vStorage API definition

This definition is part of our Essential Guide: Enterprise architect's guide to API best practices and trends
Contributor(s): Sue Troy

A vStorage API is an application program interface (API) from VMware that enables third-party storage and backup vendors to integrate their products with VMware’s vSphere server virtualization platform.

As of September 2011, VMware provides four APIs for third-party vendors: 

  • vStorage APIs for Data Protection (VADP) -- enables backup applications to perform file- or VM-level backup of running virtual machines.
  • vStorage APIs for Multipathing (VAMP) -- helps to intelligently control path selection from storage adapters in a host to storage devices, thereby optimizing storage I/O throughput. 
  • vStorage APIs for Array Integration (VAAI) -- enables certain storage tasks to be offloaded from the server hardware to the storage array.
  • vStorage APIs for Storage Awareness (VASA) -- exposes storage architecture specifications to vSphere to enable policy-based storage management.

Third-party vendors build support for the APIs into their products to facilitate tighter integration between their products and vSphere and to improve performance and scalability for their customers. vStorage APIs were first introduced in Version 4.0 of VMware’s vSphere

This was first published in November 2011

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