Apptio Glossary

Document created by Employee on Feb 14, 2017Last modified by Employee on Oct 2, 2018
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Welcome to the Apptio Glossary! Select a letter below or Ctrl+F to find the term you are looking for. You can also click here to download a copy. Special thanks to Ryan Paul for curating these glossary terms. 




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Above The LineDenotes revenue and expense items that enter fully and directly into the calculation of periodic net income, in contrast to below the line items that affect capital accounts directly and net income only indirectly. Additionally, charges from external vendors such as wireless and telephone charges are often above the line because money is being paid to external vendors, thereby affecting P&L. See also: Below The Line, Blue Dollars, Green Dollars
Accounting- Accrual Basis

Accrual basis taxpayers include items when they are earned and claim deductions when expenses are incurred. An accrual basis taxpayer looks to the "all-events test" and "earlier-of test" to determine when income is earned. Under the all-events test, an accrual basis taxpayer generally must include income "for the taxable year when all the events have occurred that fix the right to receive income and the amount of the income can be determined with reasonable accuracy." Under the "earlier-of test", an accrual basis taxpayer receives income when (1) the required performance occurs, (2) payment therefore is due, or (3) payment therefore is made, whichever happens earliest. Under the earlier of test outlined in Revenue Ruling 74-607, an accrual basis taxpayer may be treated as a cash basis taxpayer when payment is received before the required performance and before the payment is actually due. An accrual basis taxpayer generally can claim a deduction "in the taxable year in which all the events have occurred that establish the fact of the liability, the amount of the liability can be determined with reasonable accuracy, and economic performance has occurred with respect to the liability." Similar definition of accrual basis accounting is true for financial accounting purposes, except that revenue can't be recognized until it's earned even if a cash payment has already been received by the tax authorities


Basis of accounting - Wikipedia 

Accounting - Cash Basis

In financial reporting the cash method of accounting is used when accounting records revenue when cash from customers is received, and records expenses when they are paid in cash.[5] In the tax environment cash basis tax payers include income when it is received, and claim deductions when expenses are paid. A cash basis taxpayer can look to the doctrine of constructive receipt and the doctrine of cash equivalence to help determine when income is received. Most individuals start as cash basis taxpayers. There are four types of taxpayers that cannot use the cash basis: (1) corporations with over $5,000,000 in gross receipts; (2) partnerships with at least one C corporation partner; (3) tax shelters; and (4) taxpayers Apptio Glossary 5 required to keep inventory (retail, wholesale, manufacturer etc...) Exceptions (1) Farming Businesses (2) Qualified PSC's (3) Entities with gross receipts of not more than $7,000,000.

Action Menu

A menu at the top of the Apptio application browser window in a project page. You can display the Action menu by clicking the small triangle Action menu near the project name.

Activity Based Costing (ABC)

A costing methodology that identifies activities in an organization and assigns the cost of each activity with resources to all products and services according to the actual consumption by the products and services. This model assigns more indirect costs into direct costs compared to conventional costing models.
For a concise overview, see:

Admin role

The highest level role in the Apptio applications. Users of type admin have all available permissions.

AHQ (Ad Hoc Query)

In previous releases, Apptio provided mostly auto-generated object reports based on the data being modeled. In later releases, the ability to create Ad Hoc components on reports was added.

Allocated Storage

Usable storage that has been dedicated to a logical volume on a server.


See: Unused Storage, File System Utilization 


A relationship between two objects in an Apptio model in which data is passed from one object to another. 

A rule that is established within a model to spread an established value (provided by drivers) from object to object . Allocations are configured between objects throughout the model to “connect” them and enable the flow of value (e.g. cost, unit counts, etc.) from one object to other objects

Amortization CPA

The allocation of the cost of intangible assets (e.g., software) to periods in which the assets are used – matching principle! Accountants spread the cost over the useful life of the asset..

Amortization does NOT mean the decline in value of an asset! Amortization is an expense (OpEx) Tangible assets are “depreciated” (e.g. hardware depreciation). In-tangible assets are “amortized” (e.g. software amortization).

See also "Depreciation".


Application software, also known as an application or an app, is computer software designed to help the user to perform specific tasks. Examples include accounts payable software, accounting software, office suites, graphics software and media players. It is a type of Software and includes various aspects including custom-built applications, off-the-shelf applications and hosted Software as a Service (SaaS). A combination of applications by one provider is called a suite.

Generally, users do not interact with system software as it works in the background whereas users interact with application software while doing different activities. A computer may not require more than one type of system software while there may be a number of application software programs installed on the computer at the same time. System software can run independently of the application software while application software cannot run without the presence of the system software.

Application Family

A collection or categorization of one or more Applications. It is a label generally used within an IT organization (not listed in the Service Taxonomy or “Bill of IT” provided to to supported Technology clients). An Application can only be a member of a single family. The use of Application Family enables more generic conversations about Applications when specificity is not needed. Application Families are not directly related to Services except by way of the relationship defined between an Application and a Service.


Supplied by Matt Temple's Definitions document

Application Portfolio

A collection of all Application Families and, therefore, all Applications\


Supplied by Matt Temple's Definitions document

Application Portfolio Management

A management framework for IT decision makers to work and govern the Applications contained in the portfolio.

Application Software

Computer software designed to help the user to perform specific tasks

ARC - Additional Resource Costs

Pronounced “Arks”. Refers to an adjustment to a service contract based on an increase in the volume of services performed by the vendor. Apptio Glossary 7 An ARC is the additional charge (above the base charge) that is paid for each pricing unit that is used above the volume baseline. If usage is less than the volume baseline, then a "reduced resource credit RRC" is applied to reduce the base charge. (see RRC)


Acronymn: Apptio TBM Unified Model.

Available Storage

Usable storage not dedicated to a logical volume on a server. Cannot be used until allocated.


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Below the Line

Below the line is defined as income or expense in accounting which have no noticeable effect on company profits in the current period. In Apptio terms, showback Bills of IT are working "Below the Line" because no money is actually changing hands between IT departments that collect costs for Services and the Business Units that consume services.

When we look at Cost Savings decisions that were driven by Apptio, it is important to consider if a cost save is an "Above the Line" save, which affects profitability or a "Below the Line" save which may have reduced consumption but not produced a net savings to the business because no service was retired and no money was really saved.
See Also: Above the Line, Blue Dollar, Green Dollar.


