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How to Add Hardware Load Balancers in VMM

Updated: November 1, 2013

Applies To: System Center 2012 - Virtual Machine Manager, System Center 2012 R2 Virtual Machine Manager, System Center 2012 SP1 - Virtual Machine Manager

You can use the following procedure to discover and add hardware load balancers to Virtual Machine Manager (VMM). By adding load balancers to VMM management and by creating associated virtual IP templates (VIP templates), users who create services can automatically provision load balancers when they create and deploy a service.

ImportantImportant
If you want to use Microsoft Network Load Balancing (NLB), you do not have to complete this procedure. When you install VMM, NLB is automatically included as a load balancer. To use NLB, you must create NLB virtual IP templates. For more information, see How to Create VIP Templates for Network Load Balancing (NLB) in VMM.

Account requirements   To complete this procedure, you must be a member of the Administrator user role or a Delegated Administrator where the administrative scope includes the host groups to which you want to make the load balancer available.

Prerequisites

Before you begin this procedure, make sure that the following prerequisites are met:

  • You must have a supported hardware load balancer. VMM supports the following hardware load balancers:

    • BIG-IP from F5 Networks, Inc.

    • Brocade ServerIron ADX from Brocade Communications Systems, Inc.

    • Citrix NetScaler from Citrix Systems, Inc.

  • You must obtain the load balancer provider from the load balancer vendor, and install the provider on the VMM management server. You can use the following links to obtain the load balancer provider from your vendor’s website:

    noteNote
    In the following list, all information and content at the listed Web addresses is provided by the owner or the users of each website. Microsoft makes no warranties, express, implied or statutory, as to the information at this website.

    ImportantImportant
    After you install the load balancer provider, you must restart the System Center Virtual Machine Manager service. To restart the service, from an elevated command prompt, type the command net stop scvmmservice, press ENTER, type net start scvmmservice, and then press ENTER.

    Also, if you uninstall a VMM management server and then reinstall it, you must also uninstall and then reinstall the load balancer provider.

  • Although it is not a required prerequisite, you can create a Run As account before you begin this procedure. (You can also create the account during the procedure.) The associated credentials must have permissions to configure the load balancers that you want to add.

    For example, create a Run As account that is named Load Balancers.

    noteNote
    You can create a Run As account in the Settings workspace. For more information about Run As accounts, see How to Create a Run As Account in VMM.

To add a hardware load balancer

  1. Open the Fabric workspace.

  2. In the Fabric pane, expand Networking, and then click Load Balancers.

  3. On the Home tab, in the Show group, click Fabric Resources.

  4. On the Home tab, in the Add group, click Add Resources, and then click Load Balancer.

    The Add Load Balancer Wizard opens.

  5. On the Credentials page, next to the Run As account box, click Browse, and then click a Run As account that has permissions on the load balancer. When you are finished, click OK, and then click Next.

    For example, if you created the Run As account that is described in the Prerequisites section, select the Load Balancers Run As account.

    noteNote
    If you do not already have a Run As account, click Browse, and then in the Select a Run As Account dialog box, click Create Run As Account.

  6. On the Host Group page, select the check box next to each host group where the load balancer will be available. By default, any child host groups are also selected.

    For example, under Seattle, select the check box next to the Seattle host group, and then click Next.

  7. On the Manufacturer and Model page, specify the load balancer manufacturer and model, and then click Next.

  8. On the Address page, do the following, and then click Next:

    1. Specify the IP address, fully qualified domain name (FQDN), or the NetBIOS names of the load balancers that are of the same manufacturer and model that you specified in the previous step. Separate each load balancer by using a comma or by adding the load balancer on a new line.

    2. In the Port number box, enter the port number that you use to connect to for management of the load balancers.

    For example, enter the FQDN LoadBalancer01.contoso.com, and the port number that is used to communicate with the load balancer, such as port 443.

  9. On the Logical Network Affinity page, specify the load balancer affinity to logical networks, and then click Next.

    Setting the load balancer affinity enables you to provide some control over which load balancer will be used for a service. This is based on logical network information. VMM uses this information to determine the valid static IP address pools that are accessible from both the load balancer and the host group that the service tier will be deployed to. Note the following:

    • When you configure front-end affinity, select the logical networks from which the load balancer can obtain its virtual IP (VIP) address. The VIP address is the IP address that is assigned to a load balancer during the deployment of a load-balanced service tier. Clients can connect to the VIP address through a registered DNS name to access the service.

      During the deployment of a load-balanced service tier, VMM looks for static IP address pools with available VIP addresses on the logical network that you select for the “Client connection” object when you configure a load balancer in a service template.

      For the load balancer to be selected during placement, when you configure the load balancer “Client connection” object, the logical network that you select must be in the list of logical networks that are selected for front-end affinity.

      ImportantImportant
      For front-end affinity, make sure that you select one or more logical networks where the associated network site with a reserved VIP address range is available to a host group or parent host group that is also available to the hardware load balancer.

    • When you configure back-end affinity, select the logical networks to which you want to make the load balancer available for connections from the virtual machines that make up a service tier.

      For the load balancer to be selected during placement, when you configure the load balancer “Server connection” object in a service template, the logical network that the NIC object is connected to must be in the list of logical networks that are selected for back-end affinity.

  10. On the Provider page, do the following, and then click Next:

    1. In the Provider list, click an available provider to use for load balancer configuration.

    2. In the Load balancer for configuration test list, click an available load balancer, click Test, and view the test results.

  11. On the Summary page, confirm the settings, and then click Finish.

    The Jobs dialog box appears. Make sure that the job has a status of Completed, and then close the dialog box.

  12. Verify that the load balancer appears in the Load Balancers pane. The Provider Status column indicates whether the provider is active.

See Also

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For additional resources, see Information and Support for System Center 2012.

Tip: Use this query to find online documentation in the TechNet Library for System Center 2012. For instructions and examples, see Search the System Center 2012 Documentation Library.
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