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How to Add and Configure Network Adapters for a Virtual Machine

You can configure one or more virtual network adapters for a virtual machine by creating or modifying a Virtual Machine Manager hardware profile. Typically, you use a virtual network adapter to connect a virtual machine to one of the following types of virtual network:

  • Internal network. If you connect a virtual network adapter configured for a virtual machine to an internal network, only other virtual machines deployed on the same host are connected to and can communicate over that internal network.
  • External network. If you connect a virtual network adapter configured for a virtual machine to a physical network adapter on the host on which the virtual machine is deployed, the virtual machine can access the network to which the physical host computer is connected and can function on the host's local area network (LAN) in the same way that physical computers connected to the LAN can function. If the host computer can access the Internet, the virtual machine can access the Internet.

Before You Start

The following procedure assumes one of the following:

  • You are creating a new stand-alone hardware profile and are configuring the Hardware Settings tab.
  • You are configuring hardware profile settings on the Configure Hardware page of the New Template Wizard or the New Virtual Machine Wizard.
  • You are configuring the properties of an existing stand-alone hardware profile on its Hardware Settings tab or are configuring an existing template or virtual machine on the Hardware Configuration tab.
To add and configure a virtual network adapter for a virtual machine
  1. To add a virtual network adapter to the hardware profile, in the left pane, click Network Adapters, and then click Network Adapter on the top menu.

    Note
    By default, a virtual network adapter that you add is not connected to a virtual network. Optionally, you can configure virtual machines created from this hardware profile to use one or more virtual network adapters that connect the virtual machines to internal networks or to external networks once the virtual machines are deployed on a host.

  2. In the left pane, click the network adapter that you just added, and then, in the results pane, either accept the defaults (and modify them later) or configure the following options:

    1. Connected to. Under Virtual network, in the Connected to drop-down list box, choose one of the following options:
      Not connected (default). Select this option for a virtual machine that you do not want to connect to any network or that you want to configure later.
      Internal Network. Select this option for a virtual machine that you want to connect to an isolated internal network that enables communication only among virtual machines on the same host. Virtual machines attached to the internal virtual network cannot communicate with the host, with any other physical computers on the host's LAN, or with the Internet.
      External Network Adapter Name. Select this option to specify that a virtual machine created by using this hardware profile will be connected to a physical network adapter on its host. Virtual machines attached to a physical network adapter can communicate with any physical or virtual computer that the host can communicate with and with any resources available on the intranet and over the Internet that the host computer can access.
    2. Ethernet (MAC) address. Like the MAC address on physical computers, a virtual MAC address on virtual machines uniquely identifies each computer on the same subnet. Select one of the following options:
      Dynamic. Select this option if you want to enable a dynamic MAC address for a virtual machine.
      Static. Select this option if you want to specify a static MAC address for a virtual machine. Type a static MAC address in the field provided.
  3. To save the settings, do one of the following:

    Option 1: If this hardware profile is a new or existing stand-alone hardware profile, click Apply to save the settings.

    Option 2: If this hardware profile is on the Configure Hardware page in the New Virtual Machine Wizard or the New Template Wizard (and you have completed any other settings you want to configure on this hardware profile), click Next to save the settings and continue to the next page. Alternatively, to save your settings not only in this wizard but also as a stand-alone profile, click Save Profile, type a name in the Name field on the General tab (and, optionally, change any other settings); click Apply, click OK to return to the Configure Hardware page; click Next to continue to the next wizard page, and then complete the wizard as usual.

    Option 3: If this hardware profile is on the properties page of an existing virtual machine or template, click Apply to save the settings.

See Also

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