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QLogic to Provide Fibre Channel over Ethernet Network Adapters for IBM Power Systems

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In its second collaboration with IBM this year to bring converged networking solutions to mainstream data centers, QLogic Corp. has announced that IBM has integrated QLogic's award-winning single chip 8100 Series converged network adapters (CNAs) for native Fibre Channel over Ethernet (FCoE) connectivity into IBM's Power Systems portfolio of tower, rack-mount, and blade servers. Based on IBM's industry-leading POWER6 processors, the IBM Power Systems line is a single, energy-efficient and easy-to-deploy platform for UNIX, Linux, and IBM i applications.

"QLogic has been racking up some rather impressive wins since it introduced its single chip CNAs in March. The latest, IBM's selection of QLogic 8142 CNAs for its Power Systems, represents an important foothold in IBM's high performance UNIX and Linux systems and further demonstrates the advantages of the QLogic 8100 series in these demanding environments," said Bob Laliberte, senior analyst, Enterprise Strategy Group. "IBM customers will benefit from this innovative FCoE technology to deliver converged networking with optimized 10GbE performance, while minimizing the power and cooling requirements."

"Our first Power Systems design win is highly complementary to our longstanding business with other key products in the IBM server portfolio," said Amit Vashi, vice president of marketing, Host Solutions Group, QLogic. "As the first system vendor to integrate QLogic single chip CNAs for native FCoE connectivity across its Intel-based server portfolio--BladeCenter and System x--IBM continues along its aggressive path of innovation with today's advancements to its Power Systems line. Considered the gold standard for large-scale UNIX and Linux deployments, the addition of FCoE connectivity to the Power Systems line opens up the numerous business and technology advantages of converged networks for these enterprises."

"IBM's Power Systems such as the IBM POWER6 processor-based servers deliver industry-leading performance and a balanced system design that provides companies with flexibility and responsiveness to changing business environments," said Kelvin Hawkins, vice president, Power Systems Development, IBM. "The addition of converged networking capabilities with QLogic 8100 Series CNAs enables customers to network their Fibre Channel storage over their pervasive Ethernet infrastructure at 10Gb speeds, ensuring peak performance for critical business applications while preserving current investments, lowering connectivity costs and centralizing network management. QLogic's expertise in real-world FCoE deployments combined with IBM's vast data center solutions capabilities have resulted in new opportunities for datacenter efficiency for our most demanding UNIX and Linux clients."

"QLogic continues its stellar execution of integration of its converged networking technology with this design win as the provider of single-chip CNAs for IBM Power servers," said Tom Trainer, president, Analytico, Inc. "This is clearly a win-win-win for IBM customers, IBM and QLogic. QLogic has positioned itself as the industry's premier FCoE product provider, and continues to outmaneuver its competitors with its innovative and cost-effective design characteristics and the continual racking up of strategic design wins. It is difficult to see how competitors in this space can keep up with QLogic as it continues to advance over the competition with win after win."

Leveraging its mainframe heritage, IBM Power Systems feature Dynamic Logical Partitions (DLPARs) that enable fine-grained resource allocation to occur not only when activating a logical partition, but also while the partitions are running. Individual processors, memory regions, and I/O adapter slots can be released into a "free pool," acquired from that free pool, or moved directly from one partition to another again, in almost any quantity or combination.

"IBM's Dynamic LPARs allow IT administrators to consolidate many UNIX and Linux servers on to fewer virtualized server platforms, while QLogic's CNA technology consolidates network connectivity," said John Webster, senior partner, Evaluator Group. "As a result of this agreement, IT administrators can now do server and network consolidation at the same time."

With native FCoE connectivity on IBM Power Systems, IBM is providing the latest in enterprise data center connectivity options to UNIX and Linux customers while significantly lowering power consumption and heat dissipation across the enterprise. The QLogic 8100 Series ASIC, based on the Network Plus Architecture, handles storage and data networking traffic at 10GbE line speeds, consumes only one third the power of existing CNA chip sets and is the only CNA on the market to completely eliminate the need for a heat sink.

Leveraging the established architecture of the market-leading QLogic 2500 Series Fibre Channel adapters, the 8100 Series is also the first single chip CNA with an integrated, full FCoE offload engine, enabling faster application performance while saving precious CPU resources, which translates to higher degrees of server virtualization in the data center. By integrating converged networking technology into its Power Systems servers, IBM is enabling customers to preserve the investments and strengths of Fibre Channel while leveraging the ubiquity and economics of Ethernet.

"Server designers face enormous challenges in the coming decade," said David Vellante, chief research advocate for Wikibon.org, a peer-based community of IT practitioners. "Huge increases in processing power combined with the effects of virtualization are constraining server real estate and testing heat density limits. These issues are even more pronounced in very high performance environments such as those leveraging IBM's Power Systems servers. The most practical solution is to forego traditional designs which rely on separate Ethernet and FC cards and converge network traffic using single chip CNAs. QLogic's design win with IBM's Power System servers represents another step toward the steady adoption of FCoE."

Sergis Mushell, Principal Research Analyst at Gartner, said, "Gartner is tracking the FCoE market development closely and the adoption and deployment of CNAs is a significant indicator of adoption of the FCoE standard. Current data center server environments have a minimum of four high-speed network connections for each server, and CNAs offer the ability to reduce server I/O to two higher-speed interfaces, which will reduce physical interfaces by half. Reducing the number of server I/O interfaces will simplify cabling in server racks and is a step towards a greener IT environment and lower power consumption."

Available in multiple form factors, including standard and mezzanine cards, QLogic 8100 Series adapters offer full certification for nearly every OS, including UNIX, Linux, Windows Server, AIX and HP-UX, and virtualization platforms, such as VMware ESX Server, Microsoft Windows Server 2008 Hyper-V and Citrix XenServer, as well as any hardware platform from PowerPC to Nehalem. The QLogic 8100 Series CNAs are optimized for both data and storage networking virtualization with superior 10GbEE performance to handle massive quantities of virtual machines.

About QLogic

QLogic (Nasdaq:QLGC) is a global leader and technology innovator in high performance networking, including adapters, switches and ASICs. Leading OEMs and channel partners worldwide rely on QLogic products for their data, storage and server networking solutions. QLogic is a NASDAQ Global Select company and is included in the S&P 500. For more information, visit www.qlogic.com.

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