Palo Alto, Calif.--Sept. 22, 1997--Hewlett-Packard Co. (Palo Alto) announced its intent to enter the Fibre Channel host bus adapter (HBA) market. The company expects to introduce Fibre Channel HBA products that offer performance, stability and flexibility for storage applications, and that expand the company's presence in Fibre Channel.
In support of HP's entry into the HBA market and to facilitate their move into this market, the company has formed a strategic agreement with Compaq Computer Corp. (Houston). Through this relationship, HP and Compaq will collaborate on increasing performance and interoperability levels of next-generation Fibre Channel solutions.
As part of the agreement with Compaq, HP will obtain rights to Compaq's HBA design and suite of software device drivers. HP will use this design in creating and manufacturing its first product for the HBA market. The Compaq-designed bus adapter uses HP's TACHYON Fibre Channel controller technology as the Fibre Channel protocol IC. Future HP product proliferation, based on the TACHYON IC and next-generation ICs, will be carried forward by HP.
The HBA card acts as the critical link between a host server or workstation and the storage subsystem, integrating the computing platforms, operating systems, and I/O protocols to ensure proper interoperability and functionality. The bus adapter provides direct storage connectivity from the system to data within the storage subsystem and enables stable, high-speed transmission of information and files. The bus adapter card connects with the storage subsystem through a single PCI slot in the host computer and uses either fiber or copper media interconnect.
HP and Compaq also will cooperate on driving Fibre Channel interoperability programs, reinforcing the TACHYON family architecture as the commercial standard for Fibre Channel I/O. Ultimately, collaboration between the two companies is aimed at ensuring rapid deployment of next-generation technology while delivering stable, interoperable Fibre Channel solutions for a range of mainstream computing applications.
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