Networking is one of the most important and critical components of any IT architecture. Architects always want to lay the foundation and solve networking before compute and storage is looked at. This is why I have always felt the need to understand networking better and understand how things work.
Network virtualization technology gave me a behind the scenes, hands-on look at how networking works and the concepts that made it happen. The ability to deploy virtual appliances such as switches, load balancers, and routers and examine their functionality was very appealing. The pace at which I learned network virtualization gave me the confidence to grow in a field that I thought I lacked significant knowledge in. Throughout my journey, I understood that network virtualization not only made me think like a network engineer but also made me apply networking concepts very creatively to a virtualized environment, and this made it all the more appealing. What was complex before now became extremely simple.
The journey started in 2015 when I went around presenting at multiple VMUG UserCon sessions all around the country. My presentation was Getting started with VMware NSX - basics and best practices. My aim here was not to talk about what NSX can do but to talk about how easy it was to get started and to squash some common misconceptions about NSX. I wasn't sure if this was a topic worth talking about and wasn't expecting a large crowd. My time slot to present was right after lunch, which wasn't very appealing.
I was quickly proved wrong. In each and every city I presented, all of my sessions were completely full. People were eager to see how to get started with NSX and in fact, preferred this presentation over any NSX presentations happening at the same conference. This is when the first edition of Learning VMware NSX was born. Following the tremendous reception and feedback, we decided to have this second edition to ensure continuity and address changes in the network virtualization technology.
The aim of the book is to connect to that day-to-day administrator and that network engineer and make it easy for them to understand NSX. The book explains the basics and covers the deployment of various features of network virtualization in simple, clear language and with screenshots to allow you to visualize the workflow as you read.
I hope you enjoy working with this second of edition Learning VMware NSX, and that it helps you learn how to use and understand NSX and network virtualization. We are constantly looking for feedback and advice, so feel free to reach out to us by all means necessary.
Chapter 1, Introduction to Network Virtualization, gets you started with an introduction to network virtualization and an overview of its concepts.
Chapter 2, NSX Core Concepts, talks about all the different components of NSX and how they work together.
Chapter 3, NSX Installation and Configuration, covers deploying and configuring NSX.
Chapter 4, NSX Functional Services, discusses the deployment and configuration of different NSX services such as logical switching, L2 bridging, and Edge gateway services.
Chapter 5, Edge Services Gateway, goes deeper into the services offered by Edge gateway and looks at deploying and configuring them.
Chapter 6, Service Composer, discusses different NSX security policies, because one of the most important capabilities of NSX is its security features.
Chapter 7, Monitoring, looks at enabling the monitoring of our environment using NSX.
Chapter 8, Managing NSX, talks about NSX administrative tasks such as backup and restore along with NSX manager settings.
Chapter 9, Conclusion, concludes the second edition of the Learning VMware NSX series and provides additional reference links and author contact information.
Although you can dive right into this book, I recommend setting up a modest home lab of three servers running VMware ESXi and vCenter. You are also encouraged to spend time exploring the hands-on labs offered for free by VMware. The specific NSX labs that will help you greatly are HOL-1703- SDC-1 and HOL-1703- USE-2. The labs help you get started with NSX without having to worry about the intricacies of having to set it up.
You can get to hands-on labs by visiting http://labs.hol.vmware.com and searching for the two labs I mentioned previously.
The book is for anyone who is interested in learning more about software-defined network virtualization tools. System administrators, network administrators, solution engineers, sales engineers, and solution architects are some of those who will find this book very educational.
In this book, you will find a number of text styles that distinguish between different kinds of information. Here are some examples of these styles and an explanation of their meaning. Code words in text, database table names, folder names, filenames, file extensions, pathnames, dummy URLs, user input, and Twitter handles are shown as follows: "Log in to the NSX manager with the username
admin and the password that was set during deployment time."
A block of code is set as follows:
acl is_foo hdr_dom(host) -i foo acl is_bar hdr_dom(host) -i bar use_backend pool_1 if is_foo use_backend pool_2 if is_bar
Any command-line input or output is written as follows:
[root@host:~] esxcli softwarev vib list | grep esx
New terms and important words are shown in bold. Words that you see on the screen, for example, in menus or dialog boxes, appear in the text like this: "You will see the
Deploy OVF Template screen."
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We also provide you with a PDF file that has color images of the screenshots/diagrams used in this book. The color images will help you better understand the changes in the output. You can download this file from https://www.packtpub.com/sites/default/files/downloads/LearningVMwareNSXSecondEdition_ColorImages.pdf.
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