The interaction between vitamin D and osteoblasts is complex. In the current review we will give an overview of the current knowledge of the vitamin D endocrine system in osteoblasts. The presence of the vitamin D receptor in osteoblasts enables direct effects of 1α,25dihydroxyvitamin D3 (1α,25D3) on osteoblasts, but the magnitude of the effects is subject to the presence of many other factors. Vitamin D affects osteoblast proliferation, as well as differentiation and mineralization, but these effects vary with the timing of treatment, dosage and origin of the osteoblasts. Vitamin D effects on differentiation and mineralization are mostly stimulatory in human and rat osteoblasts, and inhibitory in murine osteoblasts. Several genes and mechanisms are studied to explain the effects of 1α,25D3 on osteoblast differentiation and bone formation. Besides the classical VDR, osteoblasts also express a membrane-localized receptor, and in vitro studies have shown that osteoblasts are capable of the synthesis of 1α,25D3.