Before you can start to use vSphere Auto Deploy, you must prepare your environment. You start with server setup and hardware preparation. You must register the Auto Deploy software with the vCenter Server system that you plan to use for managing the hosts you provision, and install the VMware PowerCLI.

Before you turn on a host for PXE boot with vSphere Auto Deploy, you must install prerequisite software and set up the DHCP and TFTP servers that Auto Deploy interacts with.

Before you can run Auto Deploy cmdlets to create and modify the rules and rule sets that govern Auto Deploy behavior, you must install vSphere PowerCLI and all prerequisite software. The Auto Deploy cmdlets are included with the PowerCLI installation.

Auto Deploy cmdlets are implemented as Microsoft PowerShell cmdlets and included in vSphere PowerCLI. Users of Auto Deploy cmdlets can take advantage of all PowerCLI features.

You can use the vSphere Client, the vSphere Web Client or ESXi Shell to specify individual license keys, or you can set up bulk licensing by using PowerCLI cmdlets. Bulk licensing works for all ESXi hosts, but is especially useful for hosts provisioned with Auto Deploy.