Book Image

Learning VMware NSX - Second Edition

By : Ranjit Singh Thakurratan
Book Image

Learning VMware NSX - Second Edition

By: Ranjit Singh Thakurratan

Overview of this book

VMware NSX is a platform for the software-defined data center. It allows complex networking topologies to be deployed programmatically in seconds. SDNs allow ease of deployment, management, and automation in deploying and maintaining new networks while reducing and in some cases completely eliminating the need to deploy traditional networks. The book allows you a thorough understanding of implementing Software defined networks using VMware’s NSX. You will come across the best practices for installing and configuring NSX to setup your environment. Then you will get a brief overview of the NSX Core Components NSX’s basic architecture. Once you are familiar with everything, you will get to know how to deploy various NSX features. Furthermore, you will understand how to manage and monitor NSX and its associated services and features. In addition to this, you will also explore the best practices for NSX deployments. By the end of the book, you will be able to deploy Vmware NSX in your own environment with ease. This book can come handy if you are preparing for VMware NSX certification.
Table of Contents (17 chapters)
Title Page
About the Author
About the Reviewer
Customer Feedback


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.

What this book covers

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.

What you need for this book

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 and searching for the two labs I mentioned previously.

Who this book is for

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."


Warnings or important notes appear like this.


Tips and tricks appear like this.

Reader feedback

Feedback from our readers is always welcome. Let us know what you think about this book-what you liked or disliked. Reader feedback is important for us as it helps us develop titles that you will really get the most out of. To send us general feedback, simply email [email protected], and mention the book's title in the subject of your message. If there is a topic that you have expertise in and you are interested in either writing or contributing to a book, see our author guide at

Customer support

Now that you are the proud owner of a Packt book, we have a number of things to help you to get the most from your purchase.

Downloading the color images of this book

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


Although we have taken every care to ensure the accuracy of our content, mistakes do happen. If you find a mistake in one of our books-maybe a mistake in the text or the code-we would be grateful if you could report this to us. By doing so, you can save other readers from frustration and help us improve subsequent versions of this book. If you find any errata, please report them by visiting, selecting your book, clicking on the Errata Submission Form link, and entering the details of your errata. Once your errata are verified, your submission will be accepted and the errata will be uploaded to our website or added to any list of existing errata under the Errata section of that title. To view the previously submitted errata, go to and enter the name of the book in the search field. The required information will appear under the Errata section.


Piracy of copyrighted material on the internet is an ongoing problem across all media. At Packt, we take the protection of our copyright and licenses very seriously. If you come across any illegal copies of our works in any form on the internet, please provide us with the location address or website name immediately so that we can pursue a remedy. Please contact us at [email protected] with a link to the suspected pirated material. We appreciate your help in protecting our authors and our ability to bring you valuable content.


If you have a problem with any aspect of this book, you can contact us at [email protected], and we will do our best to address the problem.