Essay: Storage of data in System i5 Series system

Essay: Storage of data in System i5 Series system
April 13, 2011 Comments Off on Essay: Storage of data in System i5 Series system Academic Papers on Information Technology,Sample Academic Papers admin

Sample Essay

Most computers hide how the information is actually stored because it is not very user friendly. In other words, the information is not stored in a ‘human-understandable format’. Every time the information is retrieved, it is transformed to a form which is human understandable. Most computers store the data in the form or 0s and 1s, that is in binary format. Since this format is not very user friendly, and iSeries is, therefore, iSeries not only hides this information from the user, but also the other physical aspects of data storage, such as the specific devices used for data storage and the location of the data on the media.

iSeries implements a unique approach the storage of data called the single level storage, which requires the user to only name the file and identify the library in which it need to be stored. Conversely, when the file is accessed, the file and library names are the only things needed for identification. The iSeries automates the process of physical data storage and other data management functions. For instances when the specific information is needed; the developers of iSeries have included the ability to control some aspects of physical storage.

The confusion of different ways of storage of binary data between manufactures or even between computers from same manufacturer led IBM to adopt the standard of EBCDIC (Enhanced Binary Coded Decimal Interchange Code), which used 8 bits of data to define each character. The other important standard for this purpose if ASCII (American Standard Code for Information Interchange) which is used mostly by non-IBM PC manufacturers. The iSeries, being an IBM product, however, uses EBCDIC.  It also allows the user to view data as it is physically stored. However, this data is displayed in the form of two-digit hexadecimal representation of each character.

Usually the computers support at least 3 methods of numeric data storage that store data more efficiently then EBCDIC. These methods are Zoned Decimal, Packed Decimal and Binary. The Packed Decimal method is the default storage method of iSeries. It uses each nibble to represent a numeric digit, as compared to Zoned Decimal which uses only the last nibble, and only the last nibble is used to denote the sign of the number. It offers 50 percent more saving on storage as compared to direct EBCDIC storage. The binary method makes efficient use of bits present in nibble to provide 33 percent more efficiency than packed decimal storage. It can store more data because it get a positional effect with each bit, whereas pack decimal gets this effect with every 4 bits. Binary uses the first bit to denote the sign of the number, however they can also be stored in the form of two’s complement. The iSeries, allocates a certain number of bytes for each number based on storage method and number of digits. The binary storage on iSeries is limited to 9-digit numbers, however, the zoned decimal and packed decimal method can store up to 31-digit numbers. Also, the packed decimal and zoned decimal numbers are much for user friendly in such that their hexadecimal character representations closely resemble the decimal representations.

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