Sun partners for high-speed Ethernet

Sun Microsystems Inc. will integrate drivers for S2io Technologies Inc.’s Xframe 10 Gigabit Ethernet Adapter into the Solaris operating system for Sparc, Advanced Micro Devices Inc. Opteron, and Intel Corp. Xeon servers. In addition, S2io will partner with Sun to develop a TCP/IP offload engine with remote direct memory access functionality to enhance performance and scalability in intense computer and server environments.

Both announcements are aimed at high-performance server environments and mission-critical applications, said Dave Zabrowski, president and CEO of startup S2io. “This is another clear example of the growing demand for 10GbE and its unique ability to offer a clear path for server optimization while protecting existing data center investment,” he said.

Sun is developing new high-performance TCP/IP architecture for Solaris, called FireEngine. “Working with S2io will help us to jointly address customer demand for higher levels of server performance due to the exponential growth of data,” said Glenn Weinberg, vice-president for Sun’s operating platforms group.

Adding the Xframe 10 Gigabit Ethernet Adapter technology to Solaris helps to address the large performance bottleneck that interfaces between servers can cause, said Jag Bolaria, an analyst at The Linley Group.

“The demand for 10GbE is still relatively small, but S2io is getting in early with customers who will probably be looking at the technology before long,” he said.

S2io’s Xframe 10 Gigabit Ethernet Adapter will also give Sun an offering that many competitors do not yet have, said Bolaria. “It’s a good deal for S2io to align themselves with Sun, and it’s a good deal for Sun because they will have a jump on this technology,” he said.

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