ianfuller
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Contributor

VMXNET3 adapters in Windows Server 2019 fail and require disable/re-enable to restore

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Hello,

We are currently building out a new environment with ESXi 6.7 and Windows Server 2019. We have noticed a strange issue where randomly servers will fail to respond. No ping, no RDP, other traffic works against the system. We are still able to access the VMRC console and log into the system from which we can see that we are unable to ping the local gateway or other resources. Otherwise the system and other systems appear perfectly fine. If we disable the windows NIC and then re-enable, the issue will go away.

The NICs are VMXNET3, the VMware Tools are 10.3.10, build-12406962, the ESXi host is 6.7.0, 15018017.

Normally I would try the E1000 NICs to see if it's a VMXNET3 driver issue but the environment is 10G and I have been told the E1000 don't support 10G.

What could be causing this issue and how can we prevent it?

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ianfuller
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Contributor

Sorry for the long delay.

We updated the system to push VMTools 11.x and we have not seen any further instances of the problem. I believe there must be a bug in the 10.x tools that are default with ESXi 6.7

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pragg12
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Hi,

Welcome to VMTN. 🙂

Can you test with VMware Tools 11.0.1 on a fresh, vanilla install of Windows Server 2019 through ISO and share your findings ? Also, which version of 2019 are you using ?

https://my.vmware.com/group/vmware/details?downloadGroup=VMTOOLS1101&productId=614

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ianfuller
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I'm using the VMware tools that come from the ESXi host install option. Are VMware tools available via the download site and is it compatible with other versions of ESXi that don't bundle them? If a later version is available, why is it not available from ESXi?


I'm using Windows Server 2019 Datacenter Desktop Experience.

I did look back through the windows event logs and noticed around the time the connectivity issues started that there were some MSI installs including MicrosoftPolicyPlatform.msi so I'm currently investigating whether the automatic SCCM agent deploy is causing the problem.

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pragg12
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VMware decided to separate the release cycle of VMware Tools from vSphere because if there's a bug in VMware Tools, you would have to wait for a new version of vSphere before. Now, VMware releases new version of VMware Tools and they are compatible with ESXi.

Updates to VM Compatibility and VMware Tools with vSphere 6.7 Update 2

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ianfuller
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Appreciate the reply. To keep you updated:

I discovered another server with the same issue today. Interestingly the time around which the NIC went bad appeared to be within an hour of the other server. There were no indications of MSI installs on this one however, so the SCCM agent install may not be related at all.
We are looking to push the VMtools to 11 to see what happens.

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pragg12
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Keep us posted on what happens. I have few questions.

1. What are your observations on this ?

2. Do you see a common pattern like this issue happening for a single VLAN or a particular group of VLANs or occurrence/re-occurrence of issue on new/current VM ?

3. Is the network infrastructure new or old ? In case of new, do verify that network settings are configured correctly.

4. If using dvswitch, verify that you use optimal port group load balancing option per discussion with Network team.

5. Verify if all VLANs are trunked on all NICs of ESXi host which are in vswitch/dvswitch.

Any configuration issue in above may be the cause of your issue.

Consider marking this response as "Correct" or "Helpful" if you think my response helped you in any way.
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ianfuller
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Sorry for the long delay.

We updated the system to push VMTools 11.x and we have not seen any further instances of the problem. I believe there must be a bug in the 10.x tools that are default with ESXi 6.7

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