The integration architecture explains the information exchanged between a container cluster that uses Antrea CNI network plug-in and the NSX Manager Appliance, which is deployed in an NSX-T Data Center.

This documentation does not explain the functions of Antrea components in a Kubernetes (K8s) cluster. To understand the Antrea architecture and the functions of Antrea components in a Kubernetes cluster, see the Antrea documentation portal at

This main objective of this documentation is to understand the functions of the Antrea NSX Adapter that integrates a container cluster with Antrea CNI to the NSX Manager Appliance.

Architecture Diagram

Information exchanged between Antrea components in a Kubernetes cluster and NSX Unified Appliance.

Antrea NSX Adapter

This component runs as a Pod on one of the Kubernetes Control Plane nodes. Antrea NSX Adapter consists of the following two subcomponents:
  • Management Plane Adapter (MP Adapter)
  • Central Control Plane Adapter (CCP Adapter)

Management Plane Adapter communicates with the NSX Management Plane (Policy), Kubernetes API Server, and Antrea Controller. Central Control Plane Adapter communicates with the NSX Central Control Plane (CCP) and Kubernetes API Server.

Functions of the Management Plane Adapter

  • Watches the Kubernetes resource inventory from Kubernetes API and reports the inventory to NSX Manager. Resource inventory of an Antrea container cluster includes resources, such as Pods, Ingress, Services, Network Policies, Namespaces, and Nodes.
  • Responds to the policy statistics query from NSX Manager. It receives the statistics from the Antrea Controller API or the statistics that are exported by the Antrea Agent on each K8s worker node, and reports the statistics to NSX Manager.
  • Receives troubleshooting operation requests from NSX Manager, sends the requests to Antrea Controller API server, collects the results, and returns the information to NSX Manager. Examples of troubleshooting operations include Traceflow requests, Support Bundle collection requests, log collection requests.
  • Watches the runtime state and health status of an Antrea container cluster from the Antrea Monitoring CustomResourceDefinition (CRD) objects and reports the status to NSX Manager. The status is reported on a per container cluster basis. For example, the health status of the following components is reported to NSX Manager:
    • Management Plane Adapter
    • Central Control Plane Adapter
    • Antrea Controller
    • Antrea Agents

Functions of the Central Control Plane Adapter

  • Receives the Distributed Firewall (DFW) rules and groups from NSX Central Control Plane, translates them to Antrea policies, and creates Antrea policy CRDs in K8s API.
  • Watches the policy realization status from both K8s network polices and native Antrea policy CRDs and reports the status to NSX Central Control Plane.

Stateless Nature of the Central Control Plane Adapter

The Central Control Plane Adapter is stateless. Each time the adapter restarts or reconnects to K8s API or NSX Manager, it always synchronizes the state with K8s API and NSX Central Control Plane. Resynchronization of the state ensures the following:
  • The latest Antrea policies are always pushed to K8s API as native Antrea policy CRDs.
  • The stale policy CRDs are removed if the corresponding security policies are deleted in NSX-T.