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vCenter Operations Manager Basics

vCenter Operations Manager (vCOPS) collects performance data from each object at every level of your virtual environment. It stores and analyzes the data, and uses that analysis to provide real-time information about problems, or potential problems, anywhere in your virtual environment.

It provides following function

  • Combines key metrics into single scores for environmental health and efficiency and capacity risk.
  • Calculates the range of normal behavior for every metric and highlights abnormalities. Adjusts the dynamic thresholds as incoming data allows it to better define the normal values for a metric.
  • Presents graphical representations of current and historical states of your entire virtual environment or selected parts of it.
  • Displays information about changes in the hierarchy of your virtual environment. For example, when a virtual machine is moved to a different ESX host, you can see how these changes affect the performance of the objects involved.


Attributes – Each type of data that vCenter Operations Manager collects is called an attribute

Metrics – An instance of an attribute for a specific inventory object is called a metric. For example, free memory for a specific virtual machine is a metric

Metric Value – Each piece of data that vCenter Operations Manager collects is called a metric value

Dynamic Thresholds – vCenter Operations Manager defines dynamic thresholds for every metric based on the current and historical values of the metric. The normal range of values for a metric can differ on different days at different times because of regular cycles of use and behavior.

Hard Thresholds – Unlike dynamic thresholds, hard thresholds are fixed values that you enter to define what is normal behavior for an object. These arbitrary values do not change over time unless you change them manually.

Key Performance Indicators – vCenter Operations Manager defines attributes that are critical to the performance of an object as key performance indicators (KPI). KPI are weighted more heavily in the calculations that determine the health of an object.

Metrics Concept – To get more information about this, please click on the following link

Object Type

vCenter Operations Manager uses specific icons so that you can distinguish between virtual machines, ESX hosts, and other objects in the inventory. All these objects will be monitored via inventory pane in vCOPS

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