The NSX managed virtual distributed switch (N-VDS, previously known as hostswitch) or OVS is invisible to the tenant network administrator and provides the underlying forwarding. The primary component involved in the data plane of the transport nodes is the N-VDS. The N-VDS forwards traffic between components running on the transport node (e.g., between virtual
machines) or between internal components and the physical network. While configuring the hypervisor hosts or the NSX-T edges as Transport node, the admin must specify the Transport Zone, Uplink Profile and Physical Network adapters(pNICs). The N-VDS must own one or more physical interfaces (pNICs) on the transport node. The physical network adapters owned by the N-VDS cannot be shared with any another N-VDS. The N-VDS can coest with vSwitch, dvSwitch, another N-VDS when using a separate set of pNICs.
N-VDS implementation on ESXi and KVM:
On ESXi hypervisors, the N-VDS implementation is derived from VMware vSphere® Distributed Switch™ (VDS) through the nsx-vSwitch module. The nsx-vswitch module is loaded in to the kernel when the hypervisor host is configured as a Fabric Node. The N-VDS is a mandatory component for running the Overly network can coexists with the vSwitch, DVSwitch as long as they are configured with a different set of pNICs. The nsxa agent/process running on the ESXi host will configure the hostswitch with the help of the nsx-vswitch kernel module.
Run the following command to list the NSX Kernel modules on the ESXi host.
[root@esx-04a:~] esxcfg-module -l | grep nsx
To list the packages installed on the ESXi host, run the following command:
[root@esx-04a:~] esxcli software vib list | grep nsx
On KVM hypervisor, the Open-vSwitch (OVS) module implements the Hostswitch. You may run the following command to check the list of the opevSwitch packages installed on the Ubuntu KVM host.
root@kvm-01a:~# dpkg -l | grep openvswitch-*
List of packages installed on KVM, pushed from the NSX Manager are :
In this blog post, we have discussed the following:
- What is N-VDS or hostswitch?
- How is the ESXi implements the N-VDs?
- How is the KVM implements the N-VDs?
- Packages installed on ESXi/KVM hosts?
For more information about the N-VDS, please do read the NSX-T Documentation:
I hope this is informative for you and thank you for reading.
- NSX-T 2.1 Complete video series:
- Introduction to NSX-T
- NSX-T Architecture
- Deploying NSX-T Manager Virtual Machine on ESXi host
- Configuring NSX-T Control cluster
- Deploying NSX-T Edge node on ESXi
- Prepare ESXi host as fabric node in NSX-T
- Prepare KVM hosts as fabric Node in NSX-T
- How to add vCenter Server as Compute Manager?