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SubjectRe: [PATCH] 64 bit scsi read/write
At 9:45 AM +0100 2001-07-14, Alan Cox wrote:
> > If, after a power outage, the IDE disk can keep going for long enough
>> to write its write cache out to the reserved vendor area (which will
>> only take 20-30 milliseconds) then the data may be considered *safe*
>> as soon as it hits writecache.
>
>Hohohoho.
>
>> In which case it is perfectly legitimate and sensible for the drive
>> to ignore flush commands, and to ack data as soon as it hits cache.
>
>Since the flushing commands are 'optional' it can legitimately ignore them
>
>> If I'm right then the only open question is: which disks do and
>> do not do the right thing when the lights go out.
>
>As far as I can tell none of them at least in the IDE world

It's not so great in the SCSI world either. Here's a bit from the
Ultrastar 73LZX functional spec (this is the current-technology
Ultra160 73GB family):

>5.0 Data integrity
>The drive retains recorded information under all non-write operations.
>No more than one sector will be lost by power down during write
>operation while write cache is
>disabled.
>If power down occurs before completion of data transfer from write
>cache to disk while write cache is
>enabled, the data remaining in write cache will be lost. To prevent
>this data loss at power off, the
>following action is recommended:
>* Confirm successful completion of SYNCHRONIZE CACHE (35h) command.

What's worse, though the spec is not explicit on this point, it
appears that the write cache is lost on a SCSI reset, which is
typically used by drivers for last-resort error recovery. And of
course a SCSI bus reset affects all the drives on the bus, not just
the offending one.
--
/Jonathan Lundell.
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