Software Defined Networking is playing a key role of the software defined datacenter technologies. Hope that you may already heard of VMware NSX and it’s features and use cases in a Software Defined Datacenter. VMware acquired the company called Nicira which helped to originate the Software Defined Networking in mid 2000s. After acquiring this company in 2012 VMware released the network Virtualization platform called NSX as a combination of VMware in house R&D projects and Nicira technologies.
That is the bit of history about this greatest technology and if you are interested there are lots of articles in the internet. I’m not writing this to bring you the history of the technology and I’m planing to discuss few articles of the NSX Configuration. So let’s start from the beginning.
NSX – Manager Deployment
vCenter 6.5 is setup and in place and I’m deploying NSX 6.3.3 in my environment. As the best practice I always remind you to check the VMware Product Interoperability Matrices before you start any deployment. So I downloaded the NSX Manager and going to deploy it in my vSphere environment. It is just an OVA deployment and there are couple of things that we need to pay attention. Make sure to you have a proper NTP server in place for the time synchronization and consistency.
Deploy NSX manager as a OVA deployment, hope you already familiar with the OVF deployments and I’m just only adding the steps which are different from the normal procedure
NSX Manager is with 4 vCPUs and 16 GB of Memory this is bit of oversize for a test environment we can reduce the resources later. Also there is a 16 GB of Memory reservation and we can remove this reservation before we power on the Virtual Machine.
There’ll be a step to review the deployment details
Provide the IPv4 (IPv6 if possible) address Default gateway, domain search list, CLI admin password, CLI privilege mode passwords, hostname, etc
Verify the settings and Finish the deployment
vCenter will start the OVA deployment and check the status in recent tasks window
Note: once it deployed the appliance you can see that vmware tools are unsupported and in an old version. Make sure to leave it as it is and do not upgrade the tools. Specific functionalities are bonded to the these tools. If we are doing so please follow the recommended VMware documentation and procedures
Power on the Appliance and connect to the NSX Manager FQDN using your browser
Note: It has the 16 GB of Memory reservation configured and you can set it to 0 if you need to power on this in your test environment
Open the NSX Manager in the browser (you can use only web client to do the configuration C# client is not supported for NSX)
Use the provided admin credentials to login to the NSX Manager. Once you logged in to the NSX Manager you can see the home page which you can View the summary, Download the Tech Support logs, Manage Appliance Settings, Upgrade the Appliance and vCenter registration Options.
You can see the summary resource Consumption and NSX components in the summary page
You need to configure the vCenter server and vCenter lookup service as below
Connect to the vCenter server providing the vCenter credentials and accepting the certificate
Provide the SSO administrator credentials to connect to the lookup service, SSO and NSX Manager should be syncing to the same NTP Server
Once you connect the NSX Manager to the vCenter check the vCenter home page for the Networking and Security icon which is for the NSX Manager
Let’s see the Control plane and Data plane configurations later.