Storage Networking Architectures
Storage Transport Protocols
– Enterprise Systems Connection
– Older storage networking technology for IBM mainframes
– FICON is IBM’s mainframe enterprise version of Fibre
Channel—shares same network layers
– Some FC Directors/Switches can support FICON and SCSI-FCP
FICON mainframe and storage Director switch FC hosts and storage
Enterprise Systems Connection (ESCON):
Storage networking technology developed by IBM and used for IBM
Defined by FC-SB
FICON is IBM’s mainframe enterprise version of Fibre Channel.
There are two versions of FICON.
The first is FICON Bridge, which interleaves up to eight ESCON
data streams into a single FICON pipe. FICON Bridge is between
the S/390 or 900Z and the ESCON Director 9032-005 or between
The second is Native FICON, which will be used between
mainframes and between mainframes and storage.
Both versions take advantage of Fibre Channel framing with some
modifications that are familiar to the ESCON user such as distance
and mainframe control of the fabric (FICON C.U.P.)