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Operating System/Service Processor Communication via Shared Memory TCP/IP Disclosure Number: IPCOM000011975D
Original Publication Date: 2003-Mar-27
Included in the Prior Art Database: 2003-Mar-27
Document File: 2 page(s) / 45K

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Operating System/Service Processor Communication via Shared Memory TCP/IP

   The service processor (SP) is on the boundary between the operating system (OS) and platform management. As such, the SP necessarily has an application program interface (API) for platform management use; in modern SPs, this is typically an Ethernet running TCP/IP. The SP must also offer an API of some sort for the host machine's OS to use. From a historical perspective, the OS:SP interface is generally ad-hoc, being implemented for each system based on the hardware available and the platform management needs at the time.

     Use of a "service network" on the management side has enabled a rich, extensible, and evolving set of APIs to be used: HTTP, Telnet, SNMP, CIM and XML for a few examples. The use of ad hoc hardware methods on the OS side, by contrast, has kept the SP firmware's OS interface mired in hardware-specifics. Even the "PMC Channels" technology for SP clustering and shared-memory OS-SP communication is only a partial step, since every new protocol demands that a new channel be defined and implemented for each new purpose.

     This invention eliminates the bottlenecks and costs associated with the OS-SP interface by allowing the same APIs already offered on the service network to be made available to the OS as well.

     The mechanism is simple enough: Implement TCP/IP over memory shared by the OS and the SP. Both the SP and the OS then see the interface as a network adapter, and any desired set of off-the-shelf network functionality may be used there. An o...