Manual Chapter : Deploying BIG-IP Virtual Edition

Applies To:

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BIG-IP Edge Gateway

  • 11.2.1


  • 11.2.1


  • 11.2.1

BIG-IP WebAccelerator

  • 11.2.1


  • 11.2.1


  • 11.2.1


  • 11.2.1
Manual Chapter

Deployment of BIG-IP VE on XenServer

To deploy the BIG-IP VE system on a Citrix® XenServer®, you need to perform these tasks:
  • Verify the host machine requirements.
  • Deploy an instance of the BIG-IP system as a virtual machine on a host system.
  • Power on the BIG-IP VE virtual machine.
  • Assign a management IP address to the BIG-IP VE virtual machine.

After you complete these tasks, you can log in to the BIG-IP VE system and run the Setup utility. Using the Setup utility, you can perform basic network configuration tasks, such as assigning VLANs to interfaces.

Host machine requirements and recommendations

There are specific requirements for the host system to run successfully on the BIG-IP VE system.

To successfully deploy and run the BIG-IP VE system, the host system must contain the following elements:

  • XenServer 5.6, 5.6 FP1, or 5.6 SP2
  • XenCenter
  • Connection to a common NTP source (this is especially important for each host in a redundant system configuration)
  • Active DHCP server on the same network as the XenServer host
Important: The hypervisor CPU must meet the following requirements:
  • use 64 bit architecture
  • support for virtualization (AMD-V or Intel VT-x) must be enabled
  • support a one-to-one thread-to-defined virtual CPU ratio, or (on single-threading architectures) support at least one core per defined virtual CPU
  • Intel processors must be from the Core (or newer) workstation or server family of CPUs

Deploying the BIG-IP VE virtual machine

The first steps in deploying BIG-IP Virtual Edition (VE) are to download and extract the Zip file to your local system. Next, you can run the Deploy OVF Template wizard from within the XenServer XenCenter client. Note that the Zip file contains a virtual disk image based on an Open Virtual Format (OVF) template. Follow the steps in this procedure to create an instance of the BIG-IP system that runs as a virtual machine on the host system.

Important: Do not modify the configuration of the XenServer guest environment with settings less powerful than the ones recommended in this document. This includes the settings for the CPU, RAM, and network adapters. Doing so might produce unexpected results.
  1. In a browser, open the F5 Downloads page (
  2. Download the BIG-IP VE file package ending with
  3. Extract the files from the Zip archive.
  4. Before starting the import wizard, review the prospective hypervisor environment for the following.
    • Make sure a DHCP server is active on the same network as the XenServer host before you start the XenCenter OVF Appliance.
    • Make sure there are no firewall or other restrictions between the required ports for connectivity between the XenCenter Client and XenServer. For more information and networking requirements, refer to the XenServer Virtual Machine Installation Guide.
    • Make sure enough storage space is available on the XenServer for the BIG-IP virtual machine.
  5. Start the XenServer XenCenter client and log in.
  6. From the XenCenter 5.6 File menu, choose Appliance Import. If you are using XenCenter 5.6 FP1 or 5.6 SP2, click Tools > Virtual Appliance Tools > Import Appliance. The Appliance Import wizard starts.
  7. In the Select Appliance pane, click the Browse button. Locate the OVA file. For example: \MyDocuments\Work\Virtualization\<BIG-IP_OVA_filename>
  8. Click Next. This displays the End-User License Agreement (EULA).
  9. Read and accept the license agreement, and click Next. The Home Server pane opens.
  10. In the Home Server pane, select the home server for the BIG-IP VE virtual machine from the list. Click Next.
  11. In the Storage pane, pick the 100 GB storage size and location for the BIG-IP VE virtual machine. Click Next.
  12. In the Network pane, assign the Management, Internal, and External virtual machines to their respective Target Virtual Networks and click Next.
    Tip: There is no need to enter MAC addresses, MAC addresses will be assigned automatically.
  13. In the Security pane, make sure the Verify Digital Signature check box is not selected. Click Next.
  14. Map the source network HA to the name of a high-availability network in your inventory. An example of a destination high-availability network is HA.
  15. In the Advanced Options pane, make sure the Run Operating System Fixups check box is not selected and click Next.
    Important: The Run Operating System Fixups check box is selected by default.
  16. In the Finish pane, scroll down to the highlighted rows and review your settings before continuing. Click Next.
  17. The progress bar and text in the Progress pane will indicate when the BIG-IP virtual machine creation is complete.

Powering on the BIG-IP VE virtual machine

You must power on the BIG-IP VE virtual machine before you can move on to assigning IP addresses.
  1. In the XenCenter client window, select the Server View.
  2. Select the virtual machine that you want to power on.
  3. Click the Start icon.
    Note: If you do not see the Start icon, check the tool bar under the View menu.
    The BIG-IP VE status icon changes to indicate that the virtual machine is on. The BIG-IP VE virtual machine will boot and become ready for configuration.

Assigning a management IP address to a BIG-IP VE virtual machine

The BIG-IP VE virtual machine needs an IP address assigned to its virtual management port.
  1. In the XenCenter client window, select the Server View.
  2. In the resources pane, select the virtual machine to which you want to assign the management IP address.
  3. Click the Console tab.
  4. After a few seconds, a login prompt appears. You might need to click the console area and press Enter to activate the console.
  5. At the local host login prompt, type root.
  6. At the password prompt, type default.
  7. Type config and press Enter. The F5 Management Port Setup screen appears.
  8. Click OK.
  9. If you want DHCP to automatically assign an address for the management port, select Yes. Otherwise, select No and follow the instructions for manually assigning an IP address and netmask for the management port.
Tip: F5 Networks highly recommends that you specify a default route for the virtual management port, but it is not required for operation of the BIG-IP VE virtual machine.