To customize hosts with shared attributes, you can create a host profile in a reference host. To customize individual hosts, you can set up some fields in the host profile to prompt the user for input for each host.

Host profiles allow you to prespecify information, for example, the storage setup or Syslog setup in a reference host to and apply the host profile to a set of target hosts that share the same settings. You can also use host profiles to specify that certain settings are host dependent. If you do so, the host comes up in maintenance mode when you provision it with Auto Deploy. Remediate the host or reset the host customization to be prompted for input. The system stores your input and uses it the next time the host boots.

Note:

The host customization is not stored in a location or format that administrators can access. Use the Host Profiles UI in the vSphere Web Client to modify customization.

When the host profile is set to prompt for user input, you must specify a value in the dialog that appears when you reset the host customization. An error results if you do not specify a value.

Table 1. Host Profile Options that Prompt for iSCSI User Input

Information to Request User Input For

Setting the Host Profile Option

When you apply a host profile on a system that includes a profile for iSCSI, you are prompted for several properties. For many of the properties, a system default is available. For some properties, you must specify a value or an error results.

IQN name

If the iSCSI setup uses an IQN name, you are prompted when you apply the host profile. You cannot continue until you provide the name.

CHAP information

If you set up iSCSI to require CHAP authentication, you are prompted for CHAP information including the user name and the secret when you apply the host profile. You cannot continue until you provide the name.

  1. Select Edit Host Profile, click Storage configuration, and click iSCSI Initiator Configuration.

  2. Select the folder for an already enabled initiator and set up the initiator.

  3. Set up the initiator. For many fields, the user is prompted as part of host customization.

Table 2. Host Profile Options that Prompt for Storage User Input

Information to Request User Input For

Setting the Host Profile Option

You are setting up the Fixed PSP configuration and want to prompt for the adapter and target IDs for the storage arrays that should use the Fixed PSP.

You can set the option only if the adapter is set up to use the Fixed PSP.

  1. Select Edit Host Profile, click Storage configuration.

  2. Click Native Multipathing (NMP).

  3. Click Path Selection Policy (PSP) configuration.

  4. In the Preferred Path window, select Prompt the user for adapter and target IDs on the host.

Configure FCoE adapter activation based on a user-specified MAC address.

You can set the option only if an activation profile exists.

  1. Select Edit Host Profile, click Storage configuration.

  2. Click Software FCoE configuration.

  3. Click Adapter Configuration.

  4. Click the activation profile and click Policy Profile.

  5. Select Activation policy based on adapter MAC address from the drop-down menu.

Table 3. Host Profile Options that Prompt for Security User Input

Information to Request User Input For

Setting the Host Profile Option

Administrator password for ESXi host when the host boots for the first time.

  1. Select Edit Host Profile, and click Security and Services.

  2. click Security Settings and click Security configuration.

  3. In the right panel, select User Input Password to be Used to Configure Administrator Password from the Administrator password drop-down menu.

Preconfigures a user for the ESXi host but prompts for the password for that user on each host when the host boots for the first time.

You can perform this task only if a user configuration already exists. Configure the user by selecting one of the options.

  • Assigned fixed user configurations is available for compatibility with ESX/ESXi 4.1 system, this option displays the password in the clear.

  • Assign advanced fixed user configurations is for users of ESXi 5.0 and later systems.

  • Specify the user configuration in the profile but prompt for password during host configuration allows you to specify the information about the user but prompt for a password on each host.

Prompt the user for credentials when the host joins the Active Directory domain.

  1. Set the Authentication configuration profile to use a fixed domain.

    1. Select Edit Host Profile, click Security and Services.

    2. Click Security Settings, and click Authentication configuration.

    3. Click Active Directory configuration.

    4. In the Domain Name drop-down menu, select Configure a fixed domain name.

  2. Set the method for joining the domain to prompt the user.

    1. Select Edit Host Profile, click Security and Services and click Authentication configuration.

    2. Click Active Directory configuration.

    3. In the Join Domain Method drop-down menu, select Use user specified AD credentials to join the host to domain.

Table 4. Host Profile Options that Prompt for Networking User Input

Information to Request User Input For

Setting the Host Profile Option

Prompt the user for the MAC address for a port group. You can have the system prompt the user in all cases (User specified MAC address...) or prompt the user only if no default is available.

  1. Select Edit Host Profile, click Networking configuration, and click Host port group.

  2. Click Management Network.

  3. In the Determine how MAC address for vmknic should be decided field, select how the system manages the MAC address.

    • User specified MAC Address to be used while applying the configuration

    • Prompt the user for the MAC Address if no default is available

Prompt the user for the IPv4 address for each ESXi host to which the profile is applied. You can have the system prompt the user in all cases (User specified IPv4 address...) or prompt the user only if no default is available.

  1. Select Edit Host Profile, click Networking configuration, and click Host port group.

  2. Click Management Network and click IP address settings.

  3. In the IPv4 address field, select how the system manages the IPv4 address.

    • User specified IPv4 Address to be used while applying the configuration

    • Prompt the user for the IPv4 Address if no default is available

Prompt the user for the IPv6 address for each ESXi host to which the profile is applied. You can have the system prompt the user in all cases (User specified IPv6 address...) or prompt the user only if no default is available.

  1. Select Edit Host Profile, click Networking configuration, and click Host port group.

  2. Click Management Network and click IP address settings.

  3. In the Static IPv6 address field, select how the system manages the IPv6 address.

    • User specified IPv6 Address to be used while applying the configuration

    • Prompt the user for the IPv6 Address if no default is available

Prompt the user for the DNS name of the host. You can have the system prompt the user in all cases (User specified host name...) or prompt the user only if no default is available.

  1. Select Edit Host Profile, click Networking configuration, and click DNS configuration.

  2. In the Host name field, select how the system manages the DNS configuration.

    • Prompt the user for host name if default is not available

    • User specified host name to be used while applying the configuration

Prompt the user for the MAC address for a distributed switch, its port group, or one of its services. Right-click the Host virtual NIC folder icon and click the Add sub-profile icon to determine the component to which the setting is applied.

You can decide to prompt the user in all cases or only if no default is available.

  1. Open Networking configuration.

  2. Click Host virtual NIC.

  3. In the Determine how MAC address for vmknic should be decided field, select how the system manages the MAC address for the distributed switch.

    • User specified MAC address to be used while applying the configuration

    • Prompt the user for the MAC address if no default is available

Prompt the user for the IPv4 address for a distributed switch, its port group, or one of its services. Right-click the Host virtual NIC folder icon and click the Add sub-profile icon to determine the component to which the setting is applied.

You can decide to prompt the user only if no default is available or in all cases.

  1. Open Networking configuration.

  2. Click Host virtual NIC.

  3. Click IP address settings.

  4. In the IPv4 address field, select how the system handles the IPv4 address for the distributed switch.

    • User specified IPv4 address to be used while applying the configuration

    • Prompt the user for IPv4 address if no default is available

Prompt the user for the IPv6 address for a distributed switch, its port group, or one of its services. Right-click the Host virtual NIC folder icon and click the Add sub-profile icon to determine the component to which the setting is applied.

You can decide to prompt the user only if no default is available or in all cases.

  1. Open Networking configuration.

  2. Open Host virtual NIC.

  3. Open IP address settings.

  4. In the Static IPv6 address field, select how the system manages the IPv6 address for the distributed switch.

    • User specified IPv6 address to be used while applying the configuration

    • Prompt the user for IPv6 address if no default is available