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"Storage System, Method of Controlling a Storage System and Management System for Storage System" in Patent Application Approval Process

August 7, 2014



By a News Reporter-Staff News Editor at Computer Weekly News -- A patent application by the inventors Saito, Hideo (Kawasaki, JP); Nakagawa, Hirotaka (Sagamihara, JP); Goto, Yoichi (Yokohama, JP); Johri, Abhishek (Yokohama, IN); Kawaguchi, Tomohiro (Chigasaki, JP); Nashimoto, Kunihiko (Ninomiya, JP); Mori, Nobuhito (Kawasaki, JP); Ikegaya, Naoko (Sagamihara, JP); Yamamoto, Akira (Sagamihara, JP), filed on January 11, 2013, was made available online on July 24, 2014, according to news reporting originating from Washington, D.C., by VerticalNews correspondents.

This patent application is assigned to Hitachi, Ltd.

The following quote was obtained by the news editors from the background information supplied by the inventors: "The increased data capacity handled by computer systems has brought about an increase in the number of users who own a plurality of real storage apparatuses, and a reduction in storage running cost is wished for. Patent Literature 1 discloses a method with which a plurality of real storage apparatuses can be managed as a virtual storage apparatus. This method virtualizes numbers assigned to resources of real storage apparatuses such as volumes, pairs, and groups so that an administrator sees those numbers as resources of a virtual storage apparatus."

In addition to the background information obtained for this patent application, VerticalNews journalists also obtained the inventors' summary information for this patent application: "Technical Problem

"Patent Literature 1, however, does not disclose a method that enables the administrator of the virtual storage apparatus to run the virtual storage apparatus without being conscious of physical boundaries of the plurality of real storage apparatuses.

"Solution to Problem

"An aspect of this invention is a storage system for providing a virtual storage apparatus that includes a plurality of virtual storage resources associated with a plurality of real storage resources of a plurality of real storage apparatuses. The plurality of real storage apparatuses include a first real storage apparatus and a second real storage apparatus. The first real storage apparatus receives a virtual storage resource control command of a predetermined type which specifies a first virtual storage resource in the virtual storage apparatus and a second virtual storage resource associated with the first virtual storage resource. The first real storage apparatus refers to management information for managing association relations between the plurality of virtual storage resources and the plurality of real storage resources, to identify a first real storage resource which is associated with the first virtual storage resource and one of the plurality of real storage apparatuses that includes the first real storage resource. When the one of the plurality of real storage apparatus that includes the first real storage resource is the first real storage apparatus, the first real storage apparatus performs one of selecting a second real storage resource which is associated with the second virtual storage resource from real storage resources that belong to the first real storage apparatus, and creating the second real storage resource. When the one of the plurality of real storage apparatus that includes the first real storage resource is the second real storage apparatus, the second real storage apparatus performs one of selecting the second real storage resource from real storage resources that belong to the second real storage apparatus, and creating the second real storage resource following an instruction from the first real storage apparatus.

"Advantageous Effects of Invention

"According to this invention, a plurality of real storage apparatus can be run without the need for being conscious of physical boundaries, and the storage running cost is accordingly reduced.

BRIEF DESCRIPTION OF DRAWINGS

"FIG. 1A is a block diagram illustrating the overall configuration of a computer system according to a first embodiment of this invention.

"FIG. 1B is a block diagram illustrating the configuration of a virtual storage management computer and a management computer according to the first embodiment of this invention.

"FIG. 2 is a diagram illustrating an association relation between the real configuration and virtual configuration of storage apparatuses in the first embodiment.

"FIG. 3 is a diagram illustrating conceptually a data configuration in a memory of each storage apparatus in the first embodiment.

"FIG. 4 is a diagram illustrating conceptually the data configuration of a VOL management table of each storage apparatus in the first embodiment.

"FIG. 5 is a diagram illustrating conceptually the data configuration of a POOL configuration management table of each storage apparatus in the first embodiment.

