Intel Launches Two Ethernet Controllers

The products are aimed at optimizing performance in server environments and virtualized data centers.

Intel on Monday introduced two Ethernet controllers it asserts are built to optimize I/O performance in server environments and virtualized data centers.

The 82598 and 82575 controllers distribute workloads across all processing cores within multi-core Intel Xeon processor-based systems.

The 82598 provides energy-efficient, dual-port, PCI Express-based 10Gigabit connectivity. The product addresses bottlenecks associated with server consolidation, and is geared for demanding enterprise applications, such as storage and high-performance computing. Power consumption averages 4.8 watts.

"Our new low-power, high-performance, dual port 10 GbE controller doubles past connectivity to better meet the ever-increasing server traffic loads of LAN and Ethernet Storage," Tom Swinford, general manager of Intel's LAN Access Division, said in a statement. Intel introduced its first Ethernet controller 25 years ago.

The 82575, on the other hand, offers many of the same features at 1 Gibabit connectivity. The controller is designed for use in Intel's low-profile, quad-port server adapters. Both controllers support Intel I/O Acceleration Technology, which increases I/O throughput and reduces CPU utilization in multi-core Intel processor-based servers.

Server consolidation through virtualization has grown so quickly in the enterprise that Intel engineers and other server architects have had to scramble to build more virtualization-friendly features in their designs. Two years ago, less than 5% of the data center had been virtualized. By 2010, that number is expected to reach 25%, according to Intel.

Intel rival Advanced Micro Devices is also working to improve the performance of virtualization environments. Virtualization today tends to impose a performance overhead as high as 20%, according to AMD.

The Intel 82575 Gigabit Ethernet Controller is available now. The 82598 is scheduled to ship in September.

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