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DSI releases new network storage protocol into Open Source

Aug 28, 2002 — by LinuxDevices Staff — from the LinuxDevices Archive — views

Singapore — (press release excerpt) — The Data Storage Institute (DSI) today released the HyperSCSI protocol and reference implementation code into open source. HyperSCSI is a new storage protocol designed for the transfer of SCSI data and commands over networks. The current protocol release runs on Ethernet-based networks.

“Our engineers' work on HyperSCSI demonstrates that using Ethernet for high performance storage networking is indeed viable and secure,” said Professor Chong Tow Chong, Director for DSI. “HyperSCSI is designed to be extremely flexible. In this way, it can meet the network storage needs of various diverse technology fields, from consumer electronics to enterprise storage systems.”

DSI, a research institute of the Agency for Science, Technology and Research (A*STAR), has been working on the HyperSCSI project for over two years. Unlike other network storage protocols based on Ethernet, HyperSCSI does not use TCP/IP as a foundation for communications. While this may run counter to convention, it has in fact allowed HyperSCSI to achieve high throughput without the need for complex and expensive hardware add-ons. Intrinsic advantages of bypassing TCP/IP include immunity to hacking via the Internet, simplicity and plug-and-play functions, making HyperSCSI easy to use for developers and users.

Benchmarks conducted by the DSI using common off-the-shelf hardware demonstrate that HyperSCSI can achieve 100MB/s sustained data throughput using a 2GB size data set. There was no requirement for customized hardware, device drivers, accelerator chips or proprietary software. In another demonstration, HyperSCSI was used to display smooth DVD video played directly from a standard DVD drive over an 802.11b Wireless LAN network.

Not limiting itself to just IDE and SCSI hard disk drives, HyperSCSI also supports optical, tape and even removable USB drives. DSI has successfully used HyperSCSI for CDRW recording and tape drive backup over the network. It is compatible with Fast Ethernet, Gigabit Ethernet (with and without Jumbo frames) and 802.11b Wireless LAN. The present version of HyperSCSI also includes built-in 128-bit encryption.

Some of the application areas in which HyperSCSI is currently being tested include data backup and recovery, storage for high performance computing clusters and grids, wireless network storage, home network storage, personal area network storage and Ethernet-based storage area networks.

Upcoming developments for HyperSCSI include multi-channel support, in-band management and wider platform support. Ultimately, HyperSCSI will help to provide cheaper and more efficient storage solutions to both enterprises and ordinary consumers.

The HyperSCSI protocol has been recognised by the Institute of Electrical and Electronics Engineers (IEEE) and assigned the Ethertype Number #889a.

For further information or to view HyperSCSI's protocol specifications, reference code and benchmarking results, please visit the HyperSCSI website.

About Data Storage Institute

A national research institute under the Agency for Science, Research and Technology, Data Storage Institute is ranked among the top six storage R&D centers worldwide. DSI aims to achieve excellence in research with a dynamic research culture and stay relevant to industry in the provision of technology solutions to industrial partners. Collaborating closely with academia and industry in research and manpower training, its core competencies are consolidated under the five major research divisions of Head, Media and Materials; Mechanical, Electronics System Design; Optical Technology, Network Storage Technology and Technology Support. For more information, please refer to

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