A standard or point of reference against which things may be compared or assessed. It is a comparison only and NOT a statement of whether the variance is good or bad. Any variance is an indicator that further analysis needs to be performed.

For example an IT unit rate of $x/GB of storage is 10% more than a cited external benchmark. Being more than the benchmark does not mean that the higher IT storage cost is a bad thing. What cannot be compared is whether that increase in cost is, for example, because the Business requires redundancy and that ability gives the Business product or service a competitive advantage in the market. Further analysis would have to have been done to see that explanation.

Bill of ITA Bill of IT is a report that customers running Apptio software can generate to communicate the value of their services to business partners showing how much of each technology service they consumed and at what cost. This allows them to shape business demand by demonstrating how technology is consumed by business units and users and where it supports their business capabilities.
Blue Dollars

Green Dollars are real money leaving the company or coming into the company. This can be
used to characterize cost savings for ROI studies.


Example: Several labs used me for nearly 3 years while I was assigned to a field office. My manager got  "blue dollars" for my time and the labs also covered my travel expenses. So while he didn't get a much higher rate of return on my time and his investment in me (green dollars), he did get 100% of my time covered in blue dollars so that I was not a burden on his team.

When justifying Apptio's cost savings abilities, we often cite JPMC as an example where a business unit saved $10 million dollars by shutting down Netware. This is a BLUE dollar save,which doesn't really equate to the company saving $10 million because it is an allocation.

If JPMC were to shut down and decommission the servers, they may save GREEN dollars on electricity, support and maintenance that they no longer have to pay an external vendor to provide.

See also: Green Dollars, Above the Line, Below The Line

BOITSee Bill of IT 
BugA problem with the software.
Business UnitA logical element or segment of a company (such as accounting, production, marketing) representing a specific business function, and a definite place on the organizational chart, under the domain of a manager. Also called department, division, or a functional area.
Business User (BU)

The lowest level role in the Apptio applications. Business users have the fewest permissions.

They can switch between projects, see default shared reports, and edit tables on viewable

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Capitalization or Capex or Capital Expenditure CPAA Capital Expenditure is money spent on the purchase (e.g., servers), creation (e.g., software development project), or improvement (e.g., data center expansion) of an asset. Asset-related spending is reflected on the owner's Balance Sheet, and is not an expense that is reflected on the owner's P&L. A capital expenditure gets capitalized, or booked as an asset, and flows through your income statement as depreciation over a period of time. Capex not only includes hardware and software, but also the costs to deploy them and certain application development costs (e.g. travel costs, labor to build hardware/software/applications, development testing). Capital expenditures guidance is provided by standard accounting practices (GAAP) and is specifically set for the corporation by corporate finance; they are not negotiable within IT. These are items that provide long term functionality, greater than one year, for which accounting rules allow spreading of the cost (thru depreciation) over a set period of time that corresponds with the asset’s useful life. They occur during the onset or beginning of the new functionality (i.e. asset). For example a new server provides computing functionality that typically lasts about 2-3 years. However, corporate finance may choose to depreciate based on 2 years. If they chose to do it based on 5 years, auditing could ask for documentation to substantiate that choice of a standard. Hopefully corporate finance would ask for feedback from IT as to the expected life of a server. You can refer clients to look at SOP 98-1 for specific details about what can be capitalized.
CalcMath being performed on the platform after changes are made to a project.

The need to understand the components of the costs of IT, and to fund the IT organization in the face of unexpected demands from user departments, led to the development of chargeback mechanisms, in which a department gets an internal bill (or "cross-charge" through an internal journal entry) for the costs that are associated to the infrastructure, data transfer, application licenses, training, etc., which the consumer "uses."


Unfortunately, charging is not always based on a direct relationship to utilization and has caused poor relationships between IT and their consumers. This has been caused by the lack of detail as to what constitutes a charge. Charging directly impacts the cost structure of a consumer's bottom line. Below are some models for charging:

  • Notional charging – this is what is called showback, i.e. no journal entry charge is
    involved, so impact to a consumer's bottom line.
  • Tiered subscription – this is where IT defines tiers of service (e.g., gold, silver, bronze
    service levels) and charges the business according to their choice
  • Metered usage – this is a consumption-based allocation of costs
  • Direct plus – charging for direct costs and then providing a “tax” to cover the indirect
  •  Fixed or user cost – this is what we might refer to as “peanut butter spread,” the dividing of costs based on a simple metric such as number of employees or percent of total revenues.`
Chart of Accounts (COA) CPA

The COA is a list of accounts defining each class of items for which money or the equivalent is
spent or received. A simple chart of accounts would fall under standard group headings.


  • SG&A. Technology expenses typically fall under SG&A (below the line) for companies where final products or services are not technology based.
  • COGS. For companies where technology is what they produce, then the costs would fall  under the heading of COGS (above the line). This classification has blurred since many company services, such as on-line banking, technology should be considered a COGS. You will hear terms such as IT COGS, but unless the company specifically classifies IT expenses under COGS, it is most likely contained within SG&A, which means its just an expense of daily operations, NOT a cost of producing the final business product or service


With Apptio, it is relatively easy to shift IT costs between COGS and SG&A to accurately align IT expenses to business services. Shifting cost is accomplished by altering the cost model.


A classification of an asset tracked within a CMDB (or CMS). A component is sub-ordinate to a Product. Components are regarded as an Application (see definition for “Application”).


Supplied by Matt Temple's Definitions document

Configuration Management Database (CMDB

A repository that acts as a data warehouse for information technology (IT) installations. It holds data relating to a collection of IT assets (commonly referred to as configuration items or CIs), as well as to descriptive relationships between such assets.


Supplied by Matt Temple's Definitions document


A component of a model that defines the relationship between two objects. The relationship is an allocation of value from one object to another object. A connector is displayed as a line between objects. In the modeler, a connector is displayed as an arrow between two objects.

Cost Accounting CPA

A method of accounting in which all costs incurred in carrying out an activity or accomplishing a purpose are collected, classified, and recorded. This data is then summarized and analyzed to arrive at a selling price, or to determine where savings are possible.

In contrast to financial accounting which considers money as the measure of economic performance, cost accounting considers money as the economic factor of production.


