IT Operations Definitions

This glossary explains the meaning of key words and phrases that information technology (IT) and business professionals use when discussing IT operations and related software products. You can find additional definitions by visiting WhatIs.com or using the search box below.

  • L

    log analytics

    Log analytics is the assessment of a recorded set of information from one or more events, captured from a computer, network, application operating system (OS) or other IT ecosystem component.

  • log management

    Log management is the collective processes and policies used to administer and facilitate the generation, transmission, analysis, storage, archiving and ultimate disposal of the large volumes of log data created within an information system.

  • Loggly

    Loggly is a cloud-based enterprise log management and analytics tool. The Software as a Service product makes log data accessible and useful to more groups within an enterprise.

  • LXD (Linux container hypervisor)

    LXD is an open source container management extension for Linux Containers (LXC).

  • M

    mean time to detect (MTTD)

    Mean time to detect or discover (MTTD), also referred to as mean time to identify (MTTI), is a measure of how long problems exist in an IT deployment before the appropriate parties become aware of them.

  • MIPS (million instructions per second)

    The number of MIPS (million instructions per second) is a general measure of computing performance and, by implication, the amount of work a larger computer can do.

  • MIS (management information systems)

    MIS, or management information systems, is the software and hardware to support critical business applications. MIS also refers to the staff who select and manage these systems.

  • mission-critical application

    A mission-critical application is a software program or service that must function for the success of a business or segment of a business.

  • mobile cloud applications

    A mobile cloud application is a software program that is designed to be accessed over the Internet by many types of portable computing devices.

  • ModelOps (model operations)

    ModelOps (model operations) is a holistic approach to enable analytics models to progress from the lab to production so that they can be scaled and managed to meet organizations' demand.

  • mutation testing

    Mutation testing, also known as code mutation testing, is a form of white box testing where testers will change specific components of an application's source code to ensure a software test suite will be able to detect the changes.

  • N

    Nagios

    Nagios is an open source monitoring system for computer systems.

  • native cloud application (NCA)

    A native cloud application (NCA) is a program that is designed specifically for a cloud computing architecture.

  • Netflix Spinnaker

    Netflix Spinnaker is an open source, multi-cloud continuous delivery application that can be used to release software updates rapidly and efficiently.

  • NoOps

    NoOps (no operations) is the concept that an IT environment can become so automated and abstracted from the underlying infrastructure that there is no need for a dedicated team to manage software in-house. 

  • O

    on-demand computing

    On-demand (OD) computing is an increasingly popular enterprise model in which computing resources are made available to the user as needed.

  • Open Container Initiative

    The Open Container Initiative, formerly known as the Open Container Project, is a Linux Foundation project designed to establish common open standards for container platforms.

  • open core model (open core software)

    The open core model is a business strategy where a company offers a “core” version of a product with limited features as free and open source (FOSS) software at the same time an add-on commercial version is released as proprietary software.

  • P

    Perforce Software

    Perforce is a software company that specializes in software configuration management, version control and collaboration products. The company is the recognized market leader in version control within the gaming sector.

  • phased rollout

    Phased rollout is a hardware or software migration method that involves incremental implementation of a new system. A phased migration might be conducted either by implementing the entire new system in some locations or business units or by implementing separate modules of the system independently until the implementation is complete.

  • policy engine

    A policy engine is a software component that allows an organization to create, monitor and enforce rules about how network resources and the organization's data can be accessed.  

  • preventive maintenance

    Preventive maintenance is the practice of routinely taking measures in hardware administration that reduces the risk of failures and improves the likelihood of quick recovery in the event that a failure does occur.

  • progressive delivery

    Progressive delivery is the process of pushing changes to a product iteratively -- first to a small audience and then to increasingly larger audiences to maintain quality control (QC).

  • Puppet (Puppet Labs)

    Puppet is an open source systems management tool for centralizing and automating configuration management. Administrators can encode the configuration of a service as a policy, which Puppet then monitors and enforces.

