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1. US7149888 - Method and apparatus for booting the operating environment of an autonomous subsystem in a computer based system without involvement of the main operating system

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Claims

1. A method comprising:
retrieving a subsystem boot indicator;
transferring boot information to an autonomous subsystem included in a computer system based on the subsystem boot indicator, wherein the transferring of the boot information to the autonomous subsystem is performed independent of a main operating system (O/S) and a main system which are included in the computer system, wherein the main O/S and the main system are coupled with the autonomous subsystem; and
booting the autonomous subsystem independent of the main system.
2. The method of claim 1, wherein the subsystem boot indicator is located in a non-volatile storage device.
3. The method of claim 2, wherein the non-volatile storage device is located within the autonomous subsystem.
4. The method of claim 1, wherein the transferring of the boot information to the autonomous subsystem is performed over a bus with a width less than that of the main system.
5. The method of claim 1, wherein the transferring of the boot information to the autonomous subsystem is performed over a communication link whose bandwidth is less than that of the main system.
6. The method of claim 1, wherein transferring information to the subsystem is transferring information to a memory accessible by the autonomous subsystem.
7. A method comprising:
starting a boot up of a main system, the main system coupled with an autonomous subsystem and a main operating system (O/S), wherein the main system, the autonomous subsystem, and the main O/S are included in a computer system;
retrieving a boot indicator;
transferring boot information from an inaccessible location by the autonomous subsystem to an accessible location by the autonomous subsystem based upon the boot indicator; and
shutting down the main system before the main O/S has started executing; and
booting the autonomous subsystem independent of the main system.
8. The method of claim 7, wherein the shutting down of the main system does not shut down the autonomous subsystem.
9. The method of claim 7, wherein the inaccessible and accessible location are is a memory locations.
10. A machine-readable medium having stored thereon data representing sets of instructions which, when executed by a machine, cause the machine to:
retrieve a subsystem boot indicator;
transfer boot information to an autonomous subsystem included in a computer system based on the subsystem boot indicator, wherein the transferring of the boot information to the autonomous subsystem is performed independent of a main operating system (O/S) and a main system which are included in the computer system, wherein the main O/S and the main system are coupled with the autonomous subsystem; and
boot the autonomous subsystem independent of the main system.
11. The machine-readable medium of claim 10, wherein the transferring of the boot information to the autonomous subsystem comprises transferring the boot information to a storage device accessible by the autonomous subsystem.
12. The machine-readable medium of claim 11, wherein the subsystem boot indicator is received from a non-volatile storage device.
13. A computer based system comprising:
a memory device;
a main system coupled with a main storage device and the memory device, the main system including a main operating system (O/S);
an autonomous subsystem coupled with a first storage device and a second storage device;
a subsystem boot indicator; and
a boot up controller to access the subsystem boot indicator and initiate a booting of the autonomous subsystem independent of the main system and based upon the subsystem boot indicator, wherein the booting of the autonomous subsystem includes retrieving boot information from the first storage device and transferring the retrieved boot information to the second storage device, wherein the retrieving and transferring are to be performed independent of the main O/S.
14. The computer based system of claim 13 wherein the subsystem boot indicator is located in the main storage device.
15. The computer based system of claim 13 wherein the boot up controller examines the subsystem boot indicator to determine a boot status.
16. An apparatus comprising:
a main system coupled with a main storage device, the main system including a main operating system (O/S);
a subsystem coupled with a subsystem storage device;
a subsystem boot indicator; and
a boot up controller to access the subsystem boot indicator and initiate a booting of the subsystem based upon the subsystem boot indicator, wherein the booting of the subsystem includes retrieving information form a first storage device and transferring the retrieved information to a second storage device, wherein the retrieving and transferring are to be performed by a main system resource without the use of the main O/S.
17. The apparatus of claim 16 wherein the subsystem boot indicator is located in the first storage device.
18. The apparatus of claim 16 wherein the boot up controller examines the subsystem boot indicator to determine a boot status.