Category Archives: Virtualization

Network Virtualization with VMware and NSX-v (Oh Boy!!)

As network engineers, we all know that whenever “the network is slow”, we get the blame. Always. And then you have to drop what you are doing and prove that it isn’t the network. And in doing this, you will usually figure out where the blame really lies…typically a misbehaving server or poorly performing application.

What does this have to do with VMware and NSX? Well…let me explain. Over the years we have developed tools, applications, and procedures to figure out what is causing a network slowdown…things such as NetFlow, Wireshark, SPAN, network TAPS, MRTG, SYSLOG, SWATCH, etc. And for the most part, we have our act together. When I hear of a network slowdown, I usually have an answer within 15-30 minutes, or even quicker. We know our stuff, don’t we?

Well, over the last 4 years my company has largely virtualized all of our Intel based servers (Windows based mostly, with a few Linux servers for added flavor). We had two long rows of cabinets full of physical servers, and now we have most all of them on 6 very powerful VMware hosts. (It’s truly incredible to see.) And I have had to adjust…port-channels and nic-teaming, lack of visibility within the virtual switch, just to name a few. But now…

Things are changing BIG TIME. Next to get virtualized is the network itself. Want proof?…then read the following white paper from VMware about their NSX-v application..

VMware NSX for vSphere Network Virtualization Design Guide

Warning…this guide is big, over 90 pages. But your head will be spinning long before you get to the end.

And your mind will be blown!! Mine is. Incredible stuff is heading our way people, and we need to be ready. Or get left behind.