Home Enterprise VMware NSX-T 3.2 Adds Innovations to Multi-Cloud Security, Networking, and Operations

VMware NSX-T 3.2 Adds Innovations to Multi-Cloud Security, Networking, and Operations

by Harold Fritts

VMware NSX-T 3.2 has been released, adding innovations across multi-cloud security, scale-out networking for containers, VMs, and physical workloads. Embedded in his release is tapless network traffic analysis (NTA), enhancements to gateway firewall, and integrated Network Detection and Response. NSX-T 3.2 is packed with improvements and features and is one of the largest releases for NSX.

VMware NSX-T 3.2 has been released, adding innovations across multi-cloud security, scale-out networking for containers, VMs, and physical workloads. Embedded in his release is tapless network traffic analysis (NTA), enhancements to gateway firewall, and integrated Network Detection and Response. NSX-T 3.2 is packed with improvements and features and is one of the largest releases for NSX.

Update 12/28/21 – We have a detailed piece on NSX 3.2 advanced security updates

VMware NSX-T 3.2 Highlights

Here are the release’s highlights—more detail on Security, Networking, and Operations to follow in separate posts.

Strong Multi-Cloud Security
VMware NSX-T 3.2 provides multi-cloud network defenses to secure application traffic within and across clouds. NSX-T 3.2 takes this to another level by making it easy to enable Zero Trust application access across multi-cloud environments.

Tapless Network Traffic Analysis (NTA)
Network traffic analysis (NTA) and sandboxing solutions are integrated directly into the NSX Distributed Firewall (DFW). Distributing NTA as a service within the hypervisor eliminates traffic hairpins.  When combined with distributed IDS/IPS capabilities, security teams can virtualize the entire security stack and eliminate blind spots while allowing security policies and controls to follow workflows throughout their lifecycle, regardless of the underlying infrastructure.

VMware NSX-T 3.2 firewall

Gateway Firewall
The enhanced gateway firewall serves as a software-based gateway with L2-L7 controls. URL filtering and advanced threat prevention with malware analysis and sandboxing are included and extend centralized security controls to physical workloads, the data center perimeter, and the public cloud edge.

VMware NSX-T 3.2 gateway firewall topology

Integrated NDR with NSX Intelligence
NSX Network Detection and Response (NDR) solution has been integrated into NSX Intelligence. This feature allows NDR to correlate signals from IDS/IPS, NTA, and the sandbox to identify true intrusions. NSX Intelligence now offers scale-out performance and improvements to firewall rule recommendations.

Switch-Agnostic Distributed Security
The NSX Distributed Firewall now supports workloads deployed on Distributed Port Groups on VDS switches, allowing customers to deploy the NSX firewall without changing the vSphere Distributed Switch.

Networking and Policy Enhancements
Whether public or private, scaling up and managing  a  cloud environment requires simplified network configuration and management, visibility and control, and the ability to add new capabilities into an existing environment rapidly. VMware NSX-T 3.2 adds enhancements for network administrators to add policies for containers easily.

With NSX-T 3.2, network administrators can directly define Antrea networking and security policies for containers from the NSX-T Manager user interface. Antrea is a purpose-built Kubernetes networking solution for public and private clouds building upon Open vSwitch, the open-source technology optimized for distributed multi-layer switching. Antrea will run anywhere Kubernetes runs, whether on-premises, in the public cloud, or at the edge.

NSX Federation
NSX  Federation helps deliver a public cloud-like operating model, allowing an operator to manage a multi-site network as a single entity while synchronizing configuration and operational state across multiple locations. With VMware NSX-T 3.2, NSX Federation supports VM tag replication between local managers, so VMs replicated and restarted during a Disaster Recovery (DR) event retain the necessary security policies. NSX-T 3.2 also implements enhanced health monitoring for communication channels between global and local managers.

Streamlined Network Provisioning and Operations
The new release simplifies deployment in vSphere environments allowing admins to deploy NSX-T networking and security use cases directly from vSphere clients.

Simplified provisioning for NSX Advanced Load Balancer
NSX Advanced Load Balancer (ALB) installation is further simplified through tighter integration with NSX Manager. You can use the NSX Manager UI to install and configure ALB controllers and cross-launch the VMware NSX ALB UI for advanced features.

vRealize Network Insight Support for NSX-T Federation and Firewall
Tight integration of vRealize Network Insight 6.4 and NSX-T Federation delivers comprehensive network visibility across multiple NSX-T data centers at the global, regional, and local site levels. New  capabilities include optimizing application performance, and traffic flows with simplified views for inter-site VM-to-VM paths and  intra-site VM-to-VM paths in a Federation topology.

Network monitoring and troubleshooting enhancements
Network operators will find it easier to monitor key performance indicators, perform before and after analysis, and access historical context with the new Edge and L3 time-sensitive feature.  Live Traffic Analysis also provides unified troubleshooting and diagnosis across data centers combining Traceflow and packet captures.

Summary

The VMware NSX-T 3.2 release is packed with enhancements and features expanding on the breadth and depth of NSX-T use cases across multi-cloud security, scale-out networking for containers, VMs, bare-metal workloads, and simplified operations.  The release will be generally available shortly, along with detailed Release Notes covering all the features and capabilities delivered.

Update 12/28/21 – We have a detailed piece on NSX 3.2 advanced security updates

VMware NSX-T Documentation Hub

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