1 reply Latest Post - ‏2013-02-01T08:19:35Z by SystemAdmin
3234 Posts

Pinned topic BladeCenter S, 2 x HS23 blades with CFFh, 2 x GbESM to 2 x HP A5120

‏2013-02-01T08:10:09Z |

We're running BladeCenter S and are in the process of upgrading our ESX servers to two HS23 blades with the 2/4 port expansion card (CFFh). We have two GbESM switches which connect to two HP A5120 switches running as IRF members.

Please advice on how to configure the networking, as I cant seem to find any understandable documentation on how two GbESM switches should be configured.

The ESX servers are seeing two Emulex NICs (vmnic2 and 3) along with two Broadcom NICs (vmnic4 and 5). So vmnic2 and 3 are connected to the first GbESM in bay 1 while vmnic4 and 5 are connected to the second GbESM in bay 2.

The idea is to run two 6 port "trunks" with all necessary VLANs from both GbESM's to the HP switch. We have created the necessary base configuration in each GbESM switch turning on LACP and assigning the same adminkey to EXT1 - EXT6 ports. HP switch has the same configuration with link aggregation interfaces (3 ports in each switch). In essence the HP switch acts like it's a single switch and thus should not be of any concern at this point.


In the ESX servers we have two viable options on how to configure NIC teaming: "Route base on the originating virtual port ID" (default) and "Route based on IP hash". Which is better and why? Currently we have the default option.

Can we make a single vSwitch with all 4 NICs, even though they are connected to different GbESM's or do we have to make two vSwitches? Currently we have only vmnic2 and 3 in the vSwitch 0.

What kind of configuration is necessary on the GbESM's, as they are appearing as two totally different switches? Should the two switches have different adminkeys on the 6 port LACP "channels/trunks" or does it matter?

Please advice.
Updated on 2013-02-01T08:19:35Z at 2013-02-01T08:19:35Z by SystemAdmin
  • SystemAdmin
    3234 Posts

    Re: BladeCenter S, 2 x HS23 blades with CFFh, 2 x GbESM to 2 x HP A5120

    ‏2013-02-01T08:19:35Z  in response to SystemAdmin
    Also - I don't know if this matters - but we have iSCSI traffic in the mix as well.

    The current plan is to run the iSCSI VLAN as tagged along with the other VLANs. Should we separate some of the ports (ie. 2) in each GbESM just for the iSCSI traffic or is it better to have 6 Gbps link with all VLANs as tagged? I am leaning towards the latter option if it doesn't any serious drawbacks.