Naming and vMotion changes in vSphere 4.1

With the release of their vSphere 4.1 product, VMware has made some naming changes to various products and technologies. While some of the naming changes are significant, others are pretty minor but still interesting. In this post, I’ll outline four such changes.


  • The product that VMware used to refer to as the “free ESXi” is now known as VMware vSphere Hypervisor.
  • In order to better differentiate the free product from the more capable enterprise grade and not-free products, VMware now officially refers to ESX/ESXi as Hypervisor Architectures.
  • VMotion is no more, but vMotion has risen! Yes, VMware has finally eschewed the capital V in the feature name in favor of a lower case v. Although this is a very minor change, I actually really like it as it just “feels” better.
  • As a result of the previous change, Storage VMotion is now called Storage vMotion. From a naming consistency standpoint, this certainly makes sense.


Did you know that, beyond getting a naming revision, vMotion has been greatly enhanced in vSphere 4.1? First of all, vMotion now support more and faster concurrent operations:

  • 4 concurrent VMotion operations per host on a 1GB network
  • 8 concurrent VMotion operations per host on a 10GB network
  • 8 concurrent VMotion operations per datastore


Further, vSphere 4.1’s VMDirectPath and USB Device Passthrough features are supported in conjunction with vMotion operations. In addition, Fault Tolerant (FT) protected virtual machines can now vMotion via the Distributed Resource Scheduler (DRS), although the product does not yet support Storage vMotion. In order to have the best possible vMotion experience, VMware recommends that you make sure that ESX/ESXi hosts are at the same build level.

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