Browse Prior Art Database

Method to Send Striping Data Over One Link in an Optical Network

IP.com Disclosure Number: IPCOM000106938D
Original Publication Date: 1992-Jan-01
Included in the Prior Art Database: 2005-Mar-21
Document File: 3 page(s) / 115K

Publishing Venue

IBM

Related People

Cheng, TD: AUTHOR [+6]

Abstract

The bandwidth provided by a parallel bus can be very high but the distance is limited; therefore, fiber optical links are used to interconnect distant nodes. In doing so, the conversion between electronic signals and optical pulses becomes the bottleneck of the system. Disclosed is a method that allows large amounts of data to be transferred concurrently from a conventional parallel bus to several serial optical links with relatively slow optoelectronic conversion devices without creating any bottleneck along the path. The principle of this operation is known as the 'data striping'. The disclosed method enables data striping to be performed in such a way that the implementation of the central hub can be flexible and allows the receiving port to handle the striping data with little overhead and minimum power loss.

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Method to Send Striping Data Over One Link in an Optical Network

       The bandwidth provided by a parallel bus can be very high
but the distance is limited; therefore, fiber optical links are used
to interconnect distant nodes.  In doing so, the conversion between
electronic signals and optical pulses becomes the bottleneck of the
system.  Disclosed is a method that allows large amounts of data to
be transferred concurrently from a conventional parallel bus to
several serial optical links with relatively slow optoelectronic
conversion devices without creating any bottleneck along the path.
The principle of this operation is known as the 'data striping'.  The
disclosed method enables data striping to be performed in such a way
that the implementation of the central hub can be flexible and allows
the receiving port to handle the striping data with little overhead
and minimum power loss.  For example, in a star-topology network, the
implementation of the central hub could be passive or active, because
of the way that striping data are merged into one physical link that
passes through the hub.  Thus, flexibility on implementing different
kinds of hubs under the same I/O architecture is achievable.

      Striping is a technique that is used to transfer large amounts
of data.  It can be applied at the byte, word, or file level.  The
practice is to break bytes/words into bits or to break files into
segments, then send the dismantled information to the destination
simultaneously through different paths.  To provide the striping
function, special hardware and software are needed at the adapter
level. Usually, extra ports are required for the node with striping
capability.  The network needs special features to support a striping
function.  For example, extra links to/from nodes may be needed.
Especially when the central hub is a non-blocking switch, extra ports
on the switch are needed to handle extra links.   These requirements
result in complicated design and extra cost.  Most of all, the need
to have extra links prevents the architecture of the network from
being uniformly adoptable by different implementations of the central
hub (e.g., switch, ring or passive star network).

      The disclosed scheme enables striping data to be transferred in
one link; therefore, a uniform architecture can be applied to
different implementations of the network (i.e., ring, passive star or
switch) and no extra modification needed on the link or central hub
of the network.

      In the figure, the data links of a parallel bus are divided
into N groups according to the convention of the data s...