I have a requirement to build a HA cluster, DRS, VMotion etc using iSCSI Datastores but with hosts with only two NICs.
Ideally I want full resiliency so that if a NIC fails another one takes over.
Normally I'd keep storage traffic on different vSwitches / Port Groups with two physical NICs each.
Any recommedations on the best way to do this, without purchasing additional NICs?
Use one nic for iscsi and other nic for vmotion,drs on other nic
check this blog as well
you just want things to work, i will do a dedicated iSCSI (to ensure that the disk performance are there) and the rest combined. ultimately the best is still buying additional card maybe off ebay (used parts).
I would create a single vSwitch. Configure the vmkernel port for iSCSI to be active on vmnic1 and standby on vmnic0. Configure the other VM / vmkernel port groups to be active on vmnic0 and standby on vmnic1. That way they won't interfere with storage traffic unless there is a NIC failure.
If you're using Enterprise Plus you can also use network I/O control to cap / control traffic types.
I concur. Two NIC's, while not ideal, is perfectly functional. It's often all that is available with basic blades. I have a lab environment where, with only two NIC's we do WAN, LAN, Redundant iSCSI and vMotion; and get it all done quite successfully. The only conflict, whether to make one of the iSCI vmkernel's do double-duty as vMotion as well or to create a separate vMotion vmkernel. Either way, one of the NIC's is going to end up doing double duty.
In order for this setup to make any sense at all, port binding must be completed, otherwise all of the traffic will end up on one NIC/vmkernel.
Here's a screenshot of the completed setup:
Here is the overall vSwitch0 Properties:
Here's a shot of the active/unused you need to get Port Binding to work (do the reverse for the other iSCSI vmkernel):
And finally, here's the vmkernel Network properties. Once you have done the previous steps, just click "add":
Hope this helps