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VMWare Distributed Port Group Configuration

Posted on 2014-10-24
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Last Modified: 2014-10-29
I have a 3 esxi hosts all with matching hardware and recently set up vcenter server.

I converted all of my existing standard switches to distributed switches and all is working correctly.

The problem I am having is when I try to add a new port group to one of these distributed switches that I created. I cannot seem to get any new port groups to work correctly, there are 3 existing port groups on this virtual switch that were migrated that work fine.

I need to be able to add more port groups to access new vlans.

I try to mimic all of the properties/policies settings in the existing port groups except the vlan # of course

If I put VMs into this port group, they cannot ping the gateway. 2 VMs can ping eachother as long as they are running on the same host. They cannot if they are on different hosts.

The ports on the physical switch that the uplinks connect to are configured to trunk all vlans so I do not think there is an issue there. Same with the uplinks themselves in vcenter.

Since the port groups that I migrated to the distributed switch are ok, there must be some part of the configuration that I am missing when I create a new port group.


One thing I see that looks a little off is that there are unused ports in this port group where the other port groups have only the exact number they need. All groups are set as Ephemeral.
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Question by:bts86
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Expert Comment

by:asavener
ID: 40402840
How many uplink ports do you have configured for each vDS?

You say that all VLANs are configured to trunk to your hosts, but are all VLANs allowed past the switches themselves?  (on all upstream trunk ports and between the switches themselves?)
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Expert Comment

by:asavener
ID: 40402846
Also, what kind of uplink ports are you using?  Are you running a port channel?  LACP-controlled port channel?  Just individual uplinks?

What kind of load balancing do you have configured on the new VLANs?
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by:bts86
ID: 40402912
I have 2 uplink ports on each host for this distributed switch where I am having the issue.

They connect to a cisco catalyst 3560 as a port-channel:

interface Port-channel7
 description esxi01
 switchport trunk encapsulation dot1q
 switchport trunk allowed vlan 1-19,21-29,31-4094
 switchport mode trunk
 switchport nonegotiate

I see now that I do not have LACP configured on the VMware hosts.

I am not familiar with some of the options I see to create a LAG. If my switch is set to nonnegotiate does that mean I want the LAG mode as "active"?


Im also a little wary of changing this configuration, can I apply it on a per host basis so that I can migrate VMs off each one first? My management access is also on this vDS and I am afraid to lose connectivity.
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Author Comment

by:bts86
ID: 40402925
on this particulat vDS, there are 2 uplink ports per host, gigabit Ethernet connected to a cisco catalyst 3560:

interface Port-channel7
 description esxi01
 switchport trunk encapsulation dot1q
 switchport trunk allowed vlan 1-19,21-29,31-4094
 switchport mode trunk
 switchport nonegotiate

I see now that I do not have lacp configured on the vDS. Can I configure this without losing connectivity on the current port groups on this vDS?
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Accepted Solution

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asavener earned 500 total points
ID: 40402950
Check the load balancing settings configured on each port group (a working port group and a non-working port group).

Are you configuring through the web client or the c# client?

Be careful making any LACP changes, as I think it's global for all port groups connected to the distributed virtual switch.
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Author Comment

by:bts86
ID: 40402964
load balancing is the same on all port groups: route based on originating virtual port

I am using the web client.
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Author Comment

by:bts86
ID: 40411518
I have figured this out.

The new vlan was created on an asa firewall which does not participate in vtp. So I created the vlan also on the switch with the command : int vlan 51

In troubleshooting I gave the vlan an ip and tried to ping the gateway. There was an error: ip not enabled or interface is down.

What I did not realize is that that command does not actually add the vlan to the database event though it shows it as an interface in the config. The command should have been just: vlan 51

I've never realized this because I usually have at least one switchport configured in access mode for a vlan or it receive vlan information from another switch that does by vtp.


Added the vlan to the switch properly and now can ping everything that it should

What a lot of trouble for such a simple solution.

Thanks for your help. I have actually removed the port channels from the switch because what you pointed out showed me that they were not really functioning as a port channel. Instead of configuring lacp and risking losing connectivity. I am keeping the physicals port as individual uplinks and configured teaming on all port groups to route based on physical nic load.

All is working well this way. I can see in the performance monitors that the traffic is being spread on both nics.
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