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Low-power 10GBASE-T PHY consumes less than 6W

Posted: 02 May 2008 ?? ?Print Version ?Bookmark and Share

Keywords:10GbE controller? wake on LAN? network cable?

Solarflare Communications has released its 10GBASE-T PHY and enhanced 10GbE controller products, which include the 10Xpress SFT9001 PHY that consumes less than 6W at maximum 100m reach and the Solarstorm SFC4000E vNIC controller that consumes less than 2.2W at full line-rate performance.

The 10GBASE-T PHY is fully standards compliant, supporting 100m reach on standard copper network cabling and is the first 10GBASE-T PHY to support wake on LAN (WOL). With its low power and small footprint, the PHY enables high-density 10GbE switches and dual-port 10GBASE-T adapter cards. The PHY also supports legacy infrastructure and includes cable diagnostics to help ease deployment.

When combined on a server adapter, Solarflare's 10GbE silicon PHY and controller deliver ten times the performance of a 1-Gbit NIC at half the power consumption of previous 10GbE server adapters.

Specific features of the 10Xpress SFT9001 PHY include IEEE Standard 802-3an-2006 compliance; 100m reach on UTP Category 6A cabling, including the worst-case and four-connector topology in the presence of alien cross talk. In addition it supports legacy and installed copper cabling infrastructure, including 55- to 100m support for installed Category 6 UTP/STP, as well as Category 5 and 5E cabling.

The SFT9001's low power package enables high-density 10GbE switches up to 48 ports in one rack unit form factor. The SFT9001 enables dual-port 10GBASE-T server adapters that are compliant with the PCIe power specification. It provides several low power modes, including WOL from 100s of mW to less than 6W that enable efficient power management.

Specific features of the Solarstorm SFC4000E vNIC controller include 2.2W, 18Gbit/s bidirectional throughput with 1500byte maximum transport units. It also enables single-port, sub-10W adapters, and offers virtualization and iSCSI protocol acceleration with line-rate performance. vNIC architecture supports up to 4096 virtual machines per interface.

The 10Xpress SFT9001 will sample in May to top-tier switch and server OEMs and the Solarstorm SFC4000E vNIC is sampling now. Price for the PHY chip is at sub-$100 and the NIC street for dual-port 10GBASE-T at sub-$500.

- Ismini Scouras

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