Intel announces Gigabit Ethernet adapter

Intel has begun shipping samples of its third-generation Gigabit Ethernet adapters.

Products include the PRO/1000 T desktop adapter, which will be available later this year at $US99, and the PRO/1000 XT server adapter. Both adapters are optimised for common copper networks and are based on the company's single-chip Gigabit Ethernet controller.

Intel said IT managers will be able to deploy the adapters in existing category 5 Ethernet (10Mbit/sec) or fast Ethernet (100 Mbit/sec) networks. Both adapters support a broad range of operating systems.

As the network infrastructure evolves, the adapters will automatically adjust performance to higher Gigabit Ethernet (1000Mbit/sec) speeds without additional configuration.

The server adapter supports the PCI-X bus, a new bus architecture allowing servers to transfer data faster within systems helping to alleviate communication bottlenecks and improve tbe overall performance of the network.

Greg Lang, vice president and general manager of Intel's platform networking group, said: "As customers upgrade servers and desktops to Intel's multi-gigabit processors with next generation bus architectures, they need to also scale network bandwidth to Gigabit Ethernet levels. This provides a balanced, high performance environment."

Intel is also in volume production of single-chip Gigabit Ethernet controllers. These enable original equipment manufacturers to build Gigabit Ethernet network connections directly into servers, workstations or networking devices using a type of connection called LAN-on-motherboard (LOM).

In other news, Intel has cut the prices on some of its mobile Celeron processors and has begun shipping desktop, mobile and server versions of its next-generation Pentium III processor, codenamed 'Tualatin'. These processors are manufactured using a 0.13 micron process technology, a term that refers to the dimension of circuits etched on the surface of chips.

IBM will be among the first vendors to support the new chip, with plans to release a Tualatin server shortly.

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