Read more:

Apptio cost accounting for IT Services provides consumption visibility, exposes levers to
reduce costs, and offers choices that compare levels of service to the associated prices.

Cost pool

A cost pool is a grouping of individual costs, typically by department or service center. Cost allocations are then made from a cost pool. For example, the cost of IT hardware is accumulated in a cost pool and then allocated to those departments using the hardware. In Apptio, the standard cost pools are: Hardware, Software, Telecom, Facilities & Power, Labor, and Outside Services. A cost pool may be split into two or more cost elements.

Cost vs Price

Cost vs. price depends on whether it is from a buyer or seller perspective.
From a buyer perspective:


Cost = What you stand to lose in time, efficiency, problem-solving, etc. if you don’t
consider your return-on-investment.


Price = The sticker price of what you’re buying or the cash you shell out.


For example, tuition (price) is what you pay to attend college, but the price of tuition, plus 4
years of time, books, room & board is the cost that is paid.
From a seller perspective:


Cost is equivalent to TCO of all costs associated with delivering a service over its useful
life. Price is simply what someone is willing to pay for that product or service based on
their perceived value. So price is really more of a demand or consumer phenomenon,
whereas cost comes from the supplier.


For IT, price could include the cost of “planned” service changes or consumption growth and
allow for gradual and consistent changes of what is charged to the business. A "true up"
would occur to have a net zero effect at the end of the fiscal year.


Billing greatly affects behavior if it becomes an actual transfer of monies across corporate
financial books. Otherwise it effects consumption based on what the consumer wants to


Acronym: Create Read Update Delete


Change the Business (CTB). A categorization of IT portfolio spend. Typically refers to IT investments not focused on the operational, run-the-business investements. Can be a more generic representation of Grow-the-Business (GTB) and Transform-the-Business classificiation.


Cost Transparency Foundation is the core application in the Apptio Technology Business Management Suite. Using CTF, you can use your general ledger entries to calculate the costs of running IT and the costs of the applications and services you offer to your organization.


Entity that defines the value being delivered and pays for it. (See End User)

Customer Success

Apptio's professional services organization that supports clients in the initial configuration and on-going support of the Apptio solution.


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/dataProvides information about customer instances. /data is assessable through links on the bottom of instance page or by adding /data after /biit on the URL. Information provided includes the current calculations, metadata on the instance, project settings, the active and idle users, memory usage, and enforcements. The threads page is part of /data and shows the calculations currently in progress.
DAO (Data Access Object)An object that provides an abstract interface to some type of database or other persistence mechanism. By mapping application calls to the persistence layer, DAOs provide some specific data operations without exposing details of the database. This isolation supports the Single responsibility principle. It separates what data accesses the application needs, in terms of domain-specific objects and data types (the public interface of the DAO), and how these needs can be satisfied with a specific DBMS, database schema, etc. (the implementation of the DAO). Although this design pattern is equally applicable to most programming languages, most types of software with persistence needs, and most types of databases, it is traditionally associated with Java EE applications and with relational databases accessed via the JDBC API because of its origin in Sun Microsystems' best practice guidelines for that platform.
Datalink 3An Apptio application that extracts data from disparate systems and loads it into a customer's Apptio instance. It replaces Datalink 1.0 and Datalink 2.0. SnapLogic is a 3rd party ETL product that Apptio used to do this in releases up to R11.2. SnapLogic is being replaced by an internal solution called Datalink 3.0 or DL3.
Data Management System (DMS) Also known as Data Hub. Software for collaborating on gathering, sharing and using data. The term is usually used to refer to the new web-based generation of such products. They can be either platforms for handling lots of different kinds of data, or in verticals specializing in one particular field.
Data Model ApptioSee Model.
Data Transfer Object (DTO) A design pattern used to transfer data between software application subsystems. DTOs are often used in conjunction with data access objects to retrieve data from a database. The difference between data transfer objects and business objects or data access objects is that a DTO does not have any behavior except for storage and retrieval of its own data (accessors and mutators). DTOs are simple objects that should not contain any business logic that would require testing.
Default ReportThe Apptio Studio application generates one default report for each object in a model. In the default reports, the columns are the metrics and the rows are the units.

The allocation of the cost of assets to periods in which the assets are used – matching principle! Accountants spread the cost over the useful life of the asset.. Depreciation does NOT mean the decline in value of an asset! Depreciation is an expense (OpEx). Tangible assets are “depreciated” (e.g. hardware depreciation). In-tangible assets are “amortized” (e.g. software amortization).


Discretionary A discretionary expense is a cost which is not essential for the operation of a business. For example, a business may allow employees to charge certain meal and entertainment costs to the company in order to promote goodwill with employees. Spending associated with supporting new business growth, or change from core business functions. See also nondiscretionary.
DL3 See DataLink 3.
DMZ (Demilitarized Zone) A firewall configuration for securing LANs.
Domain A domain is a workspace dedicated to a single Apptio customer. A domain contains a customer's projects.
Drill down In an Apptio model, a numeric value connected with a data table that is used to establish foundational value (in dollars, unit counts, etc.) for an object in the model. See also: unit driver.
DTO See Data Transfer Object.
Dynamic Publish Project Calculation Setting Project calculation setting which calculates all data and models and reports in a project in a controlled manner. First, it will calculate the transforms, then metrics, then reports. You can monitor the DP calculation progress in /data on the threads page. This is called a background cacher. This is used for environments that require everything to be already loaded into the cache for quick response time. Per recommended use case, all production and stage environments should be set to dynamic publish. Budgeting and forecasting projects use dynamic publish for data entry done in production.
Dynamic Workload ManagementAlso known as Intelligent Workload Management or IWM. Processing resources are dynamically assigned to tasks, or "workloads," based on criteria such as business process priorities (for example, in balancing business intelligence queries against  transaction processing), resource availability, security protocols, or event scheduling, but extends the concept into the structure of individual workloads themselves.


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Elastic Server PoolA way to enable dynamic workload management by leveraging the power of virtualization and cloud computing.
Enforcement Settings

Depending on the setup of instances and projects, certain activities should be allowed in some projects and not in others. You can control what can be done in each project through
enforcement settings. For example, data projects are typically mastered in the stage project and config is typically mastered in the dev project. In r11, the enforcement settings can change after copies, so you should check to be sure the enforcement settings are as desired after project copies.


