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Method and Apparatus to monitor and control operation and speeds of all components of a system in response to the operating environment

IP.com Disclosure Number: IPCOM000099027D
Original Publication Date: 2005-Mar-09
Included in the Prior Art Database: 2005-Mar-09
Document File: 2 page(s) / 35K

Publishing Venue

IBM

Abstract

A method and apparatus to monitor and control operation and operational speed of all components within a storage subsystem in response to its operating environment.

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Method and Apparatus to monitor and control operation and speeds of all components of a system in response to the operating environment

Storage Subsystems and other high demand systems are often plagued by thermal issues. Cooling and packaging designs become challenged and trade-offs are made to accommodate such thermal problems. Many systems today employ some type of closed loop thermal feedback but generally limit the scope to the processing complex, as an example. This article describes an approach which encompasses the entire system and the thermal feedback mechanisms for each of its respective components.

The implementation builds upon and coordinates existing technologies already in use in many products. For processors, the speed stepping technology in Intel's Pentium 4 is an example. Hard Disk Drives exist that allow one to configure access times and other operational parameters that can reduce energy demands. Adjustable spindle speeds, if not already available, would also increase this effect. Run-Time adjustable voltage regulators and clock generators already exist on consumer PC hardware, allowing Real-Time over and under clocking as well as voltage adjustments. In a storage subsystem with dual clusters, one cluster might failover to single cluster operation to reduce power consumption. All these actions would reduce the amount of power required, and thus cause the power supplies to generate less heat as they will be doing less work. A coordination of these different technologies would allow a storage controller, or other high demand system, to continue operating in extreme environments while allowing access to all data with a slight drop in performance, instead of total loss of access as exists today. Only known existing solution at this time concentrate on a single component, and do not deal with the system as a whole, so other components can still experience heat failure even though, for example, the CPU has been throttle down.

The portion of the disclosure that is explicitly needed is processor frequency control. In this version of shark, the controller enclosure no longer has any drives in it, SBOD enclosure must be added. The DDM slow spin protection can still be utilized in these enclosures. Extra frequency controls on components in the controller enclosure coupled with the DDM slow spin protection would give the complete connected system total thermal protection. Intelligence can be added to allow a system to run faster in cooler environments, where thermal restrictions are less, and slower in warmer environments. In short, this system can alleviate the worse case thermal test to determine the maximum operating speed and operating environment for the system, by allowing the system to adapt to any environment and giving those customers who have invested in improved infrastructure an increase i...