by:Andrew Hancock (VMware vExpert / EE MVE^2)
Andrew Hancock (VMware vExpert / EE MVE^2) earned 125 total points
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Correct, depending upon which Teaming Policy you use for the vSwitch. Traffic will be sent through a physical NIC on the host.

You can confirm and check this using esxtop in network mode (type N)

Use the VMXNET3 network interface, that will provide you with a 10GBps network interface.

I would not recommend using Teaming in the VM.
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by:Carlo-Giuliani
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If you are using teaming on the VMWare host, then you should use only a single virtual NIC on the guest.

Use multiple virtual NICs on the guest only if you need to attach the same VM to multiple different networks.
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rafael_acc earned 125 total points
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Ok ... this depends on how good your understanding is. I hope you don't mean uplinks on the virtual switch.

With VMware, you can have a static/isolated vSwitch (on each ESXi host), or you can have a Distributed switch (you will also need vCenter for that) which is shared between all your ESXi hosts.

In both cases, you have uplinks (these would be "attached" to a physical NIC on the ESXi host) and port-groups (these would be your client-facing / access layer ports). In fact, you can even see that when you "attach" a VM, you don't attach it to a port, rather to a port-group; this in turn will have a specific access-policy (vlan, trunking, security).

You could indeed use NIC-teaming but be careful which protocol you select; if you go for LACP, make sure your access-policy for your port-groups is set to IP-Hash - once you do that, you could then actually set the switchports on a etherchannel.

Hope this helps.
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by:esitrepxe
ID: 39184389
Thanks for the answers Guys.

I think I'm going to stick with single NIC in the VM and see how performance goes.
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