The options for enforcement settings are:

  • CanEditConfig: Make changes to transforms, models, and metrics
  • CanEditData: Upload new datasets or change editable data
  • AutoOpen: Opens the project after a copy so that the project will calculate
  • CanEditReports: Add, delete, or change reports.
ETL (Extract, Transfer, Load)

A database process used in data warehousing that involves the following:

  • Extracting data from outside sources
  • Transforming the data to fit operational needs, which can include quality levels
  • Loading the data into the end target (database, more specifically, operational data store, data mart or data warehouse)


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Federated identityStandards-based method of sharing and managing identity data and establishing single sign-on across security domains and organizations.
FEWSFront End Web Services
File System Utilization Allocated storage to which data has been written.
Financial Accounting

A field of accounting that treats money as a means of measuring economic performance
instead of as a factor of production. It encompasses the entire system of monitoring and
control of money as it flows in and out of an organization as assets and liabilities, and revenues and expenses.


Financial accounting gathers and summarizes financial data to prepare financial reports such as a balance sheet and an income statement for the organization's management, investors, lenders, suppliers, tax authorities, and other stakeholders.


Read more:


Within the Apptio TBM Suite, financial accounting relates to IT Finance and IT Planning.


First Process Operationalized 

Fixed Asset

An asset that is not consumed or sold during the normal course of business, such as land,
buildings, equipment, machinery, vehicles, leasehold improvements, and other such items.


Fixed assets enable their owner to carry on its operations. In accounting, fixed does not
necessarily mean immovable; any asset expected to last, or be in use for, more than one year is considered a fixed asset. On a balance sheet, these assets are shown at their book value (purchase price less depreciation).

Several standard methods of computing depreciation expense may be used, including fixed percentage, straight line, and declining balance methods. Depreciation expense generally begins when the asset is placed in service.


A process of estimating how much you expect to spend in a given period or for the remainder of a project. Forecasted amounts are generally added to actual expenses in order to determine any variance that is expected from your budget. Forecasts are shorter in length than a budget; they are "mini" budget updates within the fiscal budgeting cycle.


In the Apptio applications, a formula is a line of code that inserts a calculated value into a
table, metric, or model.


A predefined procedure that inserts a calculated value into a table, metric, or model. A function takes input in the form of arguments, performs predefined processing, and returns a single value.


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GAAP - General Accepted Accounting Principles

GAAP is a codification of how CPA firms and corporations prepare and present their business income and expense, assets and liabilities on their financial statements. GAAP is not a single accounting rule, but rather the aggregate of many rules on how to account for various transactions. It provides a common standard in presenting the financial status of a company.

The U.S. Securities and Exchange Commission (SEC) requires that US GAAP be followed in financial reporting by publicly traded companies.

GAAP is slowly being phased out in favor of the International Financial Reporting Standards (IFRS) as global business becomes more pervasive. GAAP applies only to United States financial reporting and thus an American company reporting under GAAP might show different results if it was compared to a British company that uses the International Standards. While there is close similarity between GAAP and the international rules, the differences can lead a financial statement user to believe incorrectly that company A made more money than company B simply because they report using different rules.


General and Administrative

General Ledger

The general ledger or GL is the main accounting record of a business which uses double-entry bookkeeping (debits and credits). It will usually include accounts for such items as current assets, fixed assets, liabilities, revenue and expense items, gains and losses. The listing of the account names contained with the GL is called the chart of accounts (COA). The general ledger should include the date, description and balance or total amount for each account. (Wikipedia) 


See also: Chart of Accounts


Distributed version control and source code management (SCM) system. Free software
distributed under GNU General Public License version 2.


A web-based hosting service for software development projects that use the Git revision
control system. Paid software.


Grow the Business. One of three categories for analyzing IT investments from a portfolio view. GTB is about increasing revenues and profits from existing customer segments and product offerings. IT enables growth by providing capacity where and when it is needed to meet the company's growth. It can also increase growth through new revenue streams based on new services and innovation.


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HadoopApache Hadoop is an open-source software framework that supports data-intensive distributed applications, licensed under the Apache v2 license. It supports running applications on large clusters of commodity hardware. Hadoop was derived from Google's MapReduce and Google File System (GFS) papers. The Hadoop framework transparently provides both reliability and data motion to applications. Hadoop implements a computational paradigm named MapReduce, where the application is divided into many small fragments of work, each of which may be executed or re-executed on any node in the cluster. In addition, it provides a distributed file system that stores data on the compute nodes, providing very high aggregate bandwidth across the cluster. Both map/reduce and the distributed file system are designed so that node failures are automatically handled by the framework. It enables applications to work with thousands of computation-independent computers and petabytes of data. The entire Apache Hadoop “platform” is now commonly considered to consist of the Hadoop kernel, MapReduce and Hadoop Distributed File System (HDFS), as well as a number of related projects – including Apache Hive, Apache HBase, and others. Hadoop is written in the Java programming language and is an Apache top-level project being built and used by a global community of
HCHeadcount. The number of people in an organization.
HW or H/W

Hardware refers to IT equipment or fixed assets such as desktops, servers, storage, network equipment, etc..

From a financial perspective, the hardware cost pool includes hardware depreciation (from
CapEx investments), hardware expense (e.g. monitors, keyboards, cables, memory, spare parts, etc.), and maintenance & support.

hypervisorA program that manages two or more operating systems on a single server. The hypervisor controls the resources and processor on the server, ensuring each operating system has the resources it needs to perform as needed.
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IdentifierA column in an object's unit table that defines the category that the object reports on. The
identifier also specifies how data is grouped in an object's unit table. The identifier indicates the direct mapping of units from another object.
IaaSInfrastructure as a Service is the hardware is provided by an external provider and managed for you IaaS provides all the infrastructure to support web apps, including storage, web and application servers, and networking resources. Examples include servers and storage, data center physical plant/building
InferenceA set of relationships among data/table columns uploaded into an Apptio instance. The
relationships are discovered by Apptio's Inference engine. A relationship between two or more columns is established when the columns are configured for discovery and there is matching data in both columns. The relationship is individually called a concept and each concept may have one or more concept links. Each concept link represents a unique combination of any two columns in the relationship and contains data match information between the two columns.
Indirect CostsCosts not directly related to the principal activity of the business.
ITPThe Apptio IT Planning application, also known as Planning. See Planning.

