SANTA CLARA, Calif.--April 14, 2003--PMC-Sierra, Inc. (NASDAQ: PMCS) introduced the PM8368 PBC 18x2G and PM8372 PBC 4x2G Intelligent FibreChannel Port-Bypass Controllers for networked storage systems. These port-bypass controllers deliver extensive system diagnostics, design flexibility, industry-leading signal integrity, high port density, and low power at an unprecedented price and feature set. Leveraging the company's high-speed, mixed-signal, cross-connect, and 2G FibreChannel expertise, this new class of product enables storage-system OEMs to develop low-cost, high-performance, and intelligent storage subsystems using fewer components. IT managers needing to maintain complex, multi-vendor, and mission-critical storage networks will benefit from the enhanced system-level diagnostics and increased reliability provided by PMC-Sierra's standard-compliant, carrier-class 2G FibreChannel products.
"Challenges to the success of storage-networking technology are interoperability, reliability, availability, serviceability, and manageability. We are leveraging our widely deployed multi-port, multi-Gigabit SerDes and 2G FibreChannel technology into storage-system applications," said Mark Stibitz, vice president and general manager, Enterprise and Storage Division, PMC-Sierra. "Coupled with an innovative cross-connect architecture, our port-bypass controller family is solving both system-design and signal-integrity issues for our storage OEM customers."
18-Port and 4-Port Bypass Controllers for Storage Systems
The PBC 18x2G 18-port and the PBC 4x2G 4-port bypass controllers have integrated Serializer/Deserializer (SerDes) and cross-connect switches with per-port monitoring, zoning, and system-diagnostic features for 1.0625 Gbits/s and 2.125 Gbits/s FibreChannel RAID (Redundant Array of Independent Disks), JBOD (Just a Bunch Of Disks), MBOD (Managed Bunch of Disks). and SBOD (Switched Bunch of Disks) storage subsystems. In a disk-array subsystem, these devices interface to FibreChannel hard drives, host bus adapters (HBAs), and external ports in a FibreChannel Arbitrated Loop configuration. These devices can also be configured as serial-link retimers to optimize signal integrity in either 1 and 2G FibreChannel or Gigabit Ethernet applications where link reliability is critical in long backplanes and cabling interconnect areas.
Extensive Link and Systems Diagnostics Improves Storage Maintenance and Reliability
The PBC 18x2G and PBC 4x2G provide extensive link and system diagnostics to quickly isolate and reconfigure the system to correct disk or link failures. Each individual port or disk zone can be configured to monitor and measure errors such as CRC32 errors, 8B/10B code violations, comma-density errors, and loss of signal. To isolate issues while maintaining system operation, each port can be bypassed automatically or manually. The built-in, self-test features such as the integrated packet generator/comparator and serial loopback paths provide mechanisms for robust system design and test.
System Design Flexibility with Unique Device Architecture Optimizes Storage Performance
The integrated cross-connect switch enables a unique device architecture that offers system-design flexibility. The cross-connect allows for unrestricted per-port zoning and per-port retiming, reclocking, or signal pass-thru so system designers can optimize trade-offs between signal jitter and latency. The devices support pin configuration or programmable software configuration and status through an industry-standard simple two-wire interface management port.
Superior Signal Integrity and Solution Density Lowers Storage System Costs
The PBC 18x2G and PBC 4x2G devices support multi-level programmable pre-emphasis, receive equalization, and output swing on a per-port basis, enabling extremely robust signal integrity in the most challenging environments. The integrated resistive termination and AC coupling eliminate vias in high-speed traces, minimizing reflections, and adding to the robustness of the design. The PBC 18x2G integrates 100 W termination per port, and the PBC 4x2G offers selectable 100 or 150 W termination on a per-port basis to accommodate either cable or backplane interconnect. The integrated termination and AC coupling eliminate the need for external resistors and capacitors, which dramatically simplifies manufacturing, lowers the bill-of-materials, and reduces the solution footprint by over 60 percent when compared to current solutions. In typical storage-system applications, the PBC 18x2G and PBC 4x2G devices offer a low-power solution of 4.2 W and 1.1 W
respectively, resulting in a savings of more than 70 percent over currently available products.
Pricing, Availability, and Customer Support
PMC-Sierra is sampling both port-bypass controller products to storage-system OEMs, and evaluation kits are available. The PM8368 PBC 18x2G 18-port controller is packaged in a compact 23 mm × 23 mm thermally enhanced 228-pin UBGA package. The PM8372 PBC 4x2G 4-port controller is packaged in a 15 mm × 15 mm 196-pin CABGA package. The PBC 18x2G and PBC 4x2G devices are priced at $65 and $21 in direct purchase of 1KU quantities. For comprehensive datasheets, application notes, and an evaluation kit, please visit www.pmc-sierra.com/storage, contact sales at firstname.lastname@example.org, or contact applications support at email@example.com.
PMC-Sierra is a leading provider of high-speed broadband communications and storage semiconductors and MIPS-based processors for Enterprise, Access, Metro Optical Transport, Storage-Area Networking, and Wireless network equipment. The company offers worldwide technical and sales support, including a network of offices throughout North America, Europe, and Asia. For more information, visit www.pmc-sierra.com.