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Beginner

Read-Only VMM Domain

Hi all,

 

What is the purpose of having a read-only VMM domain and attaching it to an EPG?

 

Only benefit mentioned in configuration guide is being able to see the vCenter inventory. Is there more to that?

 

Thanks.

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8 REPLIES 8
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Collaborator

Re: Read-Only VMM Domain

Hi aertural1,

This turned out to be a bit more comlicated to answer that I originally thought - so let be begin with at backgrounder that might help readers who are not that familiar with VMM Domains - this allows me to refer back to this section later:

Backgrouder

As you probably know, a regular VMM Domain has two jobs in ACI

  1. It holds the credentials to a vCenter instance somewhere, and uses those credentials to log into that vCenter and create
    1. a Folder in that vCenter in the given Datacenter (created with the same name as the VMM Domain)
    2. a VMware Distributed Switch (VDS) for that vCenter (also created with the same name as the VMM Domain)
      • Note: The above is important to understand when I discuss Read Only VMM Domains later
  2. It provides a link between:
    1. a set of phyical ports where ESXi hosts that are being managed by that vCenter are attached; and
    2. a dynamic range of VLANs (or VXLANs) in a pool that can be allocate on demand; and
    3. the EPGs that ultimately have EPs that attach via the VDS in thos ESXi hosts

When you associate an EPG with a VMM Domain, ACI creates a portgroup on the VDS using a VLAN fromt the VLAN pool. Now any VMs that are added to that portgroup are automatically members of the EPG

Now on to Read Only VMM Domains 

Read Only VMM Domains 

It is quite possible, and even likely that there are other vCenter instances within the organisation that are NOT associated with ACI.

So what if you want to map those existing VMs to EPGs in ACI?

The idea of the "read-only" VMM is to allow you to add login credentials for a vCenter you wish to see information about under ACI's  Virtual Networking tab, but without actually creating a VDS - in fact, to make Read-only VMM Domains work, you have to:

  1. manually go to vCenter and create a Folder with the same name as the VDS you wish to use in yourRead-only VMM Domain
  2. Place that DVS in this folder
  3. use the exact same name as the VDS to create your Read-only VMM Domain
    • In other words, you've simulated what the normal VMM Domain does
  4. Make sure the VMM Domain is in an Access Policy Chain that defines
    1. a set of phyical ports where ESXi hosts that are being managed by that vCenter are attached; and
    2. a STATIC range of VLANs in a DYNAMIC pool - these VLANs are the ones you have already MANUALLY assigned to the portgroups in your VDS

Now this is where things get different, and I have to admit I may not have the detail quite right - if I get a chance to test it I'll edit this response and verify

You still associate the EPG with the VMM Domain, but you now have to manually assign the VLAN to the EPG as a static mapping (at least that's my understanding)

The end result is that it gives you a way of integrating existing DVSs with ACI, but not the flexibility of dynamically assigned VLANs.

I hope this helps


Don't forget to mark answers as correct if it solves your problem. This helps others find the correct answer if they search for the same problem


 

 

RedNectar
aka Chris Welsh


Don't forget to mark answers as correct if it solves your problem. This helps others find the correct answer if they search for the same problem

Highlighted
Beginner

Re: Read-Only VMM Domain

Firstly, thanks a lot for a quick reply.

I test it on our lab, I did the exact things until last step. I could not find a way to associate VLAN Pool and Read-Only VMM domain. Since, while creating read-only VMM domain, it does not let you choose a vlan pool. Hence, when I attach VMM Domain to EPG, it gives the fault with F0565 code: "Deployment of EPG uni/tn-TTT/ap-AAA/epg-EEE failed on domain READ_ONLY_TEST due to No valid encapsulation identifier allocated for the epg."

Highlighted
Cisco Employee

Re: Read-Only VMM Domain

Hi Aertural,

 

Just one thing you can quickly check, while attaching read only VMM domain to your EPG there should be encap section where you can manually assign vlan id.

 

Regards,

Jayesh

 

 

Highlighted
Beginner

Re: Read-Only VMM Domain


@Jayesh Singh  wrote:

Hi Aertural,

 

Just one thing you can quickly check, while attaching read only VMM domain to your EPG there should be encap section where you can manually assign vlan id.

 

Regards,

Jayesh

 

 


Hi,

 

Yes, there is. However, when a vlan-id is statically assigned, it gives above fault (F0565). If you do not assign any vlan-id, everything seems OK (no faults), but it has no use.

 

Regards.

Highlighted
Cisco Employee

Re: Read-Only VMM Domain

Have you created static vlan pool  and that vlan id is added in that vlan pool?

Highlighted
Beginner

Re: Read-Only VMM Domain

Yes, I have created VLAN pool.. But there is no way to associate VLAN pool and read-only VMMdomain.
Highlighted
Cisco Employee

Re: Read-Only VMM Domain

Hi Aertural,

I am getting the same result in my lab.

 

Just a theory, read only vmm domain is for visibility of vmm inventories. ACI can't push any config on the DVS. So that means, servers have to be onboarded just like physical servers with static port binding in EPG.

 

I think you need to do static port binding in the EPG with ports which are connecting to the server. Vlan id cooresponding to port group has to be configured during static port binding. Also, physical domain has to be attached to the EPG.

 

Sorry I am replying from mobile device so not able to share detailed steps.

 

Regards,

Jayesh

 

Highlighted
Collaborator

Re: Read-Only VMM Domain

Wow. This is getting interesting. I won't have time today (or tomorrow probably) to test this. Hopefully on Thursday I'll have a chance.  In theory, it SHOULD be able to be done:

"You can associate an EPG to the VMM domain and configure policies for it. " (https://www.cisco.com/c/en/us/td/docs/switches/datacenter/aci/apic/sw/3-x/virtualization/b_ACI_Virtualization_Guide_3_1_1/b_ACI_Virtualization_Guide_3_1_1_chapter_011.html#concept_pms_xtn_wcb)

So if you can configure polices, you must be able to link the policies by VLAN association - unless it links the policies by some other means. Perhaps EPG Name=Port Group Name? But that's a long shot.

RedNectar
aka Chris Welsh


Don't forget to mark answers as correct if it solves your problem. This helps others find the correct answer if they search for the same problem

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