A network adapter is a logical or physical component of a network system at which the system connects to a network. IP Availability Manager performs connectivity analysis and IP Performance Manager performs performance analysis on the following network adapter object types:

  • Port — A point where the physical connection to a network segment is made. For example, an Ethernet segment is connected to an Ethernet switch at one of the switch’s ports. A port may have a Media Access Control (MAC) address associated with it.

    IP Availability Manager and IP Performance Manager separate ports into two groups: trunk ports and access ports. An access port is any port that provides a connection for end users or node devices, such as routers or servers.

    A trunk port is a port that interconnects switches. A trunk port is a member of all the VLANs that exist on the switch and carry traffic for all those VLANs between the switches. All the other ports are access ports. Access ports are assigned to a single VLAN and provide a connection for end users or node devices, such as a router or server.


    By default, IP Performance Manager monitors trunk ports and also access ports (as long as the system to which the access port is connected is managed). However, if you so choose, you can enforce a management policy that manages access ports, as described in the VMware Smart Assurance IP Management Suite Configuration Guide.

  • Interface — A point where the physical connection to a network is made. An interface may have a MAC address, an IP address, or both. For example, a host uses an Ethernet interface to connect to an Ethernet segment.

  • Subinterface — A logical division of a physical interface. A physical interface can be divided into one or more subinterfaces. For example, in a typical Frame Relay or ATM network, a physical interface is configured with multiple virtual circuits and each virtual circuit is associated with a subinterface.


    Subinterface objects are instances of the Interface class.