VMware Lab Manager : How to build a fence

I am sure all of us at one time or another has come across a problem or configuration you just can’t figure out. I have too and usually a quick Google search will yield some fine soul out in internet world who had the same problem and found a solution for it.

Of course there are those times when you try to find a solution and your first search results in nothing. No fear however you will just try again and this time change the words up a bit… still nothing.

So now your palms start to sweat and you think maybe it’s not out there. You search high and low and no matter what you do you can’t find anything. You begin to wonder if you are the only one out there with this problem! Or maybe this problem is so easy, this software so intuitive that everyone else figured it out. And now you are thinking that if I hadn’t had that last beer bong in college I would have those 3 extra brain cells in my head which I must need. After sometime you even begin to think. I may have to call support…

NO!!!! That can’t be, I am not going to subject myself to a support call!

Well, this was my journey with VMware Lab Manager 4.0 fencing. I looked at the documentation, searched, and could not find a solution to my problem. I even subjected myself to a support call which resulted in “I am going to have to do some testing in my lab and get back to you.” Well for all those people out there who may have the same problem. Or who, like me, drank way to much beer in college and burned off too many brain cells here is the solution.

VMware Lab Manager offers a way to fence off a server configuration so you can clone many of the same configurations into the environment without having to re-IP or reset MAC addresses.


My configuration is as follows:

Fourteen Microsoft Windows 2008 -2003 servers consisting of domain controllers, web servers, SQL servers and applications servers. This configuration matches my Production environment. The IP’s are statically assigned to subnet 10.237.X.X. This subnet is neither routable nor available on my internal physical network. The configuration has been captured into the library and I have link-cloned three separate environments that must be accessible to three separate teams of people on our internal physical network. Obviously, I don’t want to log into each and every server, change the IP address, DNS entries and such for each environment.



Let’s go over what I had to do to get my environment up and running.

Step One – Build a new physical network

This should be very straight forward except one caveat: you must select “Static – IP Pool” and ”Static – Manual”












Define your Static IP pool addresses – these will be the addresses that are configured and available on your internal physical network.





Step Two – Configure the servers so they can see the network.

Select your configuration, and then select the Network tab.






Select “Add Network” and add the newly created physical network











Now that this is done you can go to each of your servers within your configuration and set the network settings.










Once this is completed on each server your configuration should look something like this



Step Three – Time to deploy

During the deploy everything is auto created and there is no need for further configuration. You can now access your servers via the NAT address assigned by Lab Manager.









That’s it!

I hope this helps someone out there!


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5 Comments Leave a comment

  1. Awesome writeup Leon! I never got into the LM thing, but your post gave me some ideas. Did you already try isolation w/ allowed outbound traffic (E.g. To phys. Resources that can’t be fenced)?

    Good to see you on nickapedia!

  2. I’m looking to do something very similar but with LM already end of life I don’t know what my options are. Is there a way to replicate the fencing functionality with a standard vDS? Could vCD be the answer?

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