A VM-Host affinity rule specifies whether or not the members of a selected virtual machine DRS group can run on the members of a specific host DRS group.

Note: This topic describes using affinity rules for DRS. You can also use affinity rules without DRS.
Unlike a VM-VM affinity rule, which specifies affinity (or anti-affinity) between individual virtual machines, a VM-Host affinity rule specifies an affinity relationship between a group of virtual machines and a group of hosts. There are 'required' rules (designated by "must") and 'preferential' rules (designated by "should".)

A VM-Host affinity rule includes the following components.

  • One virtual machine DRS group.
  • One host DRS group.
  • A designation of whether the rule is a requirement ("must") or a preference ("should") and whether it is affinity ("run on") or anti-affinity ("not run on").

Because VM-Host affinity rules are cluster-based, the virtual machines and hosts that are included in a rule must all reside in the same cluster. If a virtual machine is removed from the cluster, it loses its DRS group affiliation, even if it is later returned to the cluster.