This section presents the basic terms used throughout the documentation.
Accepted device - An authorized device that can connect to the Mender server and receive software updates.
Artifact - An archive containing everything needed for an update of a device, including the Artifact Payload itself and metadata such as signatures. See the documentation on Artifact for more information.
Artifact Name - A human-readable string uniquely describing an Artifact, used by UI and API for identification purposes.
Artifact Payload - Actual data installed on a device, stored inside a Mender Artifact. It could be a rootfs image, package, container, or other. See the documentation on Artifact for more information.
Authentication Set - A combination of an identity and public key for a device, determining if a given device is allowed to check for- and apply software updates from the Mender server. A given device identity can have multiple Authentication sets and each can be in one of the following states, where only one can be accepted at a given time:
Binary delta - The binary difference between two filesystem images. See the documentation on Delta updates for more information.
Board integration - The low-level integration required to enable system updates with Mender on a board. Often includes OS boot loader and storage integration and requires customization based on the hardware and OS.
Deployment - The process of delivering software to devices. It consists of at least a group of devices and an Artifact name.
Device - A single unit that is able to connect to the Mender server, usually an independent product. Represented on the server by its identity and authentication data.
Device ID - A single string uniquely identifying a device in the Mender server, used in APIs to specify an individual device. See the documentation on Identity for more information.
Device type - The type of device, used to ensure compatibility between the hardware and software. See the documentation on Artifact for more information.
Mender Hub Integration(s) - A contribution on Mender Hub of a Mender Board integration for a specific board.
Mender Server - An application implementing Mender API, and the web UI, providing updates to devices.
Organization - A single customer environment in the Mender server. Also known as a Tenant. Note that multi-tenancy is only supported in Mender Enterprise.
Pending device - A device that has already sent an authorization request to the Mender server and is not yet authorized through preauthorization or user authorization.
Preauthorized device - A device given by authorization set, that will change into "accepted" state automatically when it requests authorization.
Reference board - A board officially supported by Mender, used as a reference when porting to new boards.
Rejected device - A device that has already sent an authorization request to the Mender server, which has been explicitly rejected by the user. A device in this state is not allowed to communicate with the Mender server and will not receive any updates.
Release - A set of one or more Artifacts with the same Artifact name. Used by the Mender server to assign the right Artifact to a given Device based on software and hardware compatibility.