IT Resource Tower or IT Resource Tower and Sub-Towers.


IT Resource Towers (and Sub-Towers) are a standardized way of looking at common
infrastructure functions that perform certain types of work and are responsible for specific
outcomes. Examples used in the Apptio applications:


  • Resource Towers: Compute, Storage, Data Network, Application, IT Management
  • Sub-Towers: Compute – Wintel, Compute – Linux; Data Network – WAN, Data Network –
    LAN, etc.)

The Apptio applications use IT Resource towers to aggregate the TCO of direct costs coming into these functions including personnel, hardware, software, facilities, outside services, and other costs. These are effective in maintaining a consistent way of tracking and comparing
costs over time even though the IT organization structure (and related cost centers) will likely change. It all provides a means to enable peer comparison through benchmarking.


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JARAn archive file format typically used to aggregate many Java class files and associated
metadata and resources (text, images and so on) into one file to distribute application software or libraries on the Java platform.
JDBCA Java-based data access technology (Java Standard Edition platform) from Oracle
Corporation. This technology is an API for the Java programming language that defines how a client may access a database. It provides methods for querying and updating data in a database. JDBC is oriented towards relational databases. A JDBC-to-ODBC bridge enables connections to any ODBC-accessible data source in the JVM host environment.
JettyA pure Java-based HTTP server and Java Servlet container. The web server is used in products such as ActiveMQ, Alfresco, Apache Geronimo, Apache Maven, Google App Engine, Eclipse, FUSE, Twitter's Streaming API and Zimbra. Jetty is also the server in open source projects such as Lift, Eucalyptus, Red5 and Hadoop. Jetty supports the latest Java Servlet API (with JSP support) as well as protocols SPDY and WebSocket.
JIRAA bug-tracking system produced by Atlassian, the maker of Confluence. It supports a number of add-ons (e.g.: Greenhopper that allows for Agile activity tracking). 
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KeyOne of four supported column types that can be assigned to the columns of a data set. A key establishes a relationship to all other tables in the project that have the same key.
KPIKey Performance Indicator. A statistic about an important area of the business. Examples:
spend per employee, cost year-to-date, labor headcount.
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LabelIn Apptio Studio, one of four supported column types that can be assigned to the columns of a data set. Labels are not included in the Inference Map.

The “Logical Unit Number”


This is an ID of a place on the frame that can be used for Storage.


Usually present in data, and represents an assignment layer between physical devices and logical volumes.

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Materialized viewA database object that contains the results of a query. For example, it may be a local copy of data located remotely, or may be a subset of the rows and/or columns of a table or join result, or may be a summary based on aggregations of the data in a table. Materialized views, which store data based on remote tables, are also known as snapshots. A snapshot can be redefined as a materialized view.
MercurialA cross-platform, distributed revision control tool and source control management (SCM)
system. Free software distributed under GNU General Public License version 2.
MeteringThe practice of measuring usage for the purpose of charging an associated usage fee.
Metric (Apptio applications)

A calculation that provides a measurement for a model. Typical metrics include: cost, budget, and utilization. Apptio supports the following types of metrics: costing, label, numeric, pricing, and quantity.

There are two classes of metrics:

  • Modeled. A modeled metric is a model.
  • Calculated. A calculated metric is a new column in a unit table. Calculated metrics apply
    for the entire project.
Metric (finance)

There are three types of metrics:


  • Efficiency
  • Service Delivery
  • Business Transformation


Efficiency Metrics
Fixed-to-Variable: Monitor your fixed-to-variable cost ratio and ensure it is in line with the
needs of your business. Keep in mind that with this ratio, lower is not always better. For some organizations, especially those with economies of scale, a higher proportion of fixed costs may be advantageous. Businesses that experience more significant organizational changes, especially reductions in staff, generally benefit from a higher proportion of variable costs.


Direct vs. Indirect Cost Ratio: When determining direct vs. indirect, you must answer one question first: to what degree are your costs (primarily) allocated? The relative proportion of your indirect costs to your direct costs indicates the degree to which your business employs shared resources.


In organizations that have not completed the transformation to a service delivery model, the objects of allocation are generally business units or cost centers. For example, IT
organizations in this model may allocate the cost of a server to the business unit (cost center) to which it is dedicated. In organizations that are aligned to service delivery, the objects of allocation are generally their services. Resources that are dedicated to a business unit or a service would be described as a direct cost. This metric, along with utilization metrics, can quickly identify opportunities for cost reduction. In particular, look for direct costs that are associated with poorly utilized resources.


Capex to Opex: This gives you an indicator of how much of your expense represents an
investment for the business. Since these investments create useful assets, a higher ratio
means you are investing more of your money in long-term value. However, a higher ratio also contributes to a higher fixed cost structure, as fixed asset depreciation is a fixed cost. (On the other hand, renting capacity through service providers represents opex, but generally provides a much more variable cost structure.) Regardless, there is no magic number for the right level of investment; it depends on your business goals.


Capex to Asset: compares your annual capex budget with the purchase value (original value at time of creation) of your assets that are fully depreciated or will be fully depreciated within the planning horizon. For example, if you have fully depreciated servers with a combined purchase price of $10 million, and another $2 million in servers that will fully depreciate in the next fiscal year, your capex budget for server refresh should be based on $12 million. Studies have shown that failing to invest adequate capital back into IT generally costs more in the long run. This ratio is crucial to maintaining the long-term cost-effectiveness of your IT organization. For a discussion of IT capex-to-asset ratio, see: Buchanan, Stewart and Jack Heine. “Use Financial Sustainability Metrics That Optimize the IT Asset Portfolio to Optimize Cost.” Rep. no. G00171629. Gartner, 26 Oct. 2009.


Budget vs Actuals and Forecast: By identifying variances early, you can take prescriptive action. At a minimum, you must inform stakeholders who are directly impacted by variances, such as the business units that will be charged for them.


See: Gartner. “Gartner Says Changing the Cost Structure of IT Will Become a Business
Imperative for Most CIOs.” Gartner, 14 Oct. 2008. Web. 15 Dec. 2010.


