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Host bus adapter handles 250,000 I/Os per second

Posted: 28 Oct 2005 ?? ?Print Version ?Bookmark and Share

Keywords:silverback systems? pci-x? iscsi? internet small computer systems interface? hba?

Silverback's PCI-X iSCSI HBA

TCP and iSCSI acceleration product vendor Silverback Systems Inc. is rolling out a PCI-X iSCSI (Internet Small Computer Systems Interface) HBA (host bus adapter) the company claims has the industry's highest performance and function set. Dubbed the iSNAP 2110, this device is slated for server and workstation applications. The board packs dual 1Gbps Ethernet-compliant IEEE-802.3 full duplex ports.

Dual-port Gigabit
Silverback Systems' HBA is based on the company's existing iSNAP 2110 network acceleration processor. Thanks to that, the dual-port gigabit HBA is capable of delivering up to 440MBps throughput full-duplex simultaneous line saturation across the dual ports, and up to 250,000 IOPS (iSCSI I/Os/s).

Silverback therefore claims its HBA will outperform competitive offerings by 100 percent, yet costs about 25 percent lower. Priced at about $350 each, the OEM board is available now.

The iSNAP 2110 HBA also has an underlying architecture and firmware that makes it scalable to 10Gbps speeds, and beyond. It can also support emerging technologies and protocols. The board dissipates 3.5W/channel.

10Gbps accelerator and HBA to come
Silverback expects to sample an iSNAP-based 10Gbps accelerator and HBA in the first half of 2006. Working under Windows Server 2003 SP1 (or Red Hat Linux Enterprise 4.0, or SuSE Linux Professional 9.0), the iSNAP HBA also simultaneously accelerates all TCP/IP, iSCSI, and link-layer traffic, and reduces host processor loading with on-board direct data placement, data digest, and Layer 3 end-point behavior. The iSNAP HBA also does CRC acceleration, works in a VLAN (virtual local area network) with priority queuing, and does jumbo frame processing. It also uses iSCSI PDU (packet data unit) delineation, and handles TCP fragmentation and re-assembly.

Significantly, it accelerates TCP/IP and iSCSI in hardware. Hardware-based implementations provide advantages over software-only or software/hardware alternatives that sometimes suffer from limited performance, and performance degradation with increased network traffic.

- Alex Mendelsohn

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