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Priority arbitration mechanism

United States Patent

7,187,688
March 6, 2007
View the Complete Patent at the US Patent & Trademark Office
Lawrence Livermore National Laboratory - Visit the Industrial Partnerships Office Website
A method is provided for selecting a data source for transmission on one of several logical (virtual) lanes embodied in a single physical connection. Lanes are assigned to either a high priority class or to a low priority class. One of six conditions is employed to determine when re-arbitration of lane priorities is desired. When this occurs a next source for transmission is selected based on a the specification of the maximum number of high priority packets that can be sent after a lower priority transmission has been interrupted. Alternatively, a next source for transmission is selected based on a the specification of the maximum number of high priority packets that can be sent while a lower priority packet is waiting. If initialized correctly, the arbiter keeps all of the packets of a high priority packet contiguous, while allowing lower priority packets to be interrupted by the higher priority packets, but not to the point of starvation of the lower priority packets.
Garmire; Derrick L. (Kingston, NY), Herring; Jay R. (Poughkeepsie, NY), Stunkel; Craig B. (Bethel, CT)
International Business Machines Corporation (Armonk, NY)
10/ 185,028
20040001502
June 28, 2002
This invention was made with Government support under subcontract B338307 under prime contract W-7405-ENG-48 awarded by the Department of Energy. The Government has certain rights in this invention.