The design of a distributed port group specifies port configuration options for each member port on a vSphere Distributed Switch. Distributed port groups define how a connection is made to a network.

Port Group Configuration

The port group configuration of the distributed switch for a VI workload domain follows the network configuration for the domain in VMware Cloud Foundation.

Figure 1. vSphere Distributed Switch Design for a VI Workload Domain
The two NICs of an ESXi host are connected to the distributed switch for the VI workload domain. The switch propagates VLAN-backed port groups for management, vSphere vMotion, vSAN, NFS , NSX host overlay, and uplink traffic.
Table 1. Port Group Binding and Teaming

Port Group Function

Port Binding

Teaming Policy

Active Uplinks

Failover Detection

Notify Switches

Failback

Management

Static Port Binding

Route based on physical NIC load

1, 2

Link status only

Yes

Yes

vMotion

Static Port Binding

Route based on physical NIC load

1, 2

Link status only

Yes

Yes

vSAN

Static Port Binding

Route based on physical NIC load

1, 2

Link status only

Yes

Yes

NFS (Optional/ Manually created)

Static Port Binding

Route based on physical NIC load

1, 2

Link status only

Yes

Yes

Host Overlay

See Overlay Design for a Virtual Infrastructure Workload Domain.

Edge Uplink01

Edge Uplink02

NIC Teaming

For a predictable level of performance and for high availability, use multiple network adapters in one of the following configurations.

  • An active-passive configuration that uses explicit failover when connected to two separate switches.

  • An active-active configuration in which two or more physical NICs in the server are assigned the active role.

Table 2. Design Decisions on Distributed Port Groups

Decision ID

Design Decision

Design Justification

Design Implication

VCF-WLD-VCS-VDS-003

Use static port binding for all port groups in a VI workload domain cluster.

  • Static binding ensures a virtual machine connects to the same port on the vSphere Distributed Switch. This configuration supports historical data and port level monitoring.
  • Because the vCenter Server instance managing the VI workload domain resides in the management domain, using an ephemeral port group for vCenter Server recoverability is not required.

None

VCF-WLD-VCS-VDS-004

Use the Route based on physical NIC load teaming algorithm for the management port group.

Reduces the complexity of the network design and increases resiliency and performance.

None

VCF-WLD-VCS-VDS-005

Use the Route based on physical NIC load teaming algorithm for the vSphere vMotion port group.

Reduces the complexity of the network design and increases resiliency and performance.

None

VMkernel Network Adapter Configuration

The VMkernel networking layer provides connectivity to hosts and handles the system traffic for management, vSphere vMotion, vSphere HA, vSAN, and others.

Table 3. Default VMkernel Adapters for a VI Workload Domain with a Single Availability Zone

VMkernel Adapter Service

Connected Port Group

Enabled Services

MTU Size (Bytes)

Management

Management Port Group

Management Traffic

1500 (Default)

vMotion

vMotion Port Group

vMotion Traffic

9000

vSAN

vSAN Port Group

vSAN

9000

Table 4. Default VMkernel Adapters for a VI Workload Domain with Multiple Availability Zones

Availability Zones

VMkernel Adapter Service

Connected Port Group

Enabled Services

MTU Size (Bytes)

First availability zone

Management

Management port group for the first availability zone

Management Traffic

1500 (Default)

vMotion

vSphere vMotion port group for the first availability zone

vMotion Traffic

9000

vSAN

vSAN port group for the first availability zone

vSAN

9000

Second availability zone

Management

Management port group for the second availbaility zone

Management Traffic

1500 (Default)

vMotion

vSphere vMotion port group for the second availability zone

vMotion Traffic

9000

vSAN

vSAN port group for the second availability zone

vSAN

9000