Drives, and Processors
Going along the Itanium lineup, Intel continues to expand, announcing an entire lineup. Codenamed McKinley, Madison and Deerfield, and the far off Montecito. The Madison and Deerfield lines are scheduled to be built on the .13 process, while Montecito is to be built on a .09-micron process sometime in 2004. McKinley is supposed to pop into production pretty soon with a whopping 3MB of L3 cache. Moving a little further down the timeline, Madison appears with a 6MB L3 cache.
With the upcoming Plumas E7500 server chipset, Intel has decided to use dual channel DDR SDRAM, forgoing the expected RDRAM path. The new Xeon processors that go in the chipset will run at 1.8,2, and 2.2GHz. It has been quite some time since Intel released a server level chipset, and it means quite a bit that they went with DDR SDRAM. If one looks at Intelís current chipset pipeline, itís rather interesting to note that Rambus doesnít seem to play a large role.
Serial ATA II?
After getting everybody all aboard for Serial ATA, it was time to up the stakes on this fledgling technology. Whereas the original specification was designed with the home PC in mind, Serial ATA II intends to bring all these benefits to the server market. This new spec will bring with it second generation signaling rates. Normally the spiffy stuff trickles down, not up.
For those not in the know, Serial ATA is the planned replacement for the current connector system for IDE hard drives. Instead of utilizing a wide data cable, Serial ATA will turn that into one very thin wire. Not only does this result in cleaner wiring systems for systems, motherboards design benefits from routing fewer traces due to the reduced pin count. When the spec. gains more momentum in the desktop scene, those two wires should come down to one for both power and data. All you case modders out there will have a field day with this stuff when it finally comes out.
Other companies that have come out in support of Serial ATA include the following companies Ė Adaptec, Maxtor, NEC, Seagate, Eurologic, and Molex.