The capacity of the physical adapters determines the bandwidth that you guarantee. According to this capacity, you can guarantee minimum bandwidth to a system feature for its optimal operation.

For example, on a distributed switch that is connected to ESXi hosts with 10 GbE network adapters, you might configure reservation to guarantee 1 Gbps for management through vCenter Server, 1 Gbps for iSCSI storage, 1 Gbps for vSphere Fault Tolerance, 1 Gbps for vSphere vMotion traffic, and 0.5 Gbps for virtual machine traffic. Network I/O Control allocates the requested bandwidth on each physical network adapter. You can reserve no more than 75 percent of the bandwidth of a physical network adapter, that is, no more than 7.5 Gbps.

You might leave more capacity unreserved to let the host allocate bandwidth dynamically according to shares, limits, and use, and to reserve only bandwidth that is enough for the operation of a system feature.

Figure 1. Example Bandwidth Reservation for System Traffic on a 10 GbE Physical Network Adapter


You can reserve a part of the capacity of a host physical adapter for the traffic of a system feature, such as vCenter Server management, vSphere vMotion, iSCSI, and so on.