Service Delivery Metrics

Performance is measured at the service-level, not the technology component level. Services (and service-levels) must be defined and their costs determined.
TCO by Business Service: Monitor the unit or per-user TCO trends for each of your business services. In general, the unit costs should fall over time as hardware depreciates and license costs are fully amortized, along with other benefits such as reduced operating costs. They should also fall as more users adopt the service, resulting in a broader distribution of fixed costs. In some cases, TCO will rise as the result of major new releases and upgrades.


Operating Profit and Margin: is total revenue less operating expenditures. Operating profit
and margin depend on quantifying the value of your IT services in financial terms, which few IT


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Net Profitability

Net profitability or Net profit, also referred to as the bottom line, net income, or net earnings, is a measure of the profitability of a venture after accounting for all costs. All costs would include IT costs.


Net profitability is the discipline of making IT expenses have a full P&L impact to business unit expenses. This makes business units very interested in reducing their charges, and turns a "Blue Dollar" view of chargeback into a "Green Dollar" view of chargeback.

If IT costs are charged to internal consumers based on actual consumption and costs, then changes the consumer makes to consumption would have a direct impact to that consumer's bottom line. When IT costs are not charged to business units based on actual consumption and cost, then impacts are not seen as a true bottom line impact.


A non-discretionary cost is one that is not completely controllable by you. Typically you may be able to exert a little influence on such costs by understanding and manipulating consumption patterns but you are not able to unilaterally completely eliminate the cost from your cost-base.

Regulatory and compliance requirements are non-discretionary investments that a company may not normally pursue. See also discretionary.


In Apptio Studio, one of four supported column types that can be assigned to the columns of a data set. Numeric columns contain number-formatted integers or real numbers.


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In the Apptio Modeler, an object is a component of a model that categorizes or groups data
together. An object represents a financial or organizational entity to be analyzed in a model. An object is defined by its unit and its value is determined by the sum of its unit drivers. An object's data is represented by its unit table.


In the modeler, objects are represented by icons.

Apptio supplies one default report for each object.

Operating Expenditure or Opex

Opex is an going cost for running a product, business, or system. Opex occurs over the life of an asset or service and constitutes upkeep of the current functionality or the day-to-day operations. IT costs are typically part of selling and G & A (general & administrative) costs at a corporate level.


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Physical serverA standalone physical server running a single operating system image. The physical server typically runs one or more IT or business applications or services. It is not hosting other operating system images or otherwise acting as a hypervisor.

Also known as ITP. An Apptio application that is used by IT departments to budget for their
services, technology towers and projects. It also allows them to collaborate internally and with business leaders to define resource and funding requirements to support business objectives.

It enables IT budget owners, decision makers, and finance to calculate and manage your
services-based unit demand with your budget and forecast. It includes financial planning (plan editing and approval, plan versions and comparisons), collaboration, Unit-based Planning,  Capital Planning, and Combined Asset Register.


Platform as a service (PaaS) is a cloud computing model that delivers applications over the Internet. In a PaaS model, a cloud provider delivers hardware and software tools -- usually those needed for application development -- to its users as a service. Examples include:  Development tools, database management, operating systems, servers and storage, networking firewalls, data center plants/buildings 

Power UserIn the Apptio applications, the second highest level role. Power users have all of the
permissions of admins, except configuring time, managing users, and managing roles.
Pre-CalcCalculating a project under dynamic publish.
Preferred Vendor

Preferred vendors have been investigated by a company and approved. Often, procurement and contracting requirements have been met and the appropriate agreements, terms and conditions may be in place. Volume purchasing commitments may be established for better pricing and additional services. Vendors must often apply to enter a company’s preferred program.

See also: Stratigic Vendor, Transactional Vendor


Reports can be indexed to improve performance. However, the reports do not calculate based on every slicer or drill. You can enable pre-load in the Ribbon bar.

PriceQuantity of payment or compensation given by one party to another in return for goods or

A collection of Applications managed by Technology. A Product is not equivalent to an Application Family.


Supplied by Matt Temple's Definitions document

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Quality of Service

The gap between what the customer expects and what they get. If they receive more than what they expect, then the quality of service is perceived as high. Likewise, if the customer gets less than they expect, then the quality of service is perceived as low. Qualitative measures come from defining the service from a customer's perspective and creating a delivery model that will meet that expectation.



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Raw Storage 

100% of the capacity of all drives in the storage frame.


See: Whitespace, Usable Storage

Report Component ApptioA chart, table, or other graphical element in a report. The charts and tables present data
provided by data sets, metrics, and models.

difference between the cost of a service and the price of a service. Business units consume services based on published prices that are typically set at the beginning of the year, based on an upfront estimate of volumes and expenses.Over the course of the year expenses and volumes will differ from the plan so the residual represents the gap between planned price and actual price.


Different organizations will account for residuals in different ways: monthly, quarterly,


The process of reconciling residuals is often called a "True Up," "Clawback" or a "Sweep Out."


See also: Cost vs Price

Resource Tower

In the Apptio applications, a resource tower is the aggregation of the TCO for IT specific
services. Often referred to as "IT Resource Towers". Synonymous with Technical Services or IT

Services. It is the lowest IT unit where volumes are recorded and used. It also lays the
foundation for demand/supply management within IT. Example IT Resource towers include: Data Center, Data Network, Compute, Applications, etc. which are further broken down into "sub-towers" that reflect related services within the resource tower. For example: Data Network is broken down into Core LAN, WAN, etc. while Compute is broken down by Wintel, Unix, etc.


In the Apptio TBM Suite, a role is a set of permissions that can be assigned to users. By saving a report to a role, you can make that report visible to users who have been assigned that role.

Apptio supports four default roles, from highest to lowest permission levels: admin, power
user, view only, business user. Users with the Admin role can create new roles.

RRC - Reduced Resource Costs

(Pronounced “Rooks”.) Also known as a "reduced resource credit". An RRC is an adjustment to a service contract based on the decreased volume of services performed by the vendor.

See also: ARC

RTB or Run the Business

Run the Business; one of three categories for analyzing IT investments from a portfolio view.

