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March 3, 2010

Intel expands Atom platform to NAS devices

Supports Microsoft Windows Home Server and open source Linux operating systems

By CBR Staff Writer

Intel has launched its first Atom processor-based platform optimised for networked home and small office/home office (SOHO) storage devices. It consists of Intel Atom processor D410 single-core or D510 dual-core and the Intel 82801IR I/O Controller.

Reportedly, the storage vendors LaCie, LG Electronics, QNAP, Synology and Thecus plan products based on the new Intel Atom processor-based platform.

Intel said that the home server and SOHO network-attached storage (NAS) devices based on the new Intel Atom processor-based platform act as centralised hubs that organise, manage, protect and share documents, photos, videos and music throughout the home and small office.

Powered by Intel Atom processor D510, the LG’s N4B2 NAS device performs fast reads and writes of large data files and allows up to 20 users to simultaneously stream high-definition-level (30Mbps) data within a local network, the company said.

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According to Intel, the new platform features six PCI Express lanes, 12 USB 2.0 ports, a port multiplier function and eSATA ports. In addition, it also features hot plug capabilities for capacity upgrades and an integrated gigabit ethernet MAC controller for data transfers to and from the home server or small office NAS device. The storage platform also offers the flexibility to support Microsoft Windows Home Server and open source Linux operating systems.

Intel also unveiled two single-core Intel Atom processors N450 and D410, and the dual-core Intel Atom processor D510, for embedded devices. The three processors are paired with an I/O controller designed for the embedded market for a 2-chip offering that provides I/O capabilities and supports high-bandwidth interfaces including PCI Express, PCI, SATA and USB 2.0 connectivity.

Seth Bobroff, general manager of storage at Intel Data Centre Group, said: NAS systems have traditionally been found in businesses to manage, store and access data. Today, households and small offices have an ever-increasing number of computers, laptops, netbooks and mobile phones that create and consume digital content.

“This advancement in mobility coupled with the explosive growth of data and media are creating the need for centralised, easy-to-use network storage solutions for the home and small office.

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