If you’re going to adopt
VMware for virtualization, you’ll need to get to know the terminology. Here are the first
50 of 100 definitions to start.

Not every one of these terms
and acronyms is specific to VMware or even to virtualization, but you’ll likely
run into all of them as you venture into virtualization technology. The order is not alphabetical; rather, I’ve tried to list them in the order of the most basic to the more intermediate and advanced terms.

1. VM: Virtual Machine. Okay,
that’s easy enough!

2. ESXi: The vSphere
Hypervisor from VMware. For extra trivia points, know that Elastic Sky was the
original proposed name of the hypervisor and is now the name of a band made up
of VMware employees.

3. vmkernel: Officially the
“operating system” that runs ESXi and delivers storage networking for VMs. More info.

4. VMFS: Virtual Machine
File System for ESXi hosts, a clustered file system for running VMs.

5. iSCSI: Ethernet-based
shared storage protocol.

6. SAS: Drive type for local
disks (also SATA).

7. FCoE: Fibre Channel over
Ethernet, a networking and storage technology.

8. HBA: Host Bus Adapter for
Fibre Channel storage networks.

9. IOPs: Input/Outputs per second,
detailed measurement of a drive’s performance.

10. VM Snapshot: A
point-in-time representation of a VM.

11. ALUA: Asymmetrical
logical unit access, a storage array feature. Duncan Epping explains it well.

12. NUMA: Non-uniform memory
access, when multiple processors are involved their memory access is relative
to their location.

13. Virtual NUMA:
Virtualizes NUMA with VMware hardware version 8 VMs.

14. LUN: Logical unit number,
identifies shared storage (Fibre Channel/iSCSI).

15. pRDM: Physical mode raw
device mapping, presents a LUN directly to a VM.

16. vRDM: Virtual mode raw
device mapping, encapsulates a path to a LUN specifically for one VM in a VMDK.

17. SAN: Storage area
network, a shared storage technique for block protocols (Fibre Channel/iSCSI).

18. NAS: Network attached
storage, a shared storage technique for file protocols (NFS).

19. NFS: Network file
system, a file-based storage protocol.

20. DAS: Direct attached
storage, disk devices in a host directly.

21. VAAI: vStorage APIs for
Array Integration, the ability to offload I/O commands to the disk array.

22. SSD: Solid state disk, a
non-rotational drive that is faster than rotating drives.

23. VSAN: Virtual SAN, a new
VMware announcement for making DAS deliver SAN features in a virtualized

24. vSwitch: A virtual
switch, places VMs on a physical network.

25. vDS: vNetwork
Distributed Switch, an enhanced version of the virtual switch.

26. ISO: Image file, taken
from ISO 9660file system for optical drives.

27. vSphere Client:
Administrative interface of vCenter Server.

28. vSphere Web Client:
Web-based administrative interface of vCenter Server.

29. Host Profiles: Feature
to deploy a pre-determined configuration to an ESXi host.

30. Auto Deploy: Technique
to automatically install ESXi to a host.

31. VUM: vSphere Update
Manager, a way to update hosts and VMs with latest patches, VMware Tools and
product updates.

32. vCLI: vSphere Command
Line Interface, allows tasks to be run against hosts and vCenter Server.

33. vSphere HA: High
Availability, will restart a VM on another host if it fails.

34. vCenter Server
: Will keep the vCenter Server available in the event a host fails
which is running vCenter.

35. Virtual Appliance: A
pre-packed VM with an application on it.

36. vCenter Server: Server
application that runs vSphere.

37. vCSA: Virtual appliance
edition of vCenter Server.

38. vCloud Director:
Application to pool vCenter environments and enable self-deployment of VMs.

39. vCloud Automation
: IT service delivery through policy and portals, get familiar with vCAC.

40. VADP: vSphere APIs for
Data Protection, a way to leverage the infrastructure for backups.

41. MOB: Managed Object
Reference, a technique vCenter uses to classify every item.

42. DNS: Domain Name
Service, a name resolution protocol. Not related to VMware, but it is
imperative you set DNS up correctly to virtualize with vSphere.

43. vSphere: Collection of
VMs, ESXi hosts, and vCenter Server.

44. SSH to ESXi host: The
administrative interface you want to use for troubleshooting if you can’t use
the vSphere Client or vSphere Web Client.

45. vCenter Linked Mode: A
way of pooling vCenter Servers, typically across geographies.

46. vMotion: A VM migration

47. Storage vMotion: A VM
storage migration technique from one datastore to another.

48. vSphere DRS: Distributed
Resource Scheduler, service that manages performance of VMs.

49. vSphere SDRS: Storage
DRS, manages free space and datastore latency for VMs in pools.

50. Storage DRS Cluster: A
collection SDRS objects (volumes, VMs, configuration).

This will do for starters, but I’ll have 50 more for you in a follow-up post as you get on your way to becoming a VMware vExpert.

What questions do you have as a beginner? Let us know the aspects of virtualization technology that you find the most challenging.


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