Whether you manage the hosts and clusters in your environment with vSphere Lifecycle Manager baselines or vSphere Lifecycle Manager images has an impact on the basic cluster operations.

All cluster-related operations are described in full detail in the vCenter Server and Host Management documentation.

For detailed information about all requirements and limitations that are related to usingvSphere Lifecycle Manager, see vSphere Lifecycle Manager Requirements and Specifics.

For information about using Auto Deploy to deploy and provision ESXi hosts, see VMware ESXi Installation and Setup.

Creating a Cluster

When you create a new cluster, you can specify an image to be applied to all hosts in the cluster. If you do not specify an image during the creation of the cluster, you must use baselines for host patching and upgrade operations. You can switch from using baselines to using images at a later time. For more information about switching from baselines to images, see Switching from Baselines to Images.

Before you create a cluster that uses a single image or switch to using images, verify that the cluster meets all requirements for using images. See vSphere Lifecycle Manager Requirements and Specifics.

Extending a Cluster

You can extend a cluster by adding hosts to the cluster.

You can add hosts of any version to a cluster that you manage with baselines.

You can add hosts to a cluster that you manage with a single image only if the hosts are of version 7.0 and meet all other requirements. See vSphere Lifecycle Manager Requirements and Specifics.

The image that the cluster uses is applied to the newly added host upon remediation.

Removing Hosts from a Cluster

Removing a host from a cluster is a straightforward procedure. If you remove a host from a cluster that uses a single image, the host retains the software and firmware installed during the last remediation against the image for the cluster.