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October 20, 1997updated 03 Sep 2016 7:26pm

XYRATEX UNVEILS ALUMINIUM STORAGE RACKS

By CBR Staff Writer

UK storage manufacturer Xyratex Ltd is pushing into the 19 rack mounted market with Salient – an aluminium rack system said to squash in 50% more drives per unit than comparable products. The product, which has its own cooling system, is said to be the first use of aluminium for storage subsystems and takes up about half the floor space of standard Compaq racks, according to Xyratex. There are 12 drives in a standard 4u unit and the modular system has been design to accommodate future disk drive technologies. Ultra SCSI and SSA (IBM’s serial storage architecture) are out now for up to 108Gb storage and 80MB/s of bandwidth, but 10,000 rpm drives, LVDS (low voltage differential SCSI), and FC-AL fiber channel arbitrated loop options will all be supported in the future, says Xyratex. To get round the maximum cable length limitations of SCSI, Xyratex uses re-drive amplifier chips from Symbios Logic Corp. That problem will go away with the advent of fiber channel, which it expects to become dominant once standardization issues are settled. The company also has fiber channel test systems it sells to drive manufacturers, and recently launched a protocol analyzer for Gigabit Ethernet. Xyratex is the company formed by the management buyout of the IBM UK Ltd’s Havant, Hampshire manufacturing plant at the end of 1994 (CI No 2,566). It sells the 19 rack products into specialist vertical markets to video, oil and gas and financial customers.

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