You create a new and empty cluster object by using the Quickstart workflow in the vSphere Client.

Starting with vSphere 7.0, the clusters that you create can use vSphere Lifecycle Manager images for host updates and upgrades.

A vSphere Lifecycle Manager image is a combination of vSphere software, driver software, and desired firmware with regard to the underlying host hardware. The image that a cluster uses defines the full software set that you want to run on the ESXi hosts in the cluster: the ESXi version, additional VMware-provided software, and vendor software, such as firmware and drivers.

The image that you define during cluster creation is not immediately applied to the hosts. If you do not set up an image for the cluster, the cluster uses baselines and baseline groups. Starting with vSphere 7.0 Update 2, during cluster creation, you can select a reference host and use the image on that host as the image for the newly created cluster. For more information about using images and baselines to manage hosts in clusters, see the Managing Host and Cluster Lifecycle documentation.

Prerequisites

  • Verify that a data center, or a folder within a data center, exists in the inventory.
  • Verify that hosts have the same ESXi version and patch level.
  • Obtain the user name and password of the root user account for the host.
  • Verify that hosts do not have a manual vSAN configuration or a manual networking configuration.
  • To create a cluster that you manage with a single image, review the requirements and limitations information in the Managing Host and Cluster Lifecycle documentation.

Required privileges:

  • Host.Inventory.Create cluster

Procedure

  1. In the vSphere Client home page, navigate to Home > Hosts and Clusters.
  2. Select a data center.
  3. Right-click the data center and select New Cluster.
  4. Enter a name for the cluster.
  5. Select DRS, vSphere HA, or vSAN cluster features.
    Option Description
    To use DRS with this cluster
    1. Slide the switch to the right to enable the DRS service.
    2. (Optional) Click the info icon on the left to see the Default Settings for the DRS service. The default values are:
      • Automation Level: Fully Automated Migration
      • Threshold: 3
    To use vSphere HA with this cluster
    1. Slide the switch to the right to enable the vSphere HA service.
    2. (Optional) Click the info icon on the left to see the Default Settings for the vSphere HA service. You are present with the following default values:
      Host Monitoring: Enabled
      Admission Control: Enabled
      VM Monitoring: Disabled
    To use vSAN with this cluster
    • Slide the switch to the right to enable the vSAN service.

    For more information on vSAN, see Creating a vSAN Cluster in the vSAN Planning and Deployment documentation.

    You can override the default values later on in the workflow.
  6. (Optional) To create a cluster that you manage with a single image, select the Manage all hosts in the cluster with a single image check box.
    For information about creating a cluster that you manage with a single image, see the Managing Host and Cluster Lifecycle documentation.
  7. Click Next.
  8. Review the cluster details and click Finish.
    The cluster appears in the vCenter Server inventory. The Quickstart service appears under the Configure tab.
  9. (Optional) To rename your cluster and to enable or disable cluster services, click Edit in the Cluster basics card.

Results

You have created an empty cluster in the vCenter Server inventory.

What to do next

Add hosts to the cluster.