Creating and Managing TKG 2.1 Workload Clusters with the Tanzu CLI

This publication explains how to use the Tanzu CLI to create and manage Kubernetes clusters created by standalone Tanzu Kubernetes Grid (TKG) 2.1 management clusters on vSphere without a Supervisor, AWS, or Azure or by a Supervisor in vSphere 8. If you have a vSphere with Tanzu subscription on vSphere 8, the Supervisor works as a Tanzu Kubernetes Grid management cluster. If you do not have a Supervisor or if you are deploying clusters in a multi-cloud environment, standalone management clusters allow you to deploy workload clusters on vSphere, AWS, and Azure.

By connecting the Tanzu CLI to a standalone management cluster or the Supervisor, you can use the Tanzu CLI and other interfaces to run high-level management operations that configure, create, extend, monitor, and otherwise manage workload clusters, to serve as a distributed and enterprise-ready infrastructure for hosting containerized apps.


Tanzu Kubernetes Grid 2.x refers to how the latest versions of the Tanzu CLI (shipped with TKG v1.6.x and v2.1) work with the Supervisor in vSphere 8 or with TKG 2.1 management clusters, and the new capabilities of this client/server pair. Specifically, TKG 2.x uses improved Cluster object definitions backed by a new ClusterClass object type defined in version v1.x (v1beta1) of the Cluster API open-source toolset for Kubernetes cluster management. These redesigned cluster objects are simpler, more modular, and more cross-compatible than the corresponding objects in previous versions of Cluster API used by TKG 1.x.

Get Started with TKG and the Tanzu CLI

If you are using the vSphere with Tanzu Supervisor in vSphere 8, the first step in creating and managing TKG clusters with the Tanzu CLI is to Install the Tanzu CLI and Other Tools for Use with a vSphere with Tanzu Supervisor.

If you already installed the Tanzu CLI and used it to deploy standalone management clusters on vSphere without Supervisor or on AWS or Azure, you can start to Creating Workload Clusters directly.

Other TKG Documentation

This publication covers using the Tanzu CLI with standalone TKG 2.1 management clusters or with a Supervisor on vSphere 8 to create workload clusters, but TKG has deployment options on other infrastructures, which are documented in other publications.

What do you want to do? Documentation
Compare TKG deployment options with a Supervisor on vSphere 8 or with a standalone management cluster on vSphere, AWS, or Azure About Tanzu Kubernetes Grid
Deploy a standalone management cluster with TKG v2.1, on vSphere without a Supervisor, AWS, or Azure Deploying and Managing TKG 2.1 Standalone Management Clusters
Deploy a Supervisor cluster vSphere with Tanzu Installation and Configuration Workflow in Installing and Configuring vSphere with Tanzu
Learn the Tanzu CLI commands VMware Tanzu CLI Reference
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