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Two-level coding for error control in magnetic disk storage products

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1 Author(s)
Patel, Arvind M. ; IBM General Products Division, 5600 Cottle Road, San Jose, California 95193, USA

Error-control coding has played a significant role in the design and development of magnetic recording storage products. The trend toward higher densities and data rates presents continuing demands for an ability to operate at a lower signal-to-noise ratio and to tolerate an increased number of correctable errors. Heretofore, the magnetic disk storage products used coding schemes that provided correction of one burst of errors in a record of length ranging from a few bytes of data to a full track on the disk. In this paper, we present a new coding architecture that facilitates correction of multiple-burst errors in each record in a typical disk storage application. This architecture embodies a two-level coding scheme which offers high coding efficiency along with a fast decoding strategy that closely matches the requirements of on-line correction of multiple bursts of errors. The first level has a smaller block delay and provides very fast correction of most of the errors commonly encountered in an average disk file. The second level, on a larger block size, provides reserve capability for correcting additional errors which may be encountered in a device with symptoms of a weaker component or an oncoming failure. The new IBM 3380J and 3380K disk files use a two-level scheme that is designed around the coding structure of the extended Reed-Solomon code. This design and the related encoding and decoding methods and implementation are presented in detail.

Note: The Institute of Electrical and Electronics Engineers, Incorporated is distributing this Article with permission of the International Business Machines Corporation (IBM) who is the exclusive owner. The recipient of this Article may not assign, sublicense, lease, rent or otherwise transfer, reproduce, prepare derivative works, publicly display or perform, or distribute the Article.  

Published in:

IBM Journal of Research and Development  (Volume:33 ,  Issue: 4 )

Date of Publication:

July 1989

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