Broadcom Demonstrates Simultaneous NIC and Full iSCSI HBA Functionality

10/28/2004 - Broadcom Corporation (Nasdaq: BRCM), a leading provider of highly integrated semiconductor solutions enabling broadband communications, announced that it will demonstrate simultaneous network interface card (NIC) and full iSCSI host bus adapter (HBA) functionality, including iSCSI boot capabilities (running under Microsoft® Windows®), in a single controller chip at the Storage Networking World show this week in Orlando, Florida. This first-of-its-kind technology is extremely cost-effective because it provides complete SAN connectivity, including iSCSI boot capabilities, within a controller device capable of performing both data and storage networking simultaneously. By adding iSCSI boot capabilities to this solution, Broadcom now provides that missing element that has prevented devices in the past from performing multi-functional HBA or NIC tasks from a single controller chip.

iSCSI boot is a process whereby the operating system is initialized from a remote storage disk array across a storage area network (SAN) rather than from the locally attached hard disk drive. Broadcom's approach is more cost-effective and delivers the same benefits of any SAN, including better manageability, higher availability and lower cost of ownership, while removing the high acquisition costs usually associated with deploying SANs. By combining these networking and storage functions in a single controller device, Broadcom is demonstrating that iSCSI functionality can now be cost-effectively and broadly adopted as part of a standard server's data networking system. The functionality is achieved through the recently announced Broadcom® NetXtremeTM II converged network interface controller (C-NIC) chip, now sampling to leading OEMs.

Servers equipped with Broadcom's NetXtreme II C-NIC chip technology are now able to connect to SANs with complete iSCSI functionality including boot capabilities under Windows and Linux®. This technology eliminates the high up-front acquisition costs of adding storage networking to a server by allowing IT professionals to avoid having to purchase a server with a separate HBA controller pre-installed. In the past, IT professionals had to purchase separate controllers to perform simultaneous data and storage networking functions versus purchasing a server equipped with a NetXtreme II C-NIC, designed to provide both functions in a single network device.

The technology will also help OEMs simplify next generation blade designs by converging SAN connectivity onto a standard Ethernet fabric in the backplane while eliminating the need for a local hard drive on individual server blades. Broadcom is the first company to demonstrate this technology under Microsoft Windows with an architecture that conforms to Microsoft's WHQL (Windows Hardware Quality Lab) guidelines for simultaneous NIC and SAN functionality. This approach significantly reduces overall system design and does not require changes to existing operating systems.

At the Storage Networking World Show this week, Broadcom will demonstrate converged data and storage networking using a diskless server equipped with a single BCM5706 C-NIC device. The diskless server will boot off a remote iSCSI target and then will use the same network connection to access disk traffic and network traffic simultaneously. Since the TCP/IP (Transmission Control Protocol/Internet Protocol) and iSCSI protocol is processed on-chip, the BCM5706 C-NIC device offers iSCSI and network functionality with very little system overhead.

"This is yet another example of how Broadcom's NetXtreme II technology delivers state-of-the-art functionality to the Ethernet network enabling true convergence on a single fabric," said Greg Young, Senior Director and General Manager for Broadcom's High-Speed Controller Line of Business. "Our latest BCM5706 network controller is now able to deliver features that were previously only achievable with expensive, single purpose network equipment."

The BCM5706 is the first member of the NetXtreme II product family -- the company's next generation Gigabit Ethernet controller that includes an integrated TCP/IP offload engine (TOE), iSCSI host bus adapter functionality, remote direct memory access (RDMA) technology, and remote system management. The Broadcom NetXtreme II controllers are the first controllers in the industry to simultaneously perform storage networking, high-performance clustering, accelerated data networking and remote system management pass- through functions at a cost intended to promote the broad adoption of this technology.

iSCSI has been gaining in popularity since it is more cost-effective than other storage networking technologies like Fibre Channel and because it utilizes the same cabling and switching infrastructure common in traditional networks. With storage networks growing consistently over the past 5 years, IDC expects iSCSI-based storage networks to dominate the volume market in the next 5 years.

About Broadcom
Broadcom Corporation is a leading provider of highly integrated semiconductor solutions that enable broadband communications and networking of voice, video and data services. We design, develop and supply complete system-on-a-chip (SoC) solutions incorporating digital, analog, radio frequency (RF), microprocessor and digital signal processing (DSP) technologies, as well as related hardware and software system-level applications. Our diverse product portfolio addresses every major broadband communications market, and includes solutions for digital cable and satellite set-top boxes; high definition television (HDTV); cable and digital subscriber line (DSL) modems and residential gateways; high-speed transmission and switching for local, metropolitan, wide area and storage networking; home and wireless networking; cellular and terrestrial wireless communications; Voice over Internet Protocol (VoIP) gateway and telephony systems; broadband network and security processors; and SystemI/OTM server solutions. These technologies and products support our core mission: Connecting everything®.

Broadcom is headquartered in Irvine, Calif., and may be contacted at 1-949-450-8700 or at

Broadcom®, the pulse logo, Connecting everything®, the Connecting everything logo, NetXtremeTM and SystemI/OTM are trademarks of Broadcom Corporation and/or its affiliates in the United States and certain other countries. Microsoft® and Windows® are trademarks of Microsoft Corporation. Linux® is a trademark of Linus Torvalds.

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