Update Manager – Create and Modify Baseline Groups

by admin

Update Manager baselines can contain a collection of patches, upgrades, bug fixes and third-party extensions. Baseline groups are collections of already defined baselines, and allows you to combine baselines to ensure consistency when updating your environment. Baseline groups are created in the ‘Baselines and Groups’ tab, in Update Manager:


The different types of baseline that you can combine as part of a baseline group are as follows:

  • Upgrade Baseline – Allows you you to upgrade a host, a VM’s virtual hardware, VMware Tools, or virtual appliance
  • Patch Baseline – Defines a number of patches that must be applied to a given host
  • Extension Baseline – Contains extensions (additional software such as third-party device drivers) that can be applied to a host. All third-party software for ESX/ESXi hosts is classified as a host extension.

Update manager has a number of default baselines configured, which can be used immediately. These default baselines cannot be modified or deleted:

  • Critical Host Patches – Checks ESX/ESXi hosts for compliance with all critical patches
  • Non-Critical Host Patches – Checks ESX/ESXi hosts for compliance with all optional patches
  • VMware Tools Upgrade to Match Host – Checks virtual machines for compliance with the latest VMware Tools version on the host Update Manager supports upgrading of VMware

    Tools for virtual machines on hosts that are running ESX/ESXi 4.0 and later

  • VM Hardware Upgrade to Match Host – Checks the virtual hardware of a virtual machine for compliance with the latest version supported by the host. Update Manager supports upgrading to virtual hardware version 8.0 on hosts that are running ESXi 5.x
  • VA Upgrade to Latest – Checks virtual appliances compliance with the latest released virtual appliance version

Along with these default patch baselines, you can create your own. These baselines can be either Fixed or Dynamic:


Creating a Fixed Patch Baseline

The steps to create a fixed patch baseline are as follows:

  • In Update Manger, On the Baseline and Groups tab, click ‘Create’ .
  • Select Host Patch, as the baseline type to create, and click Next
  • Select Fixed for the type of baseline then click Next
  • Select the individual patches to include, then click Finish once complete.

Creating a Dynamic Patch Baseline

The steps for creating a dynamic patch baseline are as follows:

  • On the Baseline and Groups tab, click ‘Create’
  • Select ‘Host Patch’ as the baseline to create, then click Next
  • Select ‘Dynamic’ as the host patch baseline type, then click Next
  • On the Dynamic Baseline Criteria page, enter the relevant criteria for selecting the patches to include in the baseline:


  • On the next page you will have the opportunity to exclude any patches. Click Next.
  • The next page will allow you to manually specify any patches that you wish to include in the baseline. Click Next.
  • The last page gives you an opportunity to review the baseline settings, before clicking ‘Finish’ to create the baseline.

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