Finder DistributedVirtualSwitch

Extends com.vmware.vmo.plugin.vi4.model.VimManagedEntity
A DistributedVirtualSwitch managed object is a virtual network switch that is located on a vCenter Server. A distributed virtual switch manages configuration for proxy switches (HostProxySwitch). A proxy switch is located on an ESXi host that is managed by the vCenter Server and is a member of the switch. A distributed switch also provides virtual port state management so that port state is maintained when vCenter Server operations move a virtual machine from one host to another.

A proxy switch performs network I/O to support the following network traffic and operations:

  • Network traffic between virtual machines on any hosts that are members of the distributed virtual switch.
  • Network traffic between virtual machines that uses a distributed switch and a virtual machine that uses a VMware standard switch.
  • Network traffic between a virtual machine and a remote system on a physical network connected to the ESXi host.
  • vSphere system operations to support capabilities such as VMotion or High Availability.

A DistributedVirtualSwitch is the base distributed switch implementation. It supports a VMware distributed virtual switch implementation and it supports third party distributed switch implementations. The base implementation provides the following capabilities (DVSFeatureCapability):

  • NIC teaming
  • Network I/O control
  • Network resource allocation
  • Quality of service tag support
  • User-defined resource pools
  • I/O passthrough (VMDirectPath Gen2)

A VmwareDistributedVirtualSwitch supports the following additional capabilities (DVSFeatureCapability and VMwareDVSFeatureCapability):

  • Backup, restore, and rollback for a VMware distributed virtual switch and its associated portgroups.
  • Maximum Transmission Unit (MTU) configuration.
  • Health check operations for NIC teaming and VLAN/MTU support.
  • Monitoring switch traffic using Internet Protocol Flow Information Export (IPFIX).
  • Link Layer Discovery Protocol (LLDP).
  • Virtual network segmentation using a Private VLAN (PVLAN).
  • VLAN-based SPAN (VSPAN) for virtual distributed port mirroring.
  • Link Aggregation Control Protocol (LACP) defined for uplink portgroups.

Distributed Virtual Switch Configuration

To use a distributed virtual switch, you create a switch and portgroups on a vCenter Server, and add hosts as members of the switch.

  1. Create a distributed virtual switch (Folder.CreateDVS_Task). Use a DVSConfigSpec to create a switch for a third-party implementation. Use a VMwareDVSConfigSpec to create a VMware distributed virtual switch.

  2. Create portgroups (CreateDVPortgroup_Task) for host and virtual machine network connections and for the connection between proxy switches and physical NICs. A DistributedVirtualPortgroup specifies how virtual ports (DistributedVirtualPort) will be used. When you create a distributed virtual switch, the vCenter Server automatically creates one uplink portgroup (config.uplinkPortgroup). Uplink portgroups are distributed virtual portgroups that support the connection between proxy switches and physical NICs.

    Port creation on a distributed switch is determined by the portgroup type (DVPortgroupConfigSpec.type):

    You can also specify standalone ports that are not associated with a port group and uplink ports that are created on ESXi hosts (DVSConfigSpec.numStandalonePorts).

    The DVPortgroupConfigInfo.numPorts property is the total number of ports for a distributed virtual switch. This total includes the ports generated by the static and dynamic portgroups and the standalone ports.

  3. If you have created additional uplink portgroups, use the ReconfigureDvs_Task method to add the portgroup(s) to the DVSConfigSpec.uplinkPortgroup array.

  4. Retrieve physical NIC device names from the host ([].device).

  5. Add host member(s) to the distributed virtual switch. To configure host members:

    When you add a host to a distributed virtual switch (, the host automatically creates a proxy switch. The proxy switch is removed automatically when the host is removed from the distributed virtual switch.

  6. Connect hosts and virtual machines to the distributed virtual switch.

    Host connection Specify port or portgroup connections in the host virtual NIC spec (HostVirtualNicSpec.distributedVirtualPort or HostVirtualNicSpec.portgroup).
    Virtual machine connection Specify port or portgroup connections in the distributed virtual port backing (VirtualEthernetCardDistributedVirtualPortBackingInfo) for the virtual Ethernet cards on the virtual machine (VirtualEthernetCard.backing).

Backup, Rollback, and Query Operations

If you are using a VmwareDistributedVirtualSwitch, you can perform backup and rollback operations on the switch and its associated distributed virtual portgroups.

When you reconfigure a VMware distributed virtual switch (ReconfigureDvs_Task), the Server saves the current switch configuration before applying the configuration updates. The saved switch configuration includes portgroup configuration data. The Server uses the saved switch configuration as a checkpoint for rollback operations. You can rollback the switch or portgroup configuration to the saved configuration, or you can rollback to a backup configuration (EntityBackupConfig).

To perform query operations on a distributed virtual switch, use the DistributedVirtualSwitchManager methods.

Returns results of type: VcDistributedVirtualSwitch


Name Description


Name Type
getPortgroup() DistributedVirtualPortgroup
getRecentTask() Task

Returned by

Method Returns
NetworkFolder.getDistributedVirtualSwitch_DistributedVirtualSwitch() DistributedVirtualSwitch

Referenced in