About networking in a hypervisor cluster profile

The network configuration on the hypervisor cluster profile defines consistent network configuration for all the hypervisors in the cluster. It comprises vSwitches, port groups, and the networks that are to be configured for each hypervisor in the cluster.

The network configuration on the hypervisor cluster profile is built based on the connections configured in the server profile template. In the server profile template, you must have connections configured with function type as Ethernet or Fiber Channel. The hypervisor cluster profile currently supports only the software initiator iSCSI connections configured in the server profile template.

vSwitches and port groups

The Virtual Switch (vSwitch) is a software-based virtual network switch used to provide network services for a hypervisor. VMkernel services or VMs are enabled to connect to the configured networks based on the port groups defined in the vSwitch. The uplinks of the vSwitch are the physical NICs on the server, and can have either a single NIC or multiple NICs teamed for high availability.

The vSwitch configuration is automatically built based on the connections in the associated server profile template, and the hypervisor settings of the hypervisor cluster profile. This process ensures consistent network configuration on the hypervisor, and the underlying server hardware. Software configurations and policies of the vSwitch or port group can be set using the hypervisor manager interface.

If there is a connection to the Ethernet network in the server profile template, a vSwitch and a port group are defined in the vSwitch configuration. If there is a connection to a network set in the server profile template, a vSwitch and multiple port groups (one port group for each network in the network set) are defined in the vSwitch configuration.

NOTE:

If LAG is configured on the connections in the server profile template, for link aggregation to work you must configure LACP on the vSwitch. To configure LACP on the vSwitch, use the hypervisor manager interface.

vSwitch types

A vSwitch that is configured on a hypervisor can be of type Standard or Distributed. The default type is set to Standard. You can create a vSwitch of type Distributed on the hypervisor manager, and choose to propagate its settings to all the hypervisors associated with it.

The vSwitch is configured as type Standard or Distributed based on the hypervisor settings of the hypervisor cluster profile. If there is an existing Distributed vSwitch on the hypervisor manager with the same name, location, and networks as the vSwitch that is to be configured, then the existing vSwitch is used for the hypervisor cluster profile.

NOTE:

Once a hypervisor cluster profile is created with a certain distributed vSwitch version, the version cannot be changed.

You can migrate the vSwitch from Standard to Distributed type. If the vSwitch is for a general network, you can migrate the vSwitch from Distributed to Standard type. If a hypervisor cluster profile is configured to have all the networks (general and special purpose) to be on a Distributed vSwitch, you cannot migrate this vSwitch to Standard type using edit option for hypervisor cluster profile.

Networks

The networks can be tagged, untagged, or tunnel Ethernet networks. Port groups are not configured for the tunnel Ethernet networks. The following are the categories of networks based on their purpose.

  • Management network

    Management network is a network with its purpose set to Management, and is mandatory for a hypervisor cluster profile. The server profile template that is linked with the hypervisor cluster profile must have a connection to a management network, or to a network set containing the management network. The hypervisor manager uses this network for managing hypervisors. The subnet ranges on the management network are used to automatically assign an IP address to the hypervisor. You can also choose to specify the IP address and its configuration manually. Only the VMkernel ports with management purpose are configured on vSwitch for this network by the hypervisor cluster profile.

    NOTE:

    In a hypervisor cluster profile only one network is supported for management purpose.

  • Special-purpose networks

    The special purpose networks are the networks that have a purpose set to VM Migration, iSCSI, or Fault Tolerance. The subnet ranges on the network are used to automatically assign an IP address on the hypervisor. You can also choose to assign an IP address using DHCP.
    NOTE:

    DHCP is configured by default for the hypervisor cluster profiles that are managed by a hypervisor manager which is registered with IPv6 address or a fully qualified domain name (FQDN). The registered FDQN resolves to an IPv6 address.

    Only the VMkernel ports with the purpose as defined in the network are configured on the vSwitch for this network. The list of networks is populated based on the chosen server profile template and connections in the server profile template.
  • General network

    The General networks are used by your business applications, and services that are running on the infrastructure managed by HPE OneView. Only the VM port groups are configured on the vSwitch for this network.

NOTE:
  • VMkernel ports on the hypervisor must be enabled for single-purpose only.

  • The server profile template used by the hypervisor cluster profile can contain connections to a single network or to a network set. If the network set contains both general and special purpose networks, then even if you opt to create a distributed vSwitch for general networks, a standard vSwitch is created.

NIC teaming

NIC teaming is the process of combining multiple network cards together for performance, load balancing, and redundancy. The NIC teaming configuration of a vSwitch is derived from the connections that are configured in the server profile template, and the network definition.

The following are the scenarios where NIC teaming is identified, and a single vSwitch is configured for a network or network set. The NICs that are associated with these connections are teamed as active.

  • A server profile template has two or more connections for the same network.

  • A server profile template has two or more connections for networks with the same identity.

  • A server profile template has two or more connections for the same network set.

  • A server profile template has two or more connections for the network sets, which have networks with the same identity and order.

Two network resources are considered to have the same identity in the following configurations.

  • If both the networks are tagged networks, and their VLAN ID and purpose match.

  • If both the networks are untagged networks, and their label prefixed with the Alias is the same.

  • If both the networks are tunnel Ethernet networks, and their label prefixed with the Alias is the same.

For iSCSI networks, multipathing is configured instead of NIC teaming. Multipathing configuration is a standard best practice for iSCSI, and handles high-availability using multiple storage paths for the SAN volume.

For VM Migration networks, if the Multi-NIC vMotion setting is enabled in the hypervisor settings of the hypervisor cluster profile, then NICs are configured for VMware Multi-NIC vMotion.

NOTE:

The connectivity to a network in the server profile template must be through multiple connections to this network or using multiple connections to a network set containing this network, and not a mix of both.

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