"FIG. 6 is a diagram illustrating conceptually the data configuration of a page allocation management table of each storage apparatus in the first embodiment.

"FIG. 7 is a diagram illustrating conceptually the data configuration of a virtual VOL management table of each storage apparatus in the first embodiment.

"FIG. 8 is a diagram illustrating conceptually the data configuration of a virtual POOL management table of each storage apparatus in the first embodiment.

"FIG. 9 is a flow chart illustrating steps of POOL-VOL adding processing of the storage apparatus in the first embodiment.

"FIG. 10 is a flow chart illustrating steps of DP-VOL creating processing of the storage apparatus in the first embodiment.

"FIG. 11 is a flow chart illustrating steps of POOL-VOL adding processing that is initiated and conducted by a management computer in the first embodiment.

"FIG. 12 is a flow chart illustrating steps of DP-VOL creating processing that is initiated and conducted by the management computer in the first embodiment.

"FIG. 13 is a diagram illustrating an association relation between the real configuration and virtual configuration of storage apparatus in a second embodiment of this invention.

"FIG. 14 is a diagram illustrating conceptually a data configuration in a memory of each storage apparatus in the second embodiment.

"FIG. 15 is a diagram illustrating conceptually the data configuration of a local copy pair configuration management table of each storage apparatus in the second embodiment.

"FIG. 16 is a diagram illustrating conceptually the data configuration of a virtual local copy pair management table of each storage apparatus in the second embodiment.

"FIG. 17 is a flow chart illustrating steps of local copy pair creating processing of the storage apparatus in the second embodiment.

"FIG. 18 is a flow chart illustrating steps of local copy pair creating processing that is initiated and conducted by a management computer in the second embodiment.

"FIG. 19 is a diagram illustrating the real configuration of storage apparatuses in a third embodiment of this invention.

"FIG. 20 is a diagram illustrating the virtual configuration of the storage apparatuses in the third embodiment.

"FIG. 21 is a diagram illustrating conceptually a data configuration in a memory of each storage apparatus in the third embodiment.

"FIG. 22 is a diagram illustrating conceptually the data configuration of a journal group configuration management table of each storage apparatus in the third embodiment.

"FIG. 23 is a diagram illustrating conceptually the data configuration of a remote copy pair configuration management table of each storage apparatus in the third embodiment.

"FIG. 24 is a diagram illustrating conceptually the data configuration of a virtual journal group management table of each storage apparatus in the third embodiment.

"FIG. 25 is a diagram illustrating conceptually the data configuration of a virtual remote copy pair management table of each storage apparatus in the third embodiment.

"FIG. 26 is a flow chart illustrating steps of JVOL adding processing of the storage apparatus in the third embodiment.

"FIG. 27 is a flow chart illustrating steps of remote copy pair creating processing of the storage apparatus in the third embodiment.

"FIG. 28 is a flow chart illustrating steps of JVOL adding processing that is initiated and conducted by a management computer in the third embodiment.

"FIG. 29 is a flow chart illustrating steps of remote copy pair creating processing that is initiated and conducted by a management computer in the third embodiment"

URL and more information on this patent application, see: Saito, Hideo; Nakagawa, Hirotaka; Goto, Yoichi; Johri, Abhishek; Kawaguchi, Tomohiro; Nashimoto, Kunihiko; Mori, Nobuhito; Ikegaya, Naoko; Yamamoto, Akira. Storage System, Method of Controlling a Storage System and Management System for Storage System. Filed January 11, 2013 and posted July 24, 2014. Patent URL: http://appft.uspto.gov/netacgi/nph-Parser?Sect1=PTO2&Sect2=HITOFF&u=%2Fnetahtml%2FPTO%2Fsearch-adv.html&r=440&p=9&f=G&l=50&d=PG01&S1=20140717.PD.&OS=PD/20140717&RS=PD/20140717

Keywords for this news article include: Hitachi Ltd.

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Source: Computer Weekly News


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