In open systems, a virtual terminal (VT) is an application service that:
- Allows host terminals on a multi-user network to interact with other hosts regardless of terminal type and characteristics,
- Allows remote log-on by local area network managers for the purpose of management,
- Allows users to access information from another host processor for transaction processing,
- Serves as a backup facility.
ITU-T defines a virtual terminal protocol based on the OSI application layer protocols. However, the virtual terminal protocol is not widely used on the Internet.
- Terminal emulator for an application program that provides access to virtual terminals
- Pseudo terminal for the software interface that provides access to virtual terminals
- Virtual console for an analogous concept that provides several local consoles