Wondering how to enable NetFlow in VMware vSphere? Well, it’s pretty easy – you’ll need to have your collector up a running (I’m using ManageEngine’s NetFlow Analyzer trial for testing purposes https://www.manageengine.com/products/netflow/?pos=MEhome&loc=ProdMenu&cat=ITOM)
From there, let’s get into setting up NetFlow in the virtual distributed switch (VDS).
In vSphere, click on the Network icon (#1), then on your VDS (#2), click on Configure (#3) and then NetFlow (#4) – then click Edit (#5), on the right side of the panel
Now configure the NetFlow Settings
- Collector IP address
- Collector port
- Collector domain ID
- Switch IP address – leave it blank if you want to see multiple individual device IP’s, otherwise put in an IP, and the NetFlow collector will see the distributed switch as a single network device instead of as multiple devices corresponding to each host. (Note: In an IPv6 environment, the ESXi hosts ignore the switch IP address)
- These are advanced settings, leave them as is, unless specified
Then click OK to confirm.
Now we need to edit the port group settings:
Find the Port Group(s) you want to see traffic on, right click and select Edit Settings
Click on Monitoring
Change the setting from Disabled
And that’s all – now you have enabled NetFlow on the VDS and the PG – assuming your collector is setup and ready to go, after a few minutes you should begin to see flows similar to what you see below:
Happy NetFlows coming in! Alright, take care and watch for the next blog!
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