VMware ESXi is a type 1 hypervisor that is used to create and manage virtual machines (VMs) on a single physical server. It is a bare-metal hypervisor, which means that it runs directly on the host’s hardware, providing a high level of performance and security for virtualized environments.

ESXi is a key component of VMware’s vSphere virtualization platform and provides the foundation for many of its features, such as live migration (vMotion), high availability, and disaster recovery. ESXi also supports a wide range of hardware platforms, including x86-64 servers from major manufacturers such as Dell, HP, and Lenovo.

One of the key features of ESXi is its support for virtual hardware, which allows VMs to access the underlying hardware resources of the host in a more efficient manner. This allows for better performance and better use of the host’s resources. ESXi also supports hardware-assisted virtualization features such as Intel VT-x and AMD-V, which further improves the performance of virtualized environments.

ESXi also provides a powerful command-line interface (CLI) and a comprehensive set of APIs that can be used to automate and manage virtualized environments. This allows for the integration of ESXi with other tools and platforms, such as cloud management platforms and automation software.

Another major feature of ESXi is its support for different types of storage, including local storage, shared storage, and storage area networks (SANs). This allows for the creation of flexible and scalable storage solutions for virtualized environments.

In summary, VMware ESXi is a powerful, high-performance hypervisor that provides the foundation for many of VMware’s virtualization features. It is widely used in enterprise environments and is a key component of many private and hybrid cloud deployments.