NSX Data Center for vSphere is VMware’s network virtualization platform for the Software-Defined Data Center (SDDC), delivering networking and security features entirely in software, abstracted from the underlying physical infrastructure.
In VMware’s vision of Software Defined Data Center, VMware NSX plays the role of virtualizing the networking components. Thus enabling creating multi-tier and complex networking programmatically in seconds.
NSX Manager: It is the centralized management plane. Upon deployment of NSX Manager, it installs some VIBs (VXLAN, Distributed Routing, Distributed Firewall and user world agent) on the host when host preparation is initiated.
NSX vSwitch: is the software that operates in server hypervisors to form a software abstraction layer between servers and the physical network.
NSX Controller: It is a VM deployed by NSX Manager which acts as the Control Plane. NSX controller is the central control point for all logical switches within a network and maintains information of all virtual machines, hosts, logical switches, and VXLANs. The controller supports two new logical switch control plane modes, Unicast and Hybrid
NSX Edge: NSX Edge provides network edge security and gateway services to isolate a virtualized network. You can install an NSX Edge either as a logical (distributed) router or as a services gateway. The NSX Edge gateway connects isolated, stub networks to shared (uplink) networks by providing common gateway services such as DHCP, VPN, NAT, dynamic routing, and Load Balancing. Common deployments of NSX Edge include in the DMZ, VPN Extranets, and multi-tenant Cloud environments where the NSX Edge creates virtual boundaries for each tenant.
Distributed Firewall: NSX Distributed Firewall is a hypervisor kernel-embedded firewall that provides visibility and control for virtualized workloads and networks. You can create access control policies based on VMware vCenter objects like datacenters and clusters, virtual machine names and tags, network constructs such as IP/VLAN/VXLAN addresses, as well as user group identity from Active Directory.