Infiniband Prices Slashed by Mellanox

Mellanox's new PCI Express InfiniBand adapter accelerates 10Gb/s server and storage clusters at unbelievably affordable prices

Mellanox Technologies Ltd, the leader in performance business computing interconnects, today launched a new InfiniBand adapter that drives 10Gb/s adapter prices to unprecedented low levels. Enabled by the latest PCI Express standard, Mellanox’s new InfiniHost III Lx device offers Landed on Motherboard (LOM) and Blade Server manufacturers with a 10Gb/s adapter solution for$ 69 in volume. The new device not only paves the way for high-performance InfiniBand interconnect, both inside and outside the box, but also bridges PCI Express to high-performance consolidated and shared I/O.

“The InfiniHost III Lx Host Channel Adapter (HCA) solution is expected to speed up InfiniBand’s transition from the early-adopter phase to mainstream, industry-wide usage,” said Eyal Waldman, CEO of Mellanox Technologies.

“InfiniBand has already made significant inroads in the high performance server clustering market, so this aggressive new price point should hasten its usage in enterprise applications,” concurred Vernon Turner, Group Vice President and General Manager, Enterprise Computing, at research firm International Data Corp. (IDC). “I also like the fact that InfiniBand optimizes the performance of the entire PCI Express infrastructure being deployed in today’s data centers.”

Good Fit for Three Markets

“With Infiniband’s industry-leading scalability and performance, solutions such as 10Gb/s adapter cards coming from a number of companies, including Mellanox, will help drive down the cost per node of 10Gb/s enabled servers,” said Jim Pappas, director of Initiative Marketing for Intel’s Digital Enterprise Group. “This broad growth of products will have a positive effect on the proliferation of 10Gb/s clusters in performance business and technical computing applications.” In addition, the InfiniHost III Lx HCA opens up the storage and embedded system markets to this high-performance interface technology.

“As it fought to gain market acceptance over the past four years, InfiniBand technology had to overcome obstacles regarding software support, performance and price,” observed Nathan Brookwood, principal analyst at Insight 64 in Saratoga, CA. “SDP (Sockets Direct Protocol), DAPL (Direct Access Programming Library) and time have eliminated most of the software issues. 4X (10Gb/s) signaling and PCI Express have eliminated bottlenecks and unleashed performance. Now, Mellanox’s InfiniHost III Lx makes InfiniBand an affordable alternative for even the most aggressively priced rack-mounted and blade servers. It has taken longer than most expected, but InfiniBand is finally poised to fulfill its destiny.”

Small Size and Low Power-Consuming Device

Consuming around 2 watts of power, and merely the size of a United States dime, the InfiniHost III Lx HCA is well suited for blade servers and storage systems which require low power and compact board design. This device uses a PCI Express* interface to server processors, and features full RDMA (remote direct memory access) capabilities along with hardware transport.

The InfiniHost III Lx HCA provides high bandwidth and low-latency performance, and enables the host CPU to efficiently focus on application processing rather than burdening it with network-related tasks. By employing MemFree technology which eliminates the need for local memory, this device uses system memory for all fabric connection information, offering further reduction in cost, power, and board-space. Best of all, these advantages are easily and quickly realized as the InfiniHost III Lx is fully software compatible with previous generations of Mellanox InfiniBand adapters.

A Card-based Solution

Mellanox has also launched a single-port, 10Gb/s, InfiniBand adapter card based on the InfiniHost III Lx device. At the compact size of a credit card, this PCI Express adapter card plugs into any available x4, or wider slot in a server platform. The advanced, integrated serializer/deserializer (SerDes) design extends the reach of 10Gb/s signaling up to 40 meters over copper InfiniBand cables. The HCA card also supports off-the-shelf fiber connectivity solutions for distances up to 300 meters.

Live Demonstration at IDF

The InfiniHost III Lx HCA will be demonstrated at the Mellanox Technologies booth# 807 during exposition hours at the 2005 Spring Intel Developer Forum, March 1-3 in San Francisco.

About Mellanox

Mellanox field-proven offering of interconnect solutions for communications, storage and compute clustering are changing the shape of both business and technical computing. As the leader of industry-standard, InfiniBand-based silicon and system solutions, Mellanox is the driving force behind the most cost-effective, highest performance interconnect solutions available. For more information visit www.mellanox.com.

For more information, contact Mellanox Technologies, Inc. Thad Omura, Director of Product Marketing at 408-970-3400 or class="emailaddress">media@mellanox.com.

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