PCI-X marks the spot for IBM, HP

IBM and Hewlett-Packard will start incorporating PCI-X into their servers in 2004, according the companies' top Intel server technologists. The move will be possible through the use of new chipsets, which join processors to memory and input-output systems such as PCI, from Broadcom subsidiary ServerWorks. Those companies and others plan to endorse PCI-X technologies in a joint announcement next week. But not everyone is such a big fan.

Dell Computer, the No. 2 seller of Intel servers after HP, prefers a different standard called PCI Express. Dell's strategy dovetails with that of Intel, which is employing PCI Express to connect chips within a server and which like ServerWorks builds the chipsets that link processors to other parts of a computer. PCI is the dominant standard used to plug network adapters and sound cards into computers. A faster version called PCI-X now is used for servers, which have a greater requirement for high-speed networks and other external connections.

Now server makers are focusing on PCI-X 2.0, two versions of which are called PCI-X 266 and PCI-X 533. Those faster successors are needed to keep up with coming versions of networking technology including InfiniBand, Ethernet and Fibre Channel, all of which will be able to transfer 10 gigabits of data per second.

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News source: c|net

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