Open Virtualization Format

The Distributed Management Task Force (DMTF) is chartered with bringing industry together to collaborate on the development, adoption and promotion of interoperable management standards and initiatives for distributed desktop, network, enterprise and internet environments. Its Cloud Management Workgroup (CMWG) has leveraged the recommendations of an Incubator on Open Cloud Standards to focus on standardizing interactions between Cloud environments.

Current standards include a set of specifications that address the management cycle of a virtual environment. DMTF’s Virtualization Management VMAN‘s Open Virtualisation Format (OVF) specification provides a standard format for packaging and describing virtual machines and applications for deployment across heterogeneous virtualization platforms, while VMAN’s Profiles standardize many aspects of the operational management of a heterogeneous virtualized environment.

Membership connected with VMAN spans DMTF members such as technology vendors, government organizations, academia and end-users. Standards-based management is seen as a key building block of the dynamic data centre and uptake of the standard is perceived as reflecting real interest in simplifying virtual machine deployment. The aim of VMAN is to unleash the potential of virtualization by delivering broadly supported interoperability and portability standards to virtual computing environments. IT managers can deploy pre-installed, pre-configured solutions across heterogeneous computing networks and manage those applications through the entire lifecycle.

OVF documents available on the DMTF website

  • Open Virtualization Format Specification – v.1.1.0, January 2010
  • Technical documents and whitepapers are also published on the DMTF website for anyone interested in standards work