Low-Voltage, 64-Bit Xeon Suited to Storage

Intel says it designed an embedded version of its 64-bit Xeon processor specifically for smaller-form-factor NAS and SAN storage applications.

Intel Corp. rolled out a low-power, embedded version of its new 64-bit Xeon processor on Tuesday, which the company has specifically designed for smaller-form-factor storage applications.

The new 2.8-GHz processors design will cut the heat in half when compared with a standard Xeon designed for servers, the company said. Intel, based in Santa Clara, Calif., made the announcement at the Storage Networking World conference in Orlando, Fla.

Whats unusual about the low-power, embedded Xeon is both its release date and its application.

Intel spokeswoman Connie Brown said Intel has begun releasing embedded chips based on the standard designs shortly after the original chip is launched, and that the company almost announced the embedded version of the chip at the same time the 64-bit server part was launched in late June.

Moreover, it was the embedded team, not the server team, that worked on power-managing the chip, she said.

"In the embedded space, I think in the past we took older technology, the tried and true," Brown said. "Now, the validation process happens in tandem."

The embedded Xeon will be used to design new, smaller-form-factor NAS (network-attached storage) and SAN (storage area network) devices that may not have been designed for well-ventilated environments, she said. The new 2.8-GHz Xeon with an 800-MHz bus is priced at $260 in quantities of 1,000.

/zimages/6/28571.gifClick here to read about a SAN-in-a-box product from HP and QLogic thats designed for SMBs.

An associated compiler, available through QNX Software Systems, will sell for $1,995. In a related announcement, Intel also said Emulex Corp. will use its 2-Gbits/sec TXN31011 optical transceiver in the new Emulex LightPulse LP101 Fibre Channel host-bus adaptor, for SAN applications within SMBs (small to midsized businesses).

In other storage news, San Jose, Calif.-based Hitachi Global Storage Technologies Inc. announced the Ultrastar 15K147, a 15,000-RPM enterprise disk drive available in 36 GB, 73 GB and 147 GB capacities. The Ultrastar 15K147, which uses both Ultra-320 SCSI and 2 Gb/s Fibre Channel interfaces, is currently shipping to customers worldwide, Hitachi said.

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