vSphere allows you to configure a reference host by using the vSphere Web Client, by using vCLI, or by using host profiles.

To set up a reference host, you can use the approach that suits you best.

vSphere Web Client

The vSphere Web Client supports setup of networking, storage, security, and most other aspects of anESXi host. Set up your environment and create a host profile from the reference host for use by Auto Deploy.

vSphere Command-Line Interface

You can use vCLI commands for setup of many aspects of your host. vCLI is suitable for configuring many of the services in the vSphere environment. Commands include vicfg-ntp (set up an NTP server), esxcli system syslog (set up a syslog server), and esxcli network route (add routes and set up the default route). See Configure ESXi Dump Collector with ESXCLI.

Host Profiles Interface

Best practice is to set up a host with vSphere Web Client or vCLI and create a host profile from that host. You can instead use the Host Profiles interface in the vSphere Web Client and save that host profile. See Configure Host Profiles for an Auto Deploy Reference Host with the vSphere Web Client.