To prepare hosts to participate in NSX-T, you must install NSX-T kernel modules on ESXi hosts. This allows you to build the NSX-T control-plane and management-plane fabric. NSX-T kernel modules packaged in VIB files run within the hypervisor kernel and provide services such as distributed routing, distributed firewall, and bridging capabilities.
You can download the NSX-T VIBs manually and make them part of the host image. The download paths can change for each release of NSX-T. Always check the NSX-T downloads page to get the appropriate VIBs.
- Log in to the host as root or as a user with administrative privileges
- Navigate to the /tmp directory.
[root@host:~]: cd /tmp
- Download and copy the nsx-lcp file into the /tmp directory.
- Run the install command.
[root@host:/tmp]: esxcli software vib install -d /tmp/nsx-lcp-<release>.zip Installation Result Message: Operation finished successfully. Reboot Required: false VIBs Installed: VMware_bootbank_nsx-aggservice_<release>, VMware_bootbank_nsx-da_<release>, VMware_bootbank_nsx-esx-datapath_<release>, VMware_bootbank_nsx-exporter_<release>, VMware_bootbank_nsx-host_<release>, VMware_bootbank_nsx-lldp_<release>, VMware_bootbank_nsx-mpa_<release>, VMware_bootbank_nsx-netcpa_<release>, VMware_bootbank_nsx-python-protobuf_<release>, VMware_bootbank_nsx-sfhc_<release>, VMware_bootbank_nsxa_<release>, VMware_bootbank_nsxcli_<release> VIBs Removed: VIBs Skipped:
Depending on what was already installed on the host, some VIBs might be installed, some might be removed, and some might be skipped. A reboot is not required unless the command output says Reboot Required: true.
As a result of adding an ESXi host to the NSX-T fabric, the following VIBs get installed on the host.
nsx-aggservice—Provides host-side libraries for NSX-T aggregation service. NSX-T aggregation service is a service that runs in the management-plane nodes and fetches runtime state from NSX-T components.
nsx-da—Collects discovery agent (DA) data about the hypervisor OS version, virtual machines, and network interfaces. Provides the data to the management plane, to be used in troubleshooting tools.
nsx-esx-datapath—Provides NSX-T data plane packet processing functionality.
nsx-exporter—Provides host agents that report runtime state to the aggregation service running in the management plane.
nsx-host— Provides metadata for the VIB bundle that is installed on the host.
nsx-lldp—Provides support for the Link Layer Discovery Protocol (LLDP), which is a link layer protocol used by network devices for advertising their identity, capabilities, and neighbors on a LAN.
nsx-mpa—Provides communication between NSX Manager and hypervisor hosts.
nsx-netcpa—Provides communication between the central control plane and hypervisors. Receives logical networking state from the central control plane and programs this state in the data plane.
nsx-python-protobuf—Provides Python bindings for protocol buffers.
nsx-sfhc—Service fabric host component (SFHC). Provides a host agent for managing the lifecycle of the hypervisor as a fabric host in the management plane's inventory. This provides a channel for operations such as NSX-T upgrade and uninstall and monitoring of NSX-T modules on hypervisors.
nsxa—Performs host-level configurations, such as hostswitch creation and uplink configuration.
nsxcli—Provides the NSX-T CLI on hypervisor hosts.
nsx-support-bundle-client - Provides the ability to collect support bundles.
To verify, you can run the esxcli software vib list | grep nsx or esxcli software vib list | grep <yyyy-mm-dd> command on the ESXi host, where the date is the day that you performed the installation.
What to do next
Add the host to the NSX-T management plane. See Join the Hypervisor Hosts with the Management Plane.