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What Is Bisync?

T.S. Adams
T.S. Adams

Bisync is shorthand for binary synchronous communication. This type of communication is typically used on mainframe computers, which are large-scale networks that can support hundreds or even thousands of users at a time. Through a bisync operation, binary data can be passed directly from computer to computer through a synchronized connection on this system. A synchronized connection is a connection that transmits data at regular intervals. This allows for the exchange of files and other important data across the computing network in a timely and efficient manner.

The requirements for a bisync operation are twofold. First, the data being transmitted from computer to computer must be in binary form. Binary is the most basic of all computing languages, in which everything is expressed as strings of the characters "1" and "0." "1" indicates an "On" circuit and "0" indicates an "Off" circuit; through combinations of these characters, any letter, number, or piece of data can be effectively transferred. Each "1" or "0" takes up a single bit of storage space on the computer.

Woman doing a handstand with a computer
Woman doing a handstand with a computer

Synchronization is the second requirement of a bisync transfer. It means that the computers exchanging information must first be synced together for data exchange to occur. The concept of being synced means the computers are exchanging data in regular patterns at regular intervals; it provides a constant stream of data from one computer to the other. This differs from most types of computer communication, which is asynchronous, meaning information comes in irregular fits and spurts until the transfer is complete.

When both requirements are met, a bisync transfer of data can take place. Like pouring a bucket of water down a slide, the data being transferred from computer to computer flows in a constant stream until the communication terminates. At that point, the synchronous connection between the computers closes, terminating bisync communication. Although the connection terminates at the close of the transmission, there is no real limit on the number of bisync operations that can occur over time. Theoretically, a pair of computers could perform back to back to back bisync communications with no substantial downtime between transmissions.

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      Woman doing a handstand with a computer