In VMware Cloud on AWS, content libraries support both OVF and VM templates. You can choose to save and manage a virtual machine or a VM template from the vCenter Server inventory as a content library item of either the OVF format or the VM template type.

VM Template or OVF Template: Template Properties

See the table below for a detailed list of the differences between the VM template and the OVF template types.

Table 1. VM Templates and OVF Templates Properties

Property

VM Templates in Content Library

OVF Templates in Content Library

Datastore

VM templates are stored on the datastore that is defined in the configuration specifications of the source virtual machines.

OVF templates are stored on the datastore that is associated with the content library.

Footprint

Configurable.

Compressed or Thin.

Host/Datastore Maintenance Mode

When the host becomes inaccessible, VM templates are automatically migrated to another host.

When the datastore becomes inaccessible, you must convert the VM template to a virtual machine and manually migrate the virtual machine to another datastore.

When either the host or the datastore becomes inaccessible, you must manually migrate the OVF templates to another host or datastore.

Associated with a Host

Yes.

No.

SDRS

Supported.

Not supported.

Cross-vendor Compatibility

Not supported.

Supported.

Software License Agreement

Not supported.

Supported.

Note:

You can convert a VM template into an OVF template. However, the snapshots and some extra configuration settings of the source virtual machine are lost. The virtual machine disks are consolidated and the virtual disks hierarchy is lost.

VM Template or OVF Template: Deployment Options

You can use both VM templates and OVF templates to deploy new virtual machines. However, there are differences between the two types of templates in regards to the available deployment options.

Table 2. Deployment Options with VM Templates and OVF Templates

Deployment Option

VM Templates in Content Library

OVF Templates in Content Library

Guest OS Customization

Supported. Encryption is also supported.

Supported, but except for encryption.

Hardware Customization

Supported.

Not supported.

VM Templates in Content Library vs. VM Templates in the vCenter Server Inventory

When you create a VM template library item, this item is backed by an identical VM template in the vCenter Server inventory. The content library item and the corresponding inventory object are related in the following way.

  • If you convert the VM template in the vCenter Server inventory to a virtual machine, the corresponding VM template library item is also deleted.

  • If you delete the VM template in the vCenter Server inventory, the corresponding VM template library item is also deleted.

  • If you delete the VM template library item, the associated VM template in the vCenter Server inventory is also deleted.