Virtualization does bring some new monitoring and change management challenges in the area of networking. From a basic standpoint, most network monitoring tools will be able to automatically discover virtual machines that are connected to production network segments. They won’t notice VMs that are disconnected from the network, VMs that are located on isolated VLANs, and VMs that are powered off. You’ll need virtualization-aware tools to monitor those systems.
So, on to the question of managing virtual switches themselves: Because these virtual “devices” are specific to each vendor, you will need virtualization-aware tools to view their configuration settings. For example, VMware’s Virtual Center and Microsoft’s System Center Virtual Machine Manager can both show configuration settings. Both platforms also allow you to create scripts using tools such as Windows Powershell, WMI, and other methods to collect configuration data and to make changes. The simplest way, of course, is to invest in tools that can do this automatically. I hope this is helpful!