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Migrate vCenter to vSphere virtual Distributed Switches

Here we are with a new article on this series on how to Migrate vCenter virtual machine network. The same steps also apply when using the VCSA version. This series is focused on how to migrate the network in our home lab from virtual Standard Switches to Distributed ones on VMware vSphere.

One of the steps in this process of course also includes the option to migrate vCenter as part of the finalization of all operations. For this steps we’ll split this part in two steps: Migrate vCenter virtual machine Networking and next migrate Storage Network associated with virtual machines. Of course this includes the Storage Network the vCenter machine is using. This article focuses on the first part. The latter will be the topic for the next article.

In this step the aim is to migrate vCenter from a virtual Standard Switch to a virtual Distributed Switch whilst the virtual machine is running. Before proceeding I would recommend the following:

The steps as we’ll review in this article are very easy. Having an environment ready for the switch makes all the operations easy with the option to fail-back when required.

At this point we are ready to start!


Migrate vCenter virtual machine network

From the virtual Distributed Switch we are using to manage the infrastructure let’s do a right click to start to start wizard. In this case we’ll go for the third option to migrate virtual machine networking option.

Migrate vCenter virtual Machine

In this step let’s locate the virtual machine or appliance running the vCenter operations. In case the virtual machine has multiple vmnics we can simply select the machine as it is to commit all changes at ones. In alternative we can select only the desired virtual network adapters.

Migrate vCenter VM networking

At this point we can see a list of available Distributed Port Groups on the vDS. Ideally it would be nice to create a separate Port Group just for the vCenter should we want to harden specific settings on the Port Group level. In my environment at the moment I will use the Management Port Group just because it is on different domain broadcast than the vSphere Management traffic. Another example is to place this in the VM traffic Port Group like the VM Production Network and use the VLANs configuration on top.

For now the Management Port Group is fine.

Migrate vCenter network port group

Should we have more vmnics associated to the same VM we also have the option to assign dedicated Network Adapters to specific Port Groups. Very useful when configuring Routers with multiple legs in different networks.

Migrate vCenter assign network port group

And finally a quick summary showing the changes before committing.

Migrate vCenter wizard summary

As soon as the job completes if we visit the configuration of the virtual Distributed Switch we use to manage the Infrastructure we can now see the virtual machine allocated to the desired Port Group with the associated Uplinks.

Migrate vCenter port group

At this point we can go to the settings of the virtual Standard Switch and remove the or free up the vmnic used by the vCenter virtual machine before the migration. The vmnic0 is now ready to be used by the virtual Distributed Switch.

Migrate vCenter port group uplink

We have completed the steps on to migrate vCenter to vSphere Distributed Switch. In the next article we’ll review the steps to migrate the Storage Network to a virtual Distributed Switch in vSphere.


About the author

Michele Domanico

Passionate about Virtualization, Storage, Data Availability and Software Defined Data Center technologies. The aim of Domalab.com is sharing with the Community the knowledge and experience gained with customers, industry leaders and like minded peers. Always open to constructive feedback and new challenges.

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