Working with VLANs in Linux

I was recently working with a Dell PowerEdge M610 blade server that had a processor problem. During troubleshooting steps, Dell requested a DSET report from my ESXi host. I knew this wouldn’t be a problem as I could use the live boot CD (described here).

After I booted the live CD I was able to run the requested DSET report. However, once I had the report I needed network connectivity to get it out of the live CD environment. The problem is that my network adapters only have 802.1Q VLAN tagged interfaces. To access the network I needed to specify the VLAN ID. This is a very common configuration for ESX/ESXi hosts, but I wasn’t sure how to make it work in the live CD Linux. This wouldn’t be a very complicated configuration for a Linux guy, but as a Windows admin it took me a few minutes to figure out. After some googling, I came up with the following:

vconfig add eth0 55
ifconfig eth0.55 netmask broadcast up
route add default gw eth0.55

(Assuming that my interface is eth0, the VLAN ID is 55, the subnet is, I wish to assign the address and the default gateway is

This entry was posted in Virtualization. Bookmark the permalink.

2 Responses to Working with VLANs in Linux

  1. Nice post. If you’re wanting to make permanently add a 802.1q interface on a Linux server (that will persist after reboot), you can create a file in /etc/sysconfig/network-scripts (at least in Red Hat based distros). For instance to create a permanent 802.1q interface for VLAN 55 on eth0, the file would be named ifcfg-eth0.55

    You can just copy the normal interface file and change the addresses specified as needed. Then, instance of DEVICE=eth0, you would just put DEVICE=eth0.55

  2. Avi Wollman says:

    Thank you, this was EXACTLY what I needed. May God bless you.

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *


Notify me of followup comments via e-mail. You can also subscribe without commenting.