VMware Employee
VMware Employee

Nested ESX - Stateful install with auto-deploy?

I’m trying to test ESXi 6.7 and Auto Deploy on nested ESXi VMs.  It's understand that it is not supported but just doing functional testing.

I’m having issues getting a Stateful image to install.  Auto Deploy is working and its getting the host profile but it only installing Stateless ESXi.

Normally, for a physical server, when I specify “Enable stateful installs on host” and the correct driver under “System image Cache” the Host would reboot after the initial OS load.  This doesn’t’ t happen on the nested VM.

We've tried using different drive types and specifying different drivers “pscsi,mptsas,local” or using model “Virtual Disk” but it just builds Stateless hosts.

Does anyone have this working?  What should we specify under System image Cache for “Arguments for first disk?  Or is there something else possibly missing?



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I had to test the same functions before installing 6.7 for the customer and the configuration is working with the following parameters: mptspi.vmhba1:C0:T0:L0, local

The auto deploy state full installation requires the following parameters, first is esx if you want to replace an existing installed configuration, second the driver used for your boot disk, third the disk name or identification if you have more than one disk in the ESX, then local or remote if you have a local disk or a boot on SAN configuration.

Here are the steps I used to create the configuration

1- create a new ESXI manually to find the driver and disk information

- I created a ESXi virtual with a 2GB disk that I used as boot disk and I installed the vSPhere 6.7 on It. Once It is installed, I retrieve the driver information


First parameter is the driver: 

     - I used the esxcfg-scsi to discover the driver used - The mptspi is used in my virtual machine. this is the first parameter in the argument for first disk

Second parameter is the destination disk:

     -The 2GB disk is seen by the vmhba1:C0:T0:L0

Third parameter specified is local


Edit the host profile to have a result like this: mptspi.vmhba1:C0:T0:L0, local

Power-off your ESXi or create a new one. If you keep the same virtual ESX, delete and recreate the boot disk.

Configure the DHCP and boot on PXE.

The system will boot on PXE, install the OS, install the profile, reboot and start the disk boot. After the boot you should find the partitions:


Hope this helps



Bernard Delattre VCI, VCP5, VCAP
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Hello Bernard,

it this solution working for you even in 7.0? I've tried multiple options, but it is still being booted as stateless.

Thanks in advance.


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