Packet Loss on a Single VM

I have an  ESXi host (5.5 U2) that is running 10 VMs.  The host is lightly loaded, averaging 10%CPU usage at most points throughout the day.

One and only one VM is experiencing packet loss up to 20% when it is pinged.  The OS for this VM is the IBM 4690 POS which is supported in VMware.

I have tried all the different adapters for this VM (Flexible, E1000, etc ...) with no effect.  VMware tools is not installed.

I also used ESXTOP and there is no TX or RX packet loss on the vSwitch.

Here's the kicker - I always experience packet loss when pinging this VM from my laptop, even when plugged into the same switch as the ESXi host (VM is one hop away).  However, if I ping this VM from one of the other VMs running on the same host, I receive no packet loss.

Does anyone have any ideas why there is packet loss when going through the pNIC and not when going straight VM to VM?

More importantly, does anyone have any ideas on how to get rid of the packet loss?

Thanks in advance for your assistance!
Who is Participating?

[Product update] Infrastructure Analysis Tool is now available with Business Accounts.Learn More

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.

Andrew Hancock (VMware vExpert / EE MVE^2)VMware and Virtualization ConsultantCommented:
I would recommend you always use the virtualised driver and interface VMXNET3, which requires VMware Tools to be installed to support the driver.
CipherUserAuthor Commented:

I don't see anyway to install VMware tools in the 4690 OS.  Is there another option?
Andrew Hancock (VMware vExpert / EE MVE^2)VMware and Virtualization ConsultantCommented:
Big Business Goals? Which KPIs Will Help You

The most successful MSPs rely on metrics – known as key performance indicators (KPIs) – for making informed decisions that help their businesses thrive, rather than just survive. This eBook provides an overview of the most important KPIs used by top MSPs.

Is it IBM DOS based system or Suse or OS/2 ?
Since traffic from your laptop will traverse the physical switch, and traffic from other VMs would only traverse the virtual switch, I would suggest that you look at the physical switch to see if there's some issue with load balancing, port channel hashing, etc.
CipherUserAuthor Commented:
gheist - It is a textual (DOS-like) OS that I understand is built on Linux under the engine.  It looks very DOS like though.
So follow the instructions to install vmware tools on SuSE linux...
CipherUserAuthor Commented:
It's been confirmed that broadcast traffic is causing this packet loss and vmware tools cannot be installed.  

Experts - is there a way to isolate this VM from all the broadcast traffic from the rest of my network, perhaps using VLANs?  I have created a separate vswitch with an uplink to a secondary NIC on the ESXi server.  I placed the VM experiencing packet loss on this new switch.  Is there a vmware way to isolate this secondary vswitch from the LAN broadcast traffic?  

I know VLANs isolate broadcast traffic, but admittedly don't know much about them.  Is there a way to use them here to isolate my one VM from all the broadcast traffic on my network?

Thanks for your continued assistance.
Andrew Hancock (VMware vExpert / EE MVE^2)VMware and Virtualization ConsultantCommented:
You can create vLANs on your physical network, and ESXi virtual switches can use those vLANS, and you can place that VM in that VLAN.

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
If you have enough broadcast traffic to cause congestion on your network, it sounds like the problem likely extends beyond this on VM.

A VLAN has several benefits.  By increasing the number of VLANs, you will increase the number of broadcast domains, but decrease their size.  Best practice is to assign one IP subnet per VLAN.

Steps to achieve your goal:
Create a new VLAN on your switches.
Create a new IP subnet, make sure that your router(s) can route to the new subnet, correctly place a router interface into the VLAN.
Create the port group on your ESXi hosts.
Place the VM in the new port group.
Assign the appropriate IP address to the VM. (with default gateway, etc.)
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

From novice to tech pro — start learning today.