Browse Prior Art Database

New Storage Subsystem Structure

IP.com Disclosure Number: IPCOM000100807D
Original Publication Date: 1990-Jun-01
Included in the Prior Art Database: 2005-Mar-16
Document File: 2 page(s) / 55K

Publishing Venue

IBM

Related People

Donofrio, J: AUTHOR [+2]

Abstract

Typically mainframes are implemented in a relatively low scale of integration because of the high circuit speeds required; typical application of Very Large-Scale Integrated (VLSI) circuits do not require the bandwidth or function from a storage subsystem that mainframes do. The application of VLSI chips to mainframe-type computers of intermediate performance leads to unique machine organizations particularly in the storage structure.

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New Storage Subsystem Structure

       Typically mainframes are implemented in a relatively low
scale of integration because of the high circuit speeds required;
typical application of Very Large-Scale Integrated (VLSI) circuits do
not require the bandwidth or function from a storage subsystem that
mainframes do.  The application of VLSI chips to mainframe-type
computers of intermediate performance leads to unique machine
organizations particularly in the storage structure.

      The structure is shown in the drawing.  Basically, the typical
central 4x2 switch is replaced by four independent 4x1 switches
packaged on eight Base Storage Modules (BSMs). The BSMs each contain
enough logic to run independently on a one-half data flow basis.  The
full performance version of the system ran the BSMs in pairs in order
to achieve the necessary bandwidth.  The fundamental trade-off which
makes this structure unique is the decision to repeat large amounts
of hardware on a common VLSI chip which is packaged logically and
physically on each Storage/BSM.  Access time is gained by moving the
storage physically, logically, and electrically closer to the
requestors.  The use of VLSI allows this to be done while still
providing the bandwidth, function, and reliability of a mainframe
class storage subsystem.

      Elements of the Storage Subsystem
      Storage is contained on several multiported units.

      The requestor units are directly connected to the Stor...