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> Chapter 32 - Virtual Domains > Virtual Domains Overview

Virtual Domains Overview

Virtual domains (VDOMs) are a method of dividing a FortiGate unit into two or more virtual units that function as multiple independent units. VDOMs can provide separate firewall policies and, in NAT/Route mode, completely separate configurations for routing and VPN services for each connected network or organization.

This chapter will cover the basics of VDOMs, how they change your FortiGate unit, and how to work with VDOMs.

VDOMs let you split your physical FortiGate unit into multiple virtual units. The resulting benefits range from limiting Transparent mode ports to simplified administration, to reduced space and power requirements.

note icon In FortiOS 5.4.1, multiple VDOM support is disabled when Cooperative Security Fabric is enabled.

When VDOMs are disabled on any FortiGate unit, there is still one VDOM active: the root VDOM. It is always there in the background. When VDOMs are disabled, the root VDOM is not visible but it is still there.

The root VDOM must be there because the FortiGate unit needs a management VDOM for management traffic among other things. It is also why when you enable VDOMs, all your configuration is preserved in the root VDOM-because that is where you originally configured it.

This section includes: