For NSX-T Edge nodes, you determine the form factor and the appliance number and place according to the requirements for network services in the workload domain.

An NSX-T Edge node is an appliance that provides centralized networking services which can not be distributed to hypervisors, such as load balancing, NAT, VPN, and physical network uplinks. Some services, such as T-0 gateways, are limited to a single instance per NSX-T Edge node. However, most services can coexist in these nodes.

NSX-T Edge nodes are grouped in one or more Edge Clusters, representing a pools of capacity for NSX-T Data Center services.

Form Factors of NSX-T Edge Nodes

An NSX-T Edge node can be deployed as a virtual appliance or installed on bare metal hardware. The edge node on bare-metal hardware can have better performance capabilities at the expense of more difficult deployment and limited deployment topology use cases.

Design Component

Edge Virtual Appliance

Edge Bare Metal Appliance

Considerations

Ease of deployment and ease of expansion

↑↑

  • You can deploy NSX-T Edge virtual appliances by using the vSphere Client user interface or via SDDC Manager automated deployment.

  • Deployment of bare metal appliances have certain hardware compatibility requirements and must be manually deployed and connected to the environment.

Ease of upgrade and life cycle management

o

  • NSX-T Manager provides life cycle management for associated NSX-T Edge nodes.

  • NSX-T Edge nodes on bare metal hardware require individual hardware life cycle management of firmware, drivers, and so on.

Manageability

↑↑

o

NSX-T Edge nodes on bare metal hardware require individual monitoring and management of the hardware, such as failures, firmware, and so on.

Availability and recoverability

↑↑

  • If an ESXi host running an NSX-T Edge virtual appliance node fails, vSphere HA automatically restarts the appliance on a remaining ESXi host in the vSphere Cluster.

  • If a failure of an NSX-T Edge node on bare metal hardware occurs, it must be redeployed.

Capability

o

o

NSX-T Edge virtual appliances and NSX-T Edge nodes on bare metal hardware provide the same network services.

Design agility

NSX-T Edge nodes on bare metal hardware do not support multiple availability zones.

Performance

↑↑

  • In certain use cases, an NSX-T Edge node on bare metal hardware can support more raw performance and lower latency.

  • The performance of an NSX-T Edge virtual appliance depends on the underlying ESXi host. To improve performance, migrate the appliance to a host that has higher performance.

Capacity

o

  • In rare use cases, an NSX-T Edge node on bare metal hardware can support more raw capacity.

  • NSX-T Edge virtual appliance can easily be scaled up and down as needed.

Sizing Compute and Storage Resources for NSX-T Edge Nodes

When you size the resources for NSX-T components, consider the compute and storage requirements for each component, and the number of nodes per component type.

Table 1. Resource Specifications of NSX-T Edge Nodes per Form Factor

Form Factor

Appliance Size

CPU or vCPU

Memory (GB)

Storage (GB)

NSX-T Edge on bare metal hardware

Minimum requirements

-

8 CPU

8

200

Recommended requirements

-

24 CPU

265

500

NSX-T Edge virtual appliance

Small

Use for proof of concept only

2 vCPU

4

200

Medium

4 vCPU

8

200

Large

Use in large environments that require load balancers

8 vCPU

32

200

Extra Large

16

64

200

Table 2. Design Decisions on the Form Factor and Sizing for the NSX-T Edge Nodes

Design ID

Design Decision

Design Justification

Design Implication

  • The deployment and life cycle management of virtual edges node is simpler.

  • You can migrate virtual machine form factor between physical locations to support advanced deployment topologies such as multiple availability zones.

None.