Deploy a VMware Cloud on AWS SDDC to host your workloads in the cloud.

To create an SDDC, pick an AWS region to host it, give the SDDC a name, and specify how many ESXi hosts you want the SDDC to contain. If you don't already have an AWS account, you can still create a starter configuration SDDC that contains a single ESXi host. These single-host SDDCs expire in 60 days and are not supported for production use.


  1. Log in to the VMware Cloud Console at
  2. Create the SDDC.
    To start from the Launchpad:
    From the Launchpad, click VMware Cloud on AWS in the Infrastructure column, then click Learn More and Get Started to open the Create Software-Defined Data Center (SDDC) page.
    To start from the Inventory view:
    From the Inventory page, click ADD DEPLOYMENT and select VMware Cloud on AWS from the drop-down menu.
  3. Choose a seller.
    See Purchase Options for VMware Cloud on AWS. You cannot change the seller after the SDDC is created.
  4. Configure SDDC Properties.
    1. Make up an SDDC Name.

      The name must be between 1 and 128 characters and cannot include the no-break space (0xC2) or soft hyphen (0xAD) characters. All other ISO-8859-15 printable characters are allowed.

      You can change this name later if you want to. See Rename an SDDC in the VMware Cloud on AWS Operations Guide.
    2. Choose a Cloud provider.
      Amazon Web Services (AWS) is the only cloud provider that we currently support for this workflow.
    3. Select an AWS Region in which to deploy the SDDC.
      See Choosing a Region for a list of available regions and the features they support.
    4. Select a Deployment type.
      Option Description
      Single Host Select this option to create Single Host Starter Configuration SDDC. Single Host Starter Configuration SDDCs expire after 60 days. For more information, see Deploying a Single Host SDDC Starter Configuration.

      Select this option to create an SDDC with two or more hosts.

      Stretched Cluster
      If you create a multiple-host SDDC, you also have the option to create a stretched cluster that spans two availability zones (AZs). This configuration provides data redundancy in the event that there is a problem with one of the AZs. See Stretched Clusters for VMware Cloud on AWS.
      Note: Stretched clusters are not supported with vSAN ESA (default for i4i hosts).
      Read the VMware Cloud Tech Zone Designlets VMware Cloud on AWS Management Cluster Planning and VMware Cloud on AWS: Stretched Clusters for an in-depth discussion of SDDC host and cluster configuration options.
    5. Select the Host Type.
      Beginning with SDDC version 1.24, you can create an SDDC that uses vSAN OSA, vSAN ESA, or external NFS storage. The host type you select in this step determines the storage type for Cluster-1, which supports SDDC management appliances. You cannot change the host type for this cluster without help from VMware support. If you add clusters to the SDDC, they can use other host types if you want. For more information,, see VMC on AWS Host Types. All hosts in a cluster must use the same storage type.
      Table 1. VMware Cloud on AWS Cluster Storage Options
      Host Type Cluster Storage Type
      M7i External
      i4i vSAN ESA, vSAN OSA
      i3en vSAN OSA
      i3 vSAN OSA
      vSAN ESA is enabled by default for clusters with i4i hosts. To use vSAN OSA, clear the check box. For more information about vSAN ESA, see vSAN Express Storage Architecture (vSAN ESA) on VMware Cloud on AWS.
    6. If you are creating a multiple host SDDC, specify the initial Number of Hosts you want in the first cluster.
      You can add or remove hosts or clusters later if you need to. An SDDC requires at least three hosts to be eligible for upsizing. See Upsize SDDC Management Appliances

      Storage capacity, performance, and redundancy are all affected by the number of hosts in the SDDC. See Storage Capacity and Data Redundancy for more information.

      Host Capacity and Total Capacity update to reflect the number of hosts you've specified.
  5. (Optional) Click Show Advanced Configuration to select the size of the SDDC appliances.

    By default, a new SDDC is created with medium-sized NSX Edge and vCenter appliances. Large-sized appliances are recommended for deployments with more than 30 hosts or 3000 VMs or in any other situation where management cluster resources might be oversubscribed. Large-sized appliances are also required if you want to Configure a Multi-Edge SDDC With Traffic Groups.

    To deploy the SDDC with large appliances, select Large from the SDDC Appliance Size drop-down control.


    Large-sized appliances are not supported for two-host SDDCs with stretched or conventional clusters. Large-sized appliances cannot be scaled down.

    If you create the SDDC with a medium appliance configuration and find that you need additional management cluster resources, you can change the SDDC Appliance Size to large. See Upsize SDDC Management Appliances.