RTB is the ongoing operational investments in IT to "keep the lights on". It provides current
services with a focus on efficiency and balancing cost and quality. "Keep the lights on" can be a misleading term since there could be identifiable services currently operating that have nothing to do with keeping the business active. This should lead to the need to truly identify the levels of criticality of RtB investments to discern whether they really are necessary or no one ever made the decision to shut the service down. This is another great reason for TBM since 


Portfolio Management analysis would review areas in RtB to optimize cost.

Run Rate

The financial performance of a company based on extrapolating current results over a certain period of time. For example, if IT's current monthly spend was $1M, then they would say their monthly "run rate" was $1M.


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Software as a Service - an application that is hosted and provided by a service provider.

The customer does not need to license the software, does not need to invest in servers and other equipment to run the application. The application is accessed remotely via an internet connection. Examples include: Apptio's TBM Solution,


Within a technology context: a technology enabled activity performed to the order of or benefit of someone else. Key point is that it is for someone else so the service must be communicated in the language that the user understands. A service is viewed differently by customers and end users.

Customer: People who commission, pay for, and help define the service and agree to the
service levels.

End user:  A person who uses the service on daily.


Concepts to remember:

  • A customer is usually an end user, but an end user is not necessarily a customer.
  • Customers do not buy products, they buy the satisfaction of particular needs. "People
    don't buy quarter-inch drills. They buy quarter-inch holes."
Service Catalog

A listing of the services offered by an IT organization. Each service within the catalog typically includes:

  • A description of the service
  • Time frames or service level agreement for fulfilling the service
  • Who is entitled to request/view the service including costs (if any)
  • How to fulfill the service including points of contact
Service costing

A method of costing used to find per unit cost of operations or services. Apptio also uses the term to refer to canned reports or templates for customers specific to the data being modeled.

Apptio IT Cost Transparency uses visual modeling and self-service analytics to transform an IT department's general ledger cost data into the true, fully-burdened costs of your services, technology towers, projects and other important dimensions of IT. It helps IT departments
control costs, better align expenditures to value, and invest more in innovation and agility.

Service Portfolio

A collection of services with common characteristics such as:

  • Business goal
  • Measures of success or value
SLA or Service Level Agreement

A service-level agreement is a negotiated agreement between two parties, where one is the customer and the other is the service provider. This can be a legally binding formal or an informal "contract" (for example, internal department relationships). Operational-level
agreements or OLAs, are used by internal support groups or services to support consumer services with SLAs. The purpose of the OLA is to help ensure that the underpinning activities that are performed by a number of support team components are clearly aligned to provide the intended SLA.

Service Taxonomy

a framework used to organize and create a hierarchy of Services into parent containers of which labels the supported clients can understand and be empowered to have discussions and make decisions about. A taxonomy has between 3-4 layers. The beginning point of a taxonomy is the Service Offering level and rolls into higher levels within the taxonomy. Contributing elements to Services Offerings are outside of the scope of a Service Taxonomy and should be managed elsewhere with the understanding they should ultimately map to a defined Service Offering that is tracked within the Service Taxonomy. Other Services not represented in the Service Taxonomy may be represented elsewhere, but only those represented in the Service Taxonomy will be exposed to Technology clients.


NOTE: The TBM Council's service taxonomy is available here. Evergreen Systems has published some decks regarding “Service Taxonomy Essentials” here and here at SlideShare.


Supplied by Matt Temple's Definitions document


Senior Leadership Team


An amount of money paid for a particular purpose or over a particular period of time.

SSO -Single Sign On

Gathering credentials from a user once and authenticating to multiple disparate systems
without prompting the user for additional authentication information.

All strategic vendors are also preferred vendors. The difference is that there are additional
attributes that are of value to the company that may include: key buyer-supplier relationship, single source, joint technologies, legacy tooling, sustainability goals and other differentiating or important characteristics. When a company needs products or services, it turns to strategic and preferred vendors first.

See also: Preferred Vendor, Transactional Vendor


A sub-classification of an asset tracked within CMDB (or CMS) and sub-ordinate to a Component.

Supplier (Vendor, Partner)

Supplier is the generic term for 3rd party suppliers whereas Vendor is a tactical relationship and Partner is a strategic relationship.

SW or S/W or Software

Computer software, or just software, is a collection of computer programs and related data
that provides the instructions for telling a computer what to do and how to do it. The term encompasses both applications and software licenses. The table below compares application software and system software.


From a financial perspective, the software cost pool includes software amortization (from
capitalized application development projects), software expense (e.g. software purchases
<$1k), licensing and maintenance & support. However, in the Apptio service costing model, the applications object is an IT Resource Tower and includes the rollup up of the software cost pools from all application software licenses that are required to make the application usable by end users. System software costs, likewise, are part of the software cost pool and roll up into the ITRT they support such as Data Center, Storage, Server, etc.

Sweating the Assets

"Sweating the assets" is variously defined as cutting costs, virtualizing, or getting "as much use
as possible out of what you already possess." The first definition leads to the reductionist
approach: cut services, resources, and/or staff. In today's market, compensation is often a major portion, if not the largest portion, of an organization's budget, standing out as a likely target to cut. Some institutions are thus undertaking reductions in force in IT organizations and elsewhere. But Hitachi's Hu Yoshida sounds a note of warning about cutbacks: "'Sweating your assets' may help you survive the downturn, but it can work against you when the recovery happens and you are caught short."

Three years used to be a standard life span for an office PC. Notice how you've had yours for more like four or five? It's called "sweating the assets." As tech budgets decrease, companies are making their machines work overtime. Agilent CEO Ned Barnholt says his chipmanufacturer clients now push their testing equipment to run at 90% to 95% capacity, vs. the old standard of 80%. (This revved-up rate is more cost efficient, but some cite a danger of longer-term performance declines.) The Gartner Group says financial companies are also sweating, using up to 80% of available space on servers, vs. the 30% to 50% that was acceptable a few years ago. Through a complicated maneuver called "pooling," companies can now do that while avoiding the choice between savings or speed.


The act of reconciling residuals that represent the published rates and volumes to the actual usage of IT Services on a periodic basis.

Sweep-outs can be performed on a monthly, quarterly, or annually.
See also: True-Up, Residual


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In an Apptio model, a tag is a filter applied to a unit driver. You can apply tags to unit drivers that you create, so that in models where objects have more than one driver, you can roll up only the unit drivers that share a certain tag. Tagging a unit driver creates a metric, so you can filter the model. Tags force a significant amount of additional calculations, and can affect performance. Use them judiciously.

