VMware-vSphere-Auto-Deploy-configuration-guide-Part1

vSphere Auto Deploy is tool released with version 5.0 of vSphere suite. It is used to deploy vSphere hosts using network boot (PXE) with DHCP and TFTP in standard and automated way. With Auto Deploy you eliminate configuration mismatch, deployment of servers is centralized and you can benefit from stateless deployment. In the first part, I will focus on installing and configuring infrastructure components – TFTP, DHCP and Auto Deploy.

vSphere Auto Deploy configuration

Auto Deploy uses several components which have to installed and configured:

Auto Deploy components:

  • TFTP
  • DNS
  • DHCP
  • PowerCLI
  • Software Depot
  • Host Profile

vSphere Auto Deploy

vSphere Auto Deploy installation

Insert VMware vCenter installation DVD to a server where you want to deploy Auto Deploy. I installed it on vCenter Server for simplicity.

  1. Select vSphere Auto Deploy and click Install.
    VMware vSphere Auto Deploy installation guide - software 1
  2. Click Next.
    VMware vSphere Auto Deploy installation guide - software 2
  3. Accept End User License Agreement.
    VMware vSphere Auto Deploy installation guide - software 3
  4. Select installation directory for software. You can change Auto Deploy repository directory.
    I strongly suggest to change defaults and point to separate disk to avoid filling up OS drive.
    VMware vSphere Auto Deploy installation guide - software 4
  5. Provide information about vCenter and Active Directory credentials.
    VMware vSphere Auto Deploy installation guide - software 5
  6. Confirm vCenter SSL Thumbprint.
    VMware vSphere Auto Deploy installation guide - software 6
  7. Select default ports or change them if it is required in your environment.
    VMware vSphere Auto Deploy installation guide - software 7
  8. Select vCenter Auto Deploy identification name – it can be fqdn or IP address.
    VMware vSphere Auto Deploy installation guide - software 8
  9. Click Install.
    VMware vSphere Auto Deploy installation guide - software 9
  10. Click Finish and close window.
    VMware vSphere Auto Deploy installation guide - software 10
  11. Log in to vCenter Server and check if Auto Deploy is visible.
    VMware vSphere Auto Deploy installation guide - software 11

vSphere Auto Deploy TFTP

First prerequisite to have successful automated deployment we need to install and configure TFTP, server. There is plenty of Windows TFTP server around and I chose TFTPD64. You can download it from here.

  1. Double click the TFTPD64 installation file and accept EULA.
    VMware vSphere Auto Deploy TFTPD64 - 1
  2. Click Next.
    VMware vSphere Auto Deploy TFTPD64 - 2
  3. Select directory to install TFTPD64 and click Install.
    VMware vSphere Auto Deploy TFTPD64 - 3

After TFTP server is installed start it and navigate to settings. You can use it to be DHCP server as well – in my case I use Windows Server 2012 DHCP Server. In TFTP tab provide a location of TFTP base directory. In my case it is C:\Program Files\Tftpd64\Boot and we will copy here Auto Deploy boot files.

  1. Navigate to Auto Deploy in vSphere Client and click Download TFTP Boot Zip.
    VMware vSphere Auto Deploy TFTPD64 - 4
  2. Copy it to TFTP Boot directory and extract it.
    VMware vSphere Auto Deploy TFTPD64 - 5

Now we need to configure DHCP server to work with TFTP server.

vSphere Auto Deploy DHCP

After TFTP server is configured let’s configure DHCP scope to work with it. I installed DHCP Role in Windows Server 2012.

  1. Open DHCP MMC, select IPV4 scope and click New Scope.
    VMware vSphere Auto Deploy DHCP - 1
  2. Click Next.
    VMware vSphere Auto Deploy DHCP - 2
  3. Give the scope name and description for easier identification.
    VMware vSphere Auto Deploy DHCP - 3
  4. Enter IP range for the scope.
    VMware vSphere Auto Deploy DHCP - 13
  5. I skipped Exclusion and Delay section.
  6. Select desired lease duration. I selected default 8 days.
    VMware vSphere Auto Deploy DHCP - 5
  7. We will configure scope options later on so we select. No. I will configure these options later.
    VMware vSphere Auto Deploy DHCP - 6
  8. Click Finish.
    VMware vSphere Auto Deploy DHCP - 7
  9. You will see a red exclamation mark on the scope – we need to activate it. Click on the scope and select Activate.
    VMware vSphere Auto Deploy DHCP - 8
  10. In order to make TFTP work, we have to configure two scope options. 066 Boot Server Host Name and 067 Bootfile Name. Click Scope Options and Configure Options.
    VMware vSphere Auto Deploy DHCP - 9
  11. Enter the value for option 066. It is the address of TFTP server – in my case ws01.marusiak.local.
    VMware vSphere Auto Deploy DHCP - 10
  12. Ener value for option 067. It is undionly.kpxe.vmw-hardwired.
    VMware vSphere Auto Deploy DHCP - 12

vSphere Auto Deploy DNS

In order to boot successfully we need to create DNS entries for each ESXi host we will boot from the network. I created three entries in the primary zone with PTR records in reverse zone.

In the second part of Auto Deploy guide, we will continue configuration.

It is alive!

As you see on screenshot network boot is working.
VMware vSphere Auto Deploy DHCP - 11

Part2

https://wojcieh.net/vmware-vsphere-auto-deploy-configuration-guide-part-2/

VMware vSphere Auto Deploy configuration guide – Part 1
Rate this post
Wojciech Marusiak
Social Media

Wojciech Marusiak

Senior Solutions Cloud Architect at Consort CT
I am innovative and experienced VMware and Windows Server Engineer with over 10 years in the IT industry specializing in VMware virtualization and Microsoft Server environment.

My experience and skills have been proven by leading vendor certifications like VMware Certified Implementation Expert 6 – Data Center Virtualization, VMware Certified Advanced Professional 6 – Data Center Virtualization Design, VMware Certified Professional 6 - Data Center Virtualization, VMware Certified Professional 6 - Network Virtualization, AWS Certified Solutions Architect - Associate, ITIL V3, VMware vExpert 2014 - 2017 and VMware vExpert NSX 2017 Award.

My blog wojcieh.net - was voted #43 in Top vBlog 2017 contest!
Wojciech Marusiak
Social Media

Latest posts by Wojciech Marusiak (see all)