NSX-T Edge Ports blocked on N-VDS

Recently I activated Tanzu with NSX-T in my homelab. After some hurdles in the planning phase, the configuration worked fine and also north-south routing worked flawlessly. My edge nodes established BGP peering with the physical router and advertised new routes. New segments are immediately available without further configuratiom on the router.

One feature that distinguishes my lab from a production environment is that it doesn’t run 24/7. After the work is done, the whole cluster is shut down and the system is powered off. An idle cluster makes a lot of noise and consumes unnecessary energy.

Recently I booted the lab and observed that no communication with the router or DNS server was possible from my NSX segments. A perfect case for troubleshooting.

First I checked the Geneve tunnels between the transport nodes. Here everything was fine and every transport node was able to communicate with every other transport node. The root cause was quickly located in the edge nodes. Neither a reboot of the edges nor a vMotion to another host did improve the situation.

The Edges weren’t completely offline. They were administrable using the management network. Traceroute was working via T1 and T0 service routers up to the fastpath interface fp-eth0. From there, no packets were forwarded.

The interface fp-eth0 is connected to the distributed port group “Edge-Trunk” on vSwitch VDS-NSX. A quick check in the vSphere client showed that the uplink ports of both edges were blocked. Not in the “down” state, but blocked.

At this point, I would ask a customer what he has changed. But I am very sure that I did not make any changes to the system or the configuration. Yes, they all say that 😉

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NSX-T Update Procedure

On October 20th 2020 VMware released NSX-T version 3.1 (release notes).

Upgrade from version 3.0

I’ll outline the process of upgrading from version 3.0.x to version 3.1. In the example shown, a base version 3.0.2 is upgraded, but the process is the same for all versions from 3.0.

Requirements

We’ll need an upgrade bundle (MUB) from VMware download site (login required).

Upgrade

First we need to login to NSX-T Manager. Go to section Lifecycle Management and select Upgrade. You’ll see your current version on the right. Start the process with Upgrade NSX.

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Using more than one dvSwitch for overlay traffic in a VCF 4.0.1 VxRail cluster

SDDC-Manager is the central management tool in a vCloud Foundation (VCF) environment. You can add workload domains, import clusters to workload domains (WLD) or add Kubernetes namespaces. For every task there’s workflow in the GUI of SDDC-Manager.

Currently, as of version VCF 4.0.1, it is not possible to add a cluster with more than two uplinks and more than one vdSwitch to a WLD. If you try to do that in the GUI, you can only define one dvSwitch with two uplinks.

What now?

There’s help inside SDDC-manager.

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Basic Setup vRNI 5.0

VMware vRealize Network Insight (vRNI) – a.k.a “Verni” – version 5.0 was released in late 2019 and can be obtained from the VMware vRNI download page.

I will briefly describe the setup process here. First of all, the approx. 6 GB image file of the appliance must be loaded from VMware Downloads (login required). The appliance needs to be deployed into an existing cluster via the “Deploy OVF Template” wizard of vSphere-Client.

Deployment of the Platform Appliance (Collector)

There’s some naming confusion. The collector appliance is now called “platform” appliance. This makes it a bit difficult to find if you search for the collector in the download portal. 😉

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