VMware Lab Manager Network Templates and Virtual Networks explained
If you are familiar with VMware Lab Manager then this won’t be breaking news for you, but if your just getting started or looking for more details. Then I hope this post will help clear up how Network Templates and Virtual Networks work inside of Lab Manager. The ability to create Virtual Networks can be very helpful if you are looking to keep your Lab Manager Workspace separate from others.
There are of course other ways to separate virtual machines within Lab Manager. The most talked about method would be to use network Fencing that is a feature on Lab Manager Physical networks. When using fencing you can hide your configuration behind a virtual router and have the option to allow no in/out bound connection. This works great but can confuse some of your lesser experienced users.
If you don’t have the need to communicate with any servers outside of your configuration then using a Lab Manager Network Template might be easier. If setup properly the Virtual Networks within VMware Lab Manager can make your life easier and allow the IT customers to perform their work without any hand holding. By definition the Network Templates are separate Virtual Networks that can only talk with Virtual Machines within the same configuration. It does not matter if you choose the same Network Template with matching IP scheme on a different configuration the VMs will not communicate to the other workspaces. This is by design and is a good and simple way to create a Sand Box to test in.
If you choose to use IP Static – Pool selection for your Network Template you will assign a block of IP’s and Lab Manager will hand them out to the virtual machines as they are deployed. The IP pool will start over for each different configuration that you deploy so if you have 10 workspaces with 5 VMs each you don’t need 50 IP’s all you really need is 5. Since each Workspace or Configuration starts over at the first address in the pool. This is normal since they are not able to communicate with the other workspaces.
Here is a sample definition of the Lab Managers User guide to sum up Virtual Networks.
Virtual networks are configuration local networks. They exist inside configurations and do not span configurations. Virtual machines connected to a virtual network cannot communicate with virtual machines connected to a different virtual network. Each virtual network that Lab Manager creates is unique and isolated from other virtual networks, even if the networks are based on the same network template.
About Brian Suhr
Brian is a VCDX5-DCV and a Sr. Tech Marketing Engineer at Nutanix and owner of this website. He is active in the VMware community and helps lead the Chicago VMUG group. Specializing in VDI and Cloud project designs. Awarded VMware vExpert status 6 years for 2016 - 2011. VCP3, VCP5, VCP5-Iaas, VCP-Cloud, VCAP-DTD, VCAP5-DCD, VCAP5-DCA, VCA-DT, VCP5-DT, Cisco UCS Design