Validate Network Connectivity Across A VMware Cluster

It’s the network team’s fault…

The Scenario

Imagine you have an environment that has hundreds of VLANs. When you build a new cluster, there’s a real possibility that one host out of many is mis-configured on just a single port group or VLAN. It’s a pretty simple issue, but it’s like finding a needle in a haystack. Because of that, it’s incredibly difficult to troubleshoot, so I wrote a script to run through every ESXi host, and test connectivity on each port group.

How do we achieve this?

To recap, the goal here is to test network connectivity on all VLANs on all ESXi hosts in a cluster. The best way to do this is by creating a VMKernel port on each Port Group, and pinging a separate IP on the network from that VMKernel port. Once the ping results are recorded, the VMKernel port is deleted. Rinse and repeat for every VLAN on every ESXi host. The script will pull all info required for creating the VMKernel ports from a CSV file.

Example Output

This is an example of the output you will get from running this script

CSV File Details

The CSV file will contain the following fields: IP, GW, PG, NetMask, VLAN. Each row in the CSV will contain deails for a single VMKernel port. Here’s an example:

In the example above, three VMKernel ports will be created on every ESXi host in the cluster, and a ping attempt will occur to the IP listed in the “gw” column from the entry in the “IP” column.

The Script

Now to the fun part, and why you’re actually here. First and foremost, you can see a copy of GitHub Repository.

To run this script, you’ll need to pass variables as parameters or modify the default values. For example, you can run the script like this:

  • vCenter Server (-vcenterserver)
  • The VDS in use (-vswitch)
  • The desired cluster you want to focus on (-clustername)
  • The CSV that contains info for the VMKernel ports (-csvpath)
  • If you want verbose output printed to the screen (-verbose:$true/$false)

Code Overview (and code)

Lines 1-17
Documentation and parameters

Lines 18-30
Set up the environment, connect to vCenter, import the CSV, get the list of ESXi hosts to work with

Lines 31–33
Begin loop that goes through all ESXi hosts

Lines 34-36
Begin loop for each VMKernel port

Lines 37-50
Create splatting for variables
Instantiate object

Lines 51-70
Create the VMKernel adapter, test the ping, optionally print verbose logging

Lines 71-80
Add results to an array

Lines 81-82
Remove the VMKernel port

Line 85-97
This block exists to handle an error with creating the VMKernel port.

Line 100
Add the results of the ping test to an array

Line 105-107
Output the array of results and disconnect from the vcenter server

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