(Enterprise Systems CONnection) An IBM S/390 fiber-optic channel that transfers 17 Mbytes/sec over distances up to 60 km depending on connection type. ESCON allows peripheral devices to be located across large campuses and metropolitan areas.Compared to the copper-based, parallel bus and tag channels, ESCON provides greater speeds and uses a serial interface. An ESCON Director is a hub-and-spoke coupling device that provides 8-16 ports (Model 1) or 28-60 ports (Model 2). See FICON and EMIF.
A proprietary storage area network (SAN) developed by IBM for a high speed serial interface between mainframe computers and peripherals such as external disk drives. ESCON supports data transfer rates up to 17 MBps in half-duplex (HDX) over distances up to 43 km. ESCON is yielding to Fibre Connections (FICON), a faster technology that runs over Fibre Channel. See also Bps, Fibre Channel, FICON, HDX, mainframe, peripheral, SAN, and serial.