By default, vSphere Auto Deploy provisions hosts only if a partition is available on the host. The auto-partitioning option creates a VMFS datastore on your host's local storage. You can set up a reference host to auto-partition all hosts that you provision with vSphere Auto Deploy.

Caution: If you change the default auto-partitioning behavior, vSphere 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 that you want to use as your reference host with an ESXi image by using vSphere 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 navigator, browse to the host that you want to use as a reference host.
  2. Select the Manage tab and select Settings.
  3. Under System, select Advanced System Settings and click Edit.
  4. Scroll to VMkernel.Boot.autoPartition and select the Enabled check box.
  5. (Optional) If you want the local SSDs to remain unpartitioned, scroll to VMkernel.Boot.skipPartitioningSsds and select the Enabled check box.
  6. Click OK.
  7. If no host profile exists for your reference host, create a host profile.


Auto-partitioning is performed when the hosts boot.

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