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Glossary of Terms and Acronyms

Sorting Through the Alphabet Soup

Sitecore has its own set of terms, acronyms, and shorthand that can be confusing for newcomers and veterans alike. This glossary attempts to cover as many terms as possible.

This list is alphabetical. It will be updated regularly, so check back often.

Term or Acronym Description Related
The Client

The official name of Sitecore's administration backend. This includes all functions for managing content, media files, and most CMS settings.

Content Author

Any user who creates, edits, or otherwise manages content in Sitecore.

Content Editor

A tree-based interface for managing all content, media, and website settings in Sitecore. Accessible via the Launchpad or the Desktop in the Sitecore Client.

Content Delivery (CD)

Also referred to as "content delivery server." A web server dedicated to serving content from Sitecore, typically from the Web database only. Multiple CD servers are used to scale Sitecore horizontally.

Content Management (CM)

Also referred to as "content management server." A web server dedicated to creating, editing, and managing content in Sitecore. This server provides Content Authors and administrators access to the Sitecore Client.

Definition item

An item in Sitecore that ties a Sitecore entity to an external entity (such as code). For example, a Rendering definition item (/sitecore/Layouts/Renderings) defines all the fields that Sitecore needs to reference and use the relevant code behind that rendering.

Habitat

A sample Sitecore implemenation (built in Visual Studio) that follows Helix implementation guidelines. This is a sample project for developers to help learn Helix practices and principles.

Helix

A set of practices, principles, and guidelines - in the form of online documentation - for implementing a Sitecore solution. This is Sitecore's official architecture recommendation for developers.

Item

The core building block of Sitecore entities, including content, layouts, renderings, media, setting. Represented

Launchpad

Since Sitecore 8.0, the Launchpad has been the default interface for users upon logging in. It is essentially a list of shortcuts to common Sitecore Client applications (such as the Content Editor, Experience Editor, Marketing Control Panel, etc.).

Layout

A Sitecore layout acts as a "master" page (similar to master pages in ASP.NET Webforms or layout views in ASP.NET MVC) and is assigned to the presentation layer of an Item. An Item can have one Layout per Device (Default, Print, Mobile, etc.). A Layout definition item in Sitecore is tied to either a Webforms Master file or an MVC layout view.

Team Development for Sitecore (TDS Classic)

A third-party tool by Hedgehog Development, LLC that provides item serialization to and from Sitecore. Also provides package deployment, template code generation, and other quality-of-life features for Sitecore developers.

"Team Development for Sitecore" is an umbrella term for multiple products by Hedgehog, so "TDS Classic" is now used to refer to the original "TDS" product.

Web Forms For Marketers (WFFM)

A Sitecore module that enables Content Authors to build HTML forms inside Sitecore using a graphical interface. Also provides storage of form data.

Unicorn

A third-party tool for serializing Sitecore items to files on disk (and deserializing files to items in Sitecore). This allows Sitecore definition items and content to be moved between Sitecore databases via version control.