1000v demo running under vmware workstation ?

Unanswered Question
Feb 25th, 2010


I'm trying to build a 1000v demo lab all under workstation. And so far I've been unable too

My stumbling block is that I don't get the VEM to talk to the VSM.

In order to run under workstation, I had to run the VSM directly under workstation and not inside an ESX/ESXi.

The VEM is, obviously, in an ESX. I have some kind of connectivity issue between them, and I'd love to have some troubleshooting info to fix this.

The VEM says it's not hearing the VSM heart bit.

Is there any document that has more info on the VEM/VSM connection ? I've played with vemcmd a little, but a doc would be great.

In fact, I've no idea why a vemport shows sometimes as admin down.

Help is welcome. Thanks in advance.


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cgm Fri, 02/26/2010 - 12:43

That's (painfully) already been taken care of

All is pointing at missing dot1q at the workstation vswitch and not very clear indication

of how to use dedicated access interfaces for VSM/VEM comm.

Can you help ?

cgm Sun, 02/28/2010 - 10:13

Well, it seems it's doable. I'm still not sure how, but it's working.

VSM is talking to VEM and module is up.

It seems that L2 is the way to go, but using a VEM controlled pnic to force it to go access mode.

In L3 mode, even though I had L3 reachability between mgmt and the esx, the VEM and the VSM would

not see each other.

All this is induced by vmware workstation switch not doing 802.1q, so in real life, this is

kind of pointless. But in training life, being able to run a 1000v inside a workstation is something

that makes (my) life easier.

I say I don't know how it's working because I have 2 workstation nets: vmnet1 and vmnet2.

The 1000v VSM has it's 3 vnics mapped to vmnet2/vmnet1/vmnet2 (control/mgmt/packet)

and the ESX has also 3 vnics mapped to vmnet1/vmnet1/vmnet2.Each vmnet is bridged to

its own pnic, and they are connected to 2 3560 ports, access mode to different vlans (1&2)

Now, vmnic0 is is a vswitch with console access. Vmnic1 and vmnic2 are both in the VDS,

one is system-uplink and the other l3control (profiles):

port-profile type ethernet system-uplink
  vmware port-group
  switchport mode trunk
  switchport access vlan 1
  switchport trunk native vlan 1
  switchport trunk allowed vlan 1
  no shutdown
  system vlan 1
  state enabled

port-profile type ethernet l3control
   vmware port-group
   switchport mode access
   switchport access vlan 1
   no shutdown
   system vlan 1
   state enabled

Note that I was trying hard to get traffic into vlan 1

But...vCenter info on this last port says it's VLAN2. Still lots to learn about this.

cgm Fri, 03/19/2010 - 06:20

I don't like that much replaying to myself, but for the record:

Learning is fun, sometimes It seems that, after all, workstation vswitch is kind of 802.1q capable.

Kind of, because proper term would be transparent. The vswitch in workstation actually does not care of vlan tags, so if your uplink is a trunk, all your vnics are trunks too. I was misslead by the windows driver filtering the tags in a test.

Other thing that is getting in the way is that somehow vmware insist in VLAN1 being native.

And that 1000v VSM assumes access ports into vlans. All this needs some thinking to get control packets get L2 connectivity between VSM and VEM.

But if you have an external switch and 2 real NICs, it can be done. Playing with VLAN1 as control seems to work too. I have not been able to find L3 control documentation...

If anybody cares about all this, please raise your hand (virtually of course) or else, this is it for me here.



rou2a.manon Sun, 07/24/2011 - 04:06

Hi there,

I had installed the VSM under ESXi which itself installed in VMware workstation for testing and it's working fine.

All you need to do is change the OS from 64bit to 32bit by changing the vm properties.

the 1000v ver is 4.2.1

cgm Sun, 07/24/2011 - 04:32


How is that 32 or 64 bits is changing the way network connections work ?

Would you please be a litle bit less terse, and share the network configuration

of the VSM you used ? Also, VSM has changed for sure fin 1 1/2 years...


rou2a.manon Sun, 07/24/2011 - 13:06

It does not change how the network connections works.

All I'm saying is instead of testing 1000v on workstation you can installed directly on a virtual esx server installed inside workstation.

cgm Sun, 07/24/2011 - 14:09

Sorry, I don't understand the whole picture. But since my initial problem was network related,

I guess it would be helpfull if you share the whole network configuration.

That should not take long.



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