Virtual Switch 101

One of my readers sent me this question:

I am a CCNP-certified L3/L4 network engineer working purely on Cisco products and network technologies for the last 10 years of experience. How long will it take for a typical person like me to get a foothold into VM/SAN?

It obviously depends on how deep you want to go, but the virtual networking part of it shouldn’t be too hard.

After all, the virtual machines running in hypervisors (or applications running in Docker containers) expect to see the same TCP/IP stack and Ethernet interfaces they used while they were still residing on dedicated silicon, and the networking technology fundamentals haven’t changed in the 30 years, so it’s no surprise you’ll find a VLAN-capable layer-2 switch in most hypervisors.

For more details, watch the Virtual Switch 101 video from my Introduction to Virtual Networking webinar (which, BTW, is a great place to start if you want to migrate from pure physical networking to virtual- or overlay networking)


  1. One parameter you left out -
    How long will it take you to get someone to let you get that foothold.

    I am just like you and the folks who manage the VM/SAN environments I work next to have absolutely no interest in opening their space to an outsider.
    Good luck and please let us know how it goes.
    I suspect I will have to leave my company to gain any lateral experience, sadly.
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