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(ISC) RAID Wizard Implemented in a Sales Configurator

IP.com Disclosure Number: IPCOM000126515D
Original Publication Date: 2005-Jul-22
Included in the Prior Art Database: 2005-Jul-22
Document File: 1 page(s) / 23K

Publishing Venue

IBM

Abstract

Disclosed is a system that uses a Wizard as part of a sales configuration process to provide a customer with the ability to custom-define a RAID (Redundant Array of Independent Disks) configuration. The wizard is called once the storage subsystem hardware configuration is decided and the customer elects to have IBM configure and initialize a RAID Array. The wizard presents the valid changes that are possible for the selected system as well as provides appropriate help to the customer in deciding whether a change is right for his/her needs. The output from the wizard is encapsulated in an XML document that can be automatically interpreted by manufacturing to provide the desired changes. Manufacturing has tools already that can automate the RAID configuration process, so the ability of the configurator to encapsulate the customer's RAID solution allows IBM to dynamically provide the RAID settup requested.

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(ISC) RAID Wizard Implemented in a Sales Configurator

     Configuring and initializing RAID Storage Arrays can be a complex and time consuming task for a customer to perform. So customers often ask that this activity be performed by the computer manufacturing location as the hardware is being assembled and tested. Since there are many choices that must be made including physical grouping of drives on a controller, logical groupings and RAID function levels, the permutations for how an array is configured can be quite large. IBM has approached this problem by pre-defining a small number of selectable RAID configurations, but those canned selections are too generic to satisfy more than a percentage of customers.

     The RAID wizard expands the capabilities of the configurator without making the configurator significantly more complex. Wizards can be written to be very specific to the configuration task at hand and the base configurator needs only the rules needed to determine when to launch the wizard and what information the wizard requires as input arguments. Wizards can also be written by other groups such as manufacturing or development where specific skills and knowledge can facilitate coding and delivery. With the wizard available, the main configurator only need capture the customer selections for RAID adapters and storage devices along with an indication that the customer wishes IBM to configure the RAID array. The wizard is launched with the hardware and software chosen as inputs. The wizard can then begin with an appropriate set of questions regarding RAID levels and configuration alternativ...