ESXi Mac Learning dvFilter
Release Date: August 28, 2014
- Once learned, a MAC address is never aged out. For very long running ESX VMs with high churn in used MAC addresses (e.g. via nested guest VMs) this may be a problem. If the MAC table of a particular port is full, the MAC learning functionality can no longer improve performance.
- MAC learning is not applied to multicast traffic and multicast traffic will see no performance improvement.
- vSphere ESXi 5.x & ESXi 6.x
For more details, you can refer to this blog post by William Lam
Installation consists of two parts:
- Download and install the VIB on all ESXi hosts:
- Activate the functionality on a per VM basis
1. To install the VIB, you can run the following ESXCLI command if you have uploaded the VIB to an ESXi datastore:
esxcli software vib install -v /vmfs/volumes/[DATASTORE-NAME]/vmware-esx-dvfilter-maclearn-0.1-ESX-5.0.vib -f
A system reboot is not necessary and you can confirm the dvFilter was successfully installed by running the following command:
You should see the dvfilter-maclearn module loaded as seen in the screenshot below:
2. For the dvFilter to work, you will need to add two Advanced Virtual Machine Settings to each of your Nested ESXi VMs. This setting is on a per vNIC basis, which means you will need to add N-entries if you have N-vNICs on your Nested ESXi VM.
This configuration can be performed online without rebooting the Nested ESXi VMs if you leverage the vSphere API. Another way to add this is to shutdown your Nested ESXi VM and use either the “legacy” vSphere C# Client or vSphere Web Client or for those that know how to append and reload the .VMX file as that’s where the configuration file is persisted on disk.
If you normally provision Nested ESXi VMs with 2 vNICs, you will have two corresponding entries. To confirm the settings are loaded, we can re-run the summarize-dvfilter command and we should now see our Virtual Machine listed in the output along with each vNIC instance.
- New VIB to support ESXi 6.5
- Supports ESXi 5.x and 6.0
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