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Adaptec Demos Ultra320 RAID

(August 09, 2001)
Adaptec, Inc. announced that it has achieved Ultra320 SCSI performance in a RAID controller. Samples of Adaptec's Ultra320 SCSI ASIC are shipping now to major PC-server OEMs for their PC server motherboards and RAID controller designs. Compaq, Dell, Fujitsu/Siemens, Hewlett-Packard, and IBM are among the PC server OEMs that have already received Adaptec's Ultra320 SCSI ASIC samples.

Higher performance SCSI is crucial for RAID arrays with many drives on a SCSI bus segment, and for applications such as e-commerce, real-time computing, data mining and audio/video editing. Gartner Dataquest projects that terabytes attached to SCSI-based host RAID controllers and host bus adapters will increase 8.6 fold between 2000 and 2005. This huge increase in SCSI disk drive storage capacity requires the level of throughput performance provided by Ultra320 technology.

"Adaptec's SCSI and RAID customers will be able to transition quickly to our full Ultra320 product suite," said Lee Caswell, vice president and general manager of Adaptec's Storage Solutions Group. "Because of Adaptec's longstanding position as a SCSI leader, customers who use Adaptec's SCSI controllers will have an added level of assurance in getting first to market with Adaptec's Ultra320 RAID. Adaptec's Ultra320 controllers will be signal-compatible with our Ultra160 controllers, providing a smooth upgrade path not only for our own products, but for our customers as well."

Ultra320 includes two new performance-enhancing features -- packet protocol and Quick Arbitration and Select (QAS). Packet protocol and QAS dramatically increase SCSI efficiency by allowing both data and commands to be transferred at 320 Mbytes/sec speeds. Adaptec has proven out the implementation of these features by performing thorough and complete testing with disk drive partners. The Company's Ultra320 products also support the new PCI-X bus which doubles bus throughput to a full 1 GByte per second. The current PCI bus has enough bandwidth for today's Ultra 160 SCSI controllers. The new bus architecture is required to obtain the full performance of Ultra320 SCSI.

"PCI-X is now a fundamental requirement in the server market, and we expect it to be in nearly all new Pentium 4 servers," said Dave Pulling, vice president of marketing for ServerWorks, the leading supplier of SystemI/O solutions for Intel Architecture processors. "Adaptec and ServerWorks have been working together since the PCI-X design process began, and have completed PCI-X design validation to ensure a low-risk path to the new bus architecture."

Adaptec's transition to Ultra320 SCSI RAID products is part of the Company's "RAID Everywhere" initiative to put RAID on every server. Launched in August 2000, RAID Everywhere is designed to accelerate the widespread adoption of RAID in the PC-server/high-end PC markets, in order to provide customers higher levels of data protection and greater speeds of information exchange in support of their business strategies. Key components of the plan include new product and technology developments, compatibility testing, and educational and support programs aimed at making RAID more affordable, accessible and easy-to-use.

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