  6. Click Next to connect to an AWS account.
    See AWS VPC Configuration and Availability Requirements and Account Linking and the VMware Cloud on AWS CloudFormation Template for important information about requirements for the AWS account and subnets.
    Option Description
    Skip for now If you don't have an AWS account or don't want to connect to one you have now, you can postpone this step for up to 14 days. This option is currently available for Single Host SDDCs only.
    Use an existing AWS account From the Choose an AWS account drop-down, select an AWS account to use an AWS account that was previously connected to another SDDC. If no accounts are listed in the drop-down, you must Connect to a new AWS account.
    Connect a new AWS account From the Choose an AWS account drop-down. select Connect to a new AWS account and follow the instructions on the page. The VMware Cloud Console shows the progress of the connection.
  7. Select a VPC and Subnet from the drop-down menu and click Next.
    If you plan to enable IPv6 connectivity to the SDDC, you'll need to link it to a dual-stack subnet in an AWS dual-stack VPC. To support stretched clusters in an IPv6-enabled SDDC, you'll need to select two subnets in the VPC, each in a different AZ. See Enabling and Using IPv6 in SDDC Networks for more about IPv6 support in VMware Cloud on AWS, and see the AWS blog Dual-stack IPv6 architectures for AWS and hybrid networks for more information about dual-stack VPCs.
  8. (Optional) Click NEXT to configure the Management Subnet in the SDDC.
    Enter an IPv4 address range for the management subnet as a CIDR block or leave the text box blank to use the default, which is You can't change these values after the SDDC has been created, so consider the following when you specify the Management Subnet address range:
    • Choose a range of IP addresses that does not overlap with the AWS subnet you are connecting to. If you plan to connect your SDDC to an on-premises data center, the IP address range of the subnet must be unique within your enterprise network infrastructure. It cannot overlap the IP address range of any of your on-premises networks. For a complete list of IPv4 addresses reserved by VMware Cloud on AWS, see Reserved Network Addresses in the VMware Cloud on AWS Networking and Security guide.
    • If you are deploying a single-host SDDC, the IP address range is reserved for the default compute network of the SDDC. If you specify a management network address range that overlaps that address, single-host SDDC creation fails. If you are deploying a multi-host SDDC, no compute gateway logical network is created during deployment, so you'll need to create one after the SDDC is deployed.
    • CIDR blocks of size 16, 20, or 23 are supported, and must be in one of the "private address space" blocks defined by RFC 1918 (,, or The primary factor in choosing a Management CIDR block size is the anticipated scalability requirements of the SDDC. The management CIDR block cannot be changed after the SDDC has been deployed, so a /23 block is appropriate only for SDDCs that will not require much growth in capacity.
      CIDR block size Maximum Number of hosts (Single AZ) Maximum Number of hosts (Multi AZ)
      /23 23 18
      /20 228 224
      /16 See VMware Configuration Maximums.
      Because VMware Cloud on AWS reserves the capacity to add hosts (and their IP addresses) to every SDDC to meet SLA requirements during maintenance operations or in case of host failure, the number of usable hosts is reduced from what's shown here by two per SDDC, plus one more per cluster. This means that, for example, an SDDC with two clusters and a /23 management CIDR has enough IP addresses to deploy up to 23 hosts. The remaining addresses are reserved to be used when needed by hosts deployed to meet SLA requirements. Several VMware Cloud on AWS features consume additional IP addresses in the management CIDR:
      • Multi-Edge SDDC with Traffic Groups
      • SDDC Groups
      • Multi-Cluster SDDC
      • VCDR recovery SDDC
      Because use of these features reduces SDDC host capacity, a management CIDR block size of /23 might be insufficient for some SDDC requirements.
  9. Acknowledge that you understand and take responsibility for the costs you incur when you deploy an SDDC, then click DEPLOY SDDC to create the SDDC.
    Charges begin when you click DEPLOY SDDC. You cannot pause or cancel the deployment process after it starts. You won't be able to use the SDDC until deployment is complete. Deployment typically takes about two hours.

What to do next

After your SDDC is created, do the following:

  • Connect to the SDDC and configure SDDC Networks

    Before you can migrate your workload VMs and manage them in VMware Cloud on AWS, you must connect your on-premises data center to your SDDC. You can use the public Internet, AWS Direct Connect, or both for this connection. You must also set up one or more Virtual Private Networks (VPNs) to secure network traffic to and from your SDDC, and configure SDDC networking and security features like firewall rules, DNS, and DHCP. The VMware Cloud on AWS Networking and Security guide has more information about how to do that.

  • For multi-host SDDCs, you must configure a logical segment for workload VM networking. Single host SDDCs have a default logical segment. A banner is displayed on the SDDC card after creation is complete to indicate whether you need to create a logical segment. See Create or Modify a Network Segment.
  • For single host SDDCs, a banner is displayed on the SDDC card to indicate that a default logical segment has been created for this SDDC. If this default segment causes a conflict, delete it and create a new segment. See Create or Modify a Network Segment.
  • (Optional) Activate add-on services such as VMware Aria Operations or VMware Aria Automation. See Working with Integrated Services and Working with Aria Servicesin the VMware Cloud on AWS Operations Guide.