Confusion about VDS and my converting local vSwitches

I have brought on a twin server to act as a split load / fail-over high available server. The primary server currently running all VMs have all networks implemented using local vSwitch configuration. Now that I need to be able to seamlessly move VMs back and forth I need the VDS configuration. I have been reading about it in the VMware documentation and checking out some lab blog posts but am a bit confused about my particular setup.

Most of the VMs are simply connected to a number of umbrella VLANs, setup as five different virtual switches sharing two different physical interfaces – one denoting two different LAN segments connected to one physical interface, another denoting three different WAN segments connected to another interface. However I have a customer with his own vLANs and have created three vSwitches for him. They are connected to the same physical interface as the other LAN segments.

I created VDSes each for his vSwitches (CUST1, CUST2, CUST3) as well as for my local LAN VLANs that also share that physical interface (vnic0). The uplink ports and port groups were subsequently created. When I went to assign these VDSes to the two servers, on the server which his VMs and vSwitches are active I became confused as I can only select a physical interface once. However in the local vSwitch creation I can point multiple switches to the same main switch / physical NIC its connected to. I bypassed the choice of the physical NIC and instead assigned just the VMK and then when I went to assign his VMs, it changed the port group of his local interface to the VDS port group but the local vSwitch name stayed the same. I also wasn’t able to move it via migration to the secondary server during testing because of them being “virtual intranetworks” incompatibility according to the migrate wizard.

How do I reconcile these VDSes with the vSwitches? I imagined there’d be a 1:1 mapping but this doesn’t seem to be the case in the way I understand it. Can anyone shed some light on what I do here and what I’m not understanding?



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  1. A VDS is a bit overkill to be honest.

    Run a VSS and create a vmotion network on it.

    If this is a lab

    I’d still work on getting a VSS vmotion working first. The VDS can be a complex ball game.

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