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Method for physical virtualization of an array of serial hard disk drive storage devices

IP.com Disclosure Number: IPCOM000009833D
Publication Date: 2002-Sep-20
Document File: 3 page(s) / 130K

Publishing Venue

The IP.com Prior Art Database

Abstract

Disclosed is a method for physical virtualization of an array of serial hard disk drive (HDD) storage devices. Benefits include improved functionality and improved design flexibility.

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Method for physical virtualization of an array of serial hard disk drive storage devices

Disclosed is a method for physical virtualization of an array of serial hard disk drive (HDD) storage devices. Benefits include improved functionality and improved design flexibility.

Background

        � � � � � In conventional serial hard drive technology, each HDD requires a dedicated point-to-point cable to connect to a controller (see Figure 1). This requirement creates a limitation on extensibility. One option has been explored to support the existence of more than one drive per cable. A more complicated protocol is utilized between the controller and the HDD, requiring switching devices to handle the new protocol. This solution presents the problem of overcomplicating what is intended to be a simplistic protocol. This solution approaches other more complicated protocols, such as protocols that are compatible with those described in Infiniband Trade Association’s Infiniband™ Specification 1.0 (release date October 24, 2000) or PCI-SIG’s PCI Express™ Specification 1.0 (release date July 23, 2002).

        � � � � � Other conventional serial HDD protocols include the Serial ATA 1.0 Working Group’s SATA Specification 1.0 (release date August 29, 2001) and serial attached SCSI (SAS).

Description

        � � � � � The disclosed method is the physical virtualization of an array of serial HDDs. A unique front end to a serial storage subsystem is connected to an existing system (see Figure 2). In the conventional system, the physical virtualization subsystem functions like a single HDD even though it can be an HDD array. The device front end is an existing circuit taken from the front end of a hard drive. The serial HDD controller within subsyste...