High Speed Software Interval Timer
Original Publication Date: 1985-Sep-01
Included in the Prior Art Database: 2005-Feb-19
The typical use of an interval timer in many environments is for error detection. An interval timer is initiated at the time an operation starts (either I/O or a program task) and aborted at the completion of the operation. If the time interval expires prior to completion of the operation, an error situation exists and the appropriate recovery action is initiated. In some environments, e.g., a display controller, the performance overhead for conventional interval timer support software is intolerable. The high speed software interval timer described herein reduces the overhead associated with starting and stopping an interval timer to a single storage operation, thereby allowing a control unit to initiate and terminate thousands of interval timers a second.