By default, Auto Deploy provisions hosts only if a partition is available on the host. You can set up a reference host to auto-partition all hosts that you provision with Auto Deploy.

About this task


If you change the default auto-partitioning behavior, Auto Deploy overwrites existing partitions regardless of their content. If you turn on this option, ensure that no unintended data loss results.

To ensure that local SSDs remain unpartitioned during auto-partitioning, you must set the parameter skipPartitioningSsds=TRUE on the reference host.

For more information about preventing SSD formatting during auto-partitioning, see the vSphere Storage documentation.


  • Provision the host you wish to use as your reference host with an ESXi image by using Auto Deploy.

  • Verify that you have access to avSphere Web Client that can connect to the vCenter Server system.


  1. In the vSphere Web Client, select the host you want to use as a reference host and click Manage.
  2. Click Settings.
  3. Click System to open the system options and click Advanced System Settings.
  4. Scroll to VMkernel.Boot.autoPartition and set the value to true.
  5. (Optional) If you want local SSDs to remain unpartitioned, scroll to VMkernel.Boot.skipPartitioningSsds and set the value to true.
  6. If no host profile exists for your reference host, create it now.
  7. Use the Auto Deploy PowerCLI to write a rule that applies the host profile of your reference host to all hosts immediately when they boot.


Auto-partitioning is performed when the hosts boot.