Welcome to the first in a new series of articles detailing the migration process of VMware NSX Data Center for vSphere to NSX-T Data Center. The migration to NSX-T will be split into three steps:

  • Part 1 (this article) – Deploy NSX -T Data Center Manager Appliance, and prepare this new NSX-T environment for the migration of NSX Data Center for vSphere by adding a Compute Manager, and creating an IP Pool for Edge Tunnel End Points (TEPs).
  • Part 2 – Prepare NSX Data Center for vSphere for migration to NSX-T, including ESXi host, vSphere Distributed Switch, and NSX-V pre-flight checks (VXLAN, VTEP, Controllers, Edge Services Gateways).
  • Part 3 – Migrate NSX Data Center for vSphere to NSX-T Data Center.

Note – In this article, the process of deploying the VMware NSX-T Data Center Manager Appliance can be considered the same as whether you are a) deploying into a greenfield environment void of any NSX, or b) migrating NSX Data Center for vSphere to NSX-T.

Prerequisites

  • VMware NSX Data Center for vSphere 6.4.4
  • Check VMware Product Interoperability Matrix for compatibility across assets
  • vSphere Distributed Switches running on 6.5.0 or above (both 6.5.0 and 6.6.0 currently supported)
  • VMware Identity Manager must be deployed if you wish to migrate NSX user roles
  • Identify existing IP Pools utilised by NSX Data Center for vSphere VTEPs
  • Identify new IP addresses which will be utilised by NSX-T when creating an IP Pool for Edge TEPs
  • Confirm connectivity between NSX-T TEPs to NSX Data Center for vSphere VTEPs.

In this article…

  1. Deploy NSX-T Data Center NSX Manager Appliance
  2. Add a Compute Manager
  3. Deploy Additional NSX Manager Appliances
  4. Create an IP Pool for Edge Tunnel End Points

1. Deploy NSX-T Data Center NSX Manager Appliance

In this section we will deploy a new NSX-T Manager Appliance. This is in readiness for a later article covering the migration process in detail. As mentioned earlier, the deployment of the NSX-T Manager Appliance is exactly the same whether you are completing the prerequisites for the migration process, or simply deploying NSX-T for the first time.

Note – VMware recommend installing the NSX Manager Appliance(s) on ESXi hosts that are not part of the NSX Data Centre for vSphere environment.

1.1. Download the NSX Manager/NSX Cloud Service Manager for VMware ESXi OVA file from the VMware Portal and Deploy OVF Template.

VMware NSX-T Data Center - Deploy Manager Appliance

1.2. Assign a Virtual Machine Name and click Next.

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1.3. Select a suitable compute resource and click Next.

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1.4. Review details and click Next.

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1.5. Select a deployment configuration and, specifically, the appliance size (for lab environments ExtraSmall is fine, but not supported). When ready, click Next.

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1.6. Select a suitable datastore and click Next.

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1.7. Select a suitable network and click Next.

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1.8. Customise the template by completing the required fields.

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1.9. Once all required fields have been completed, click Next.

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1.10. Review configuration summary and click Next.

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1.11. Monitor deployment for any errors.

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1.12. Once complete, power-on the new NSX-T Manager Appliance.

1.13. When ready, confirm the network configuration has applied successfully by running the below command via CLI.

get interface eth0

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1.14. The NSX Manager Appliance may take some time to bring all services up. If you would like to check the status of the four main services, see below CLI commands.

get service manager
get service policy
get service search
get service ui-service

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1.15. Test connectivity.

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1.16. Launch a web browser, browse to the appliance IP address or FQDN, and login with the admin credentials you assigned as part of the configuration in steps 1.8-1.9.

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1.17. Accept the EULA and click Continue.

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1.18. Opt in/out of the Customer Experience Improvement Program and click Save.

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1.19. Deployment of the NSX-T Data Center NSX Manager Appliance is now complete and, as mentioned previously, this concludes the deployment stage of the NSX Manager Appliance into a greenfield environment.

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2. Add a Compute Manager

In this section we will connect the new NSX-T Manager Appliance to our vCenter Server.

2.1. Browse to System > Fabric > Compute Managers and click +ADD.

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2.2. Assign the name of your vCenter Server, Domain Name/IP Address, set Type to vCenter, and enter the appropriate vCenter credentials. Note, you can opt to populate the vCenter SHA-256 Thumbprint or, if you are sure of the Domain Name/IP Address, simply click ADD.

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2.3. If you opted not to populate the SHA-256 Thumbprint, review the pop-up with your vCenter Server and confirm the below warning and, once happy, click ADD.

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2.4. Once added, the new Compute Manager will need a short while to register.

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2.5. If the Registration Status changes from Connecting to No Registered, click Not Registered, review the error, and click RESOLVE.

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2.6. Enter your vCenter Server credentials and click RESOLVE.

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2.7. Monitor the Registration Status to ensure it now displays Registered, and confirm the Connection Status displays Up.

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3. Deploy Additional NSX Manager Appliances

VMware recommend deploying three NSX Manager Appliances, however, as the deployment detailed in this and future posts takes place within my Ravello lab environment, I have no need for additional appliances.

4. Create an IP Pool for Edge Tunnel End Points

4.1. Browse to Advanced Networking & Security > Inventory > Groups > IP Pools and click +ADD.

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4.2. Add a new IP Pool.

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4.3. Note successful creation of the IP Pool.

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This concludes all preparation tasks required to migrate NSX Data Center for vSphere.

In the next post in this series (VMware NSX-T Data Center Migration – Part 2 – NSX for vSphere (NSX-V) Preliminary Checks) we will take a look at preparing our existing NSX Data Center for vSphere environment for migration, as well as the final migration task itself.

Further Information

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