  • R

    RancherOS (Linux)

    RancherOS is a lightweight Linux operating system distribution that includes only the necessary libraries and services to deploy and scale containers.

  • Red Hat Atomic Host

    Red Hat Atomic Host is a variant of the Red Hat Enterprise Linux supported, open source operating system, designed to be a minimal OS with optimizations for container hosting.

  • remote server management

    Remote server management is a market segment that includes products and services that enable IT professionals to monitor and control data centers from offsite.

  • rolling deployment

    A rolling deployment is the installation of software updates on one server or server subset at a time, rather than updating all servers or server subsets at the same time.

  • root cause analysis

    Root cause analysis is a way to determine how a problematic event occurred by examining why, how and when the casual factors happened after the fact.

  • S

    SaltStack

    SaltStack, often referred to as simply "Salt," is an open source configuration management and orchestration tool for automating repeated system administrative and code deployment tasks.

  • SecOps (DevSecOps)

    SecOps, also called DevSecOps, is a management approach that connects security and operations teams, similar to how DevOps unifies software developers and operations professionals.

  • serverless computing

    Serverless computing is an event-driven application design and deployment paradigm in which computing resources are provided as scalable cloud services.

  • service mesh

    A service mesh is a dedicated infrastructure layer that controls service-to-service communication over a network.

  • ServiceNow

    ServiceNow is a cloud-based company that provides software as a service (SaaS) for technical management support.

  • shift left testing

    Shift left testing is an approach used to speed software testing and facilitate development by moving the testing process to an earlier point in the development cycle.

  • sidecar proxy

    A sidecar proxy is an application design pattern which abstracts certain features, such as inter-service communications, monitoring and security, away from the main architecture to ease the tracking and maintenance of the application as a whole.

  • site reliability engineering (SRE)

    Site reliability engineering (SRE) is the application of scripting and automation to IT operations tasks such as maintenance and support. The goal of SRE is to swiftly fix bugs and remove manual work in rote tasks.

  • software asset management (SAM)

    Software asset management (SAM) is the part of IT asset management that seeks to ensure compliance with license agreements and prevent overspending on software.

  • software-defined infrastructure control (SDIC)

    Software-defined infrastructure control (SDIC) is an analytics-driven approach to balancing the resources that application programs demand in virtual and cloud environments.

  • system operator (sysop)

    A sysop is the person who runs a computer server.

  • T

    trusted execution environment (TEE)

    A trusted execution environment (TEE) is an area on the main processor of a device that is separated from the system’s main operating system (OS) to ensure that sensitive data can be stored and managed in a secure environment.

  • U

    Ubuntu Core

    Ubuntu Core is a transactional version of the Ubuntu Linux OS, made specifically for internet of things (IoT) devices and large container deployments.

  • unikernel

    A unikernel is a library-based operating system that only includes functionalities required by the specific application that runs on it.

  • V

    VMware PKS (VMware Pivotal Container Service)

    VMware PKS (VMware Pivotal Container Service) is a managed container service that allows users to simplify, operate and manage Kubernetes clusters in multi-cloud environments.

  • VMware vSphere Integrated Containers (VIC)

    VMware vSphere Integrated Containers allow an administrator to deploy and manage containers alongside their traditional VMs in vSphere.

  • Y

    YAML (YAML Ain't Markup Language)

    YAML (YAML Ain't Markup Language) is a data-oriented language structure used as the input format for diverse software applications.

  • Z

    Zabbix

    Zabbix is an open source monitoring software tool for diverse IT components, including networks, servers, virtual machines (VMs) and cloud services.

  • Zenoss

    Zenoss is a company that develops hybrid IT monitoring analytics software for visibility in cloud, virtual and physical IT environments.

  • zero touch provisioning (ZTP)

    Zero touch provisioning (ZTP) is a switch feature that allows the devices to be provisioned and configured automatically, eliminating most of the manual labor involved with adding them to a network.

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