A typical application for unit driver tags is in a model where each object contains drivers
representing both fixed and variable costs. The drivers that represent fixed costs could have the tag FIXED, while the variable ones could be tagged VARIABLE. You can then roll up the fixed and variable costs separately.


Technology Business Management - processes whereby IT measures its performance and alignment with business goals and strategies. Includes functions around financial, supply, demand and governance.


A discipline for managing the business of IT through an integrated view of technology cost,
performance, supply and demand.

TBMAWithin the context of the Apptio TBM Suite, a Technology Business Management Analyst (TBM Analyst) - power user.
TBMO Technology Business Management Office. The TBM Office is typically organized into two roles: The TBM Program Director who leads the office and TBM Support who drive regular activities. The TBM Program Director is responsible for the overall strategy of the TBM Solution. The TBM Support is comprised of 1 or 2 people and is responsible for the ongoing maintenance of the TBM Solution
TCO or Total Cost of OwnershipIncludes the following: hardware, software, labor, facilities, data center, external services,
both capital (thru depr) and operating costs and direct/indirect (shared) costs.
Includes other system operations software if the software is part of the base operating
requirements since the server will not work without the software.

In an Apptio model, a template is a property of an object in a model that identifies a template assigned to the object. Templates often are accompanied by data sets, metrics, and reports.

When you assign a template to an object, Apptio automatically creates the accompanying data sets, metrics, and reports. You assign a stereotype to an object at the time you add the object to a model.

Time UnitAlso known as a time period. In an Apptio project, a period of time that specifies the
granularity for time-based calculations. The supported time units are: months, quarters, and years.
Transactional Vendor

All remaining suppliers of products and services are considered transactional. Depending on the procurement controls in place, staff may only be allowed to purchase from transactional suppliers if the products or services are not offered through the company’s strategic or preferred vendors.

See also: Preferred Vendor, Strategic Vendor


The act of reconciling residuals that represent the published rates and volumes to the actual usage of IT services on a periodic basis. Can be performed monthly, quarterly, or yearly.

See also: Sweep-Out, Residuals

TTB or Transform the Business

Transform the Business; one of three categories for analyzing IT investments from a portfolio
TTB value is about strategic business alignement and enabling new business capability.


The TTB investments help the business serve new customer segments, offer new products and deliver new services. Many CIOs want to shift the allocation of their IT budget from operational RTB (Run the Business) spend to more impactful TTB spend.


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UnitIn the Apptio applications, a unit is a value in an identifier column. For example, if the
identifier for an object in a model is Products, the units would be the product names in the
Products column. The object's unit table contains one row for each unit, with each row in the unit table containing the sum of all of rows for each unit in the source data set.
Unit DriverIn an Apptio model, a unit driver is a calculated data value, typically determined by a formula, that determines the value of an object. A unit driver pulls data set information into an object. A change in the value of the unit driver changes the value shown in the object, which propagates throughout the model based on the relationships that have been defined between the objects.
Unit TableIn the Apptio applications, a unit table is a table that represents the data associated with an object. A unit table contains references to one or more data sets.
Unused StorageAllocated storage not yet written to
Usable Storage

Capacity of a frame that can be allocated to filesystems. aka "Total Capacity


Apptio reports on the storage elements of interest: all components of Usable Storage.


See: Available and Allocated Storage

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Variable CostsCosts that change in proportion to the activity of the business.

The ITIL Service Strategy book describes utility and warranty as forming the basis of value for IT service consumers. Simply put, according to ITIL, get utility and warranty right, and you are providing the intended value, which means you have a high quality service with satisfied customers.


UTILITY: The ITIL glossary adds that utility is "[f]unctionality offered by a product or service to meet a particular need. Utility is often summarized as 'what it does'."
WARRANTY: ITIL describes warranty as " promise or guarantee that a product or service will meet its agreed requirements" and as "derived from the positive effect of being available when needed, in sufficient capacity, and dependably in terms of continuity and security."

Customer Measures of Value:

  • Functionality
  • Ease of Use
  • Performance - supports my needs
  • Reliability- is it available when needed
  • Agility - how fast to fulfill
  • Price - competitive with alternatives

3rd party software made by HP. The grid-based, column-oriented, Vertica Analytic database is designed to manage large, fast-growing volumes of data and provide very fast query performance when used for data warehouses and other query-intensive applications. Its design features include:


  • Column-oriented storage organization, which increases performance of sequential record access at the expense of common transactional operations such as single record retrieval, updates, and deletes.
  • Out-of-place updates and hybrid storage organization, which increase the performance of queries, insertions, and loads, but at the expense of updates and deletes.
  • Compression, which reduces storage costs and I/O bandwidth. High compression is possible because columns of homogeneous data types are stored together and because updates to the main store are batched.
  • Shared nothing architecture, which reduces system contention for shared resources and allows gradual degradation of performance in the face of hardware failure.
View Only

In the Apptio TBM Suite, View Only is the second lowest level of role. Users with the View Only role can see all projects and all shared and role reports. They can drill down on reports and edit tables on viewable reports. They can also view models and the inference map.

Virtual instance

An operating system image that is hosted on a hypervisor (or multiple clustered hypervisors).

The virtual instance runs one or more IT or business applications or services.

Virtualization options

Physical – A standalone physical server running a single operating system image. The
physical server typically runs one or more IT or business applications or services. It is not
hosting other operating system images or otherwise acting as a hypervisor.


Virtual – An operating system image that is hosted on a hypervisor (or multiple clustered
hypervisors). The virtual instance runs one or more IT or business applications or services.

Private cloud – A dedicated, elastic, scalable virtualized environment available to internal
users (as opposed to public cloud). The private cloud provides virtual instances that run oneor more IT or business applications or services. This is differentiated from the “Virtual”
servers by the automated provisioning and related capabilities.


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Whitespace Storage 

Raw storage associated with frame overhead; cannot be allocated to a server/file system.


Whitespace is always incorporated into sunk Storage costs. It gets allocated per the strategy governing Usable Storage.

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YTDYear-to-Date. The cumulative value from the beginning of the fiscal year to the current date.
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