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RS0021 - Nexus 1000V Layer 3 VSM VEM Installation (Manual and VUM) (Part 2)

Average: 5 (2 votes)
Difficulty Level: 
Lab Document: 
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The video walks you through Cisco Nexus 1000V installation in Layer 3 mode. We will explore various methods to install both VSM and VEM so you can be aware of steps involved and determine which method will work best in your deployment. This lab takes what we have discussed on the Nexus 1000V introduction video, and applies them into actual implementation. 

In part 2, we will be installing VEM and migrate our VM behind the VEM.
You can also find detailed discussion on deployment options and more extensive comparison between Layer 2 and Layer 3 mode at the link below.
Topic includes
  • Nexus 1000V Layer 3 Mode
  • VSM Install
    • Primary VSM using OVA (Manually Configure) 
    • Secondary VSM using OVA (Nexus 1000V Secondary)
  • VEM Install (Manual and VMware Update Manager)
  • Port-Profile
  • Control, Management VLAN
  • System Vlan
  • VEM Control (VMkernel) Interface with 'capability l3control'
  • ESXi Hosts Added to vCenter
  • VMware Update Manager Installed
  • Download N1KV Software Package from
  • Installation Parameters
    • vCenter - IP, Username,Password
    • N1KV - Hostname, Password, Mgmt IP, Subnet, GW,(Crtl,Mgmt) Vlan, Domain ID, Layer2/3 etc.

About Author

Metha Cheiwanichakorn, CCIE#23585 (RS, Sec, SP), is a Cisco networking enthusiast with years of experience in the industry. He is currently working as a consulting engineer for a Cisco partner. As a founder of and an instructor at, Metha enjoys learning and challenges himself with new Cisco technologies.


Great video. It helped me to deploy L3 in our enviornemnt.

I just used one vlan for
It is working... is it okay?

Using three VLAN is just Cisco recommended practice. Using a single VLAN would sure work.

Do I need to give IP to Vmotion & Fault Tolerance interfaces in ESXi ?

Yes, those are VMkernel interfaces which require IP.

So , to summarize .. I need only VSM Mgmt , VSM Control (HA) & VEM Control interface to implement L3 ... Is this correct ?

How many IP(s) I require ?

Correct, One for VSM Mgmt, None for HA (L2 only), One per ESXi host for VMkernel VEM Control. 

I have production env. planning to move from L2 to L3 ,can you please help one this and also like to know will there be any Impact on VM's or ESXi while migration from L2 to L3

Since you need to reconfigure both VSM and VEM, most likely they will lose communication to each other but VEM should continue to forward traffic. If you have a large number of ESXi that can potentially be impacted, you might want to consider labbing this out so you will know exactly what wil happen.