PCI Express 2.0 Nears Completion

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According to an online source a two-month clock has begun ticking for the release of PCI Express 2.0, an update designed to help the ubiquitous computer communication technology with virtualisation, power management and high-end graphics cards.

PCI Express, version 1.0 of which arrived in 2003, lets customers plug devices such as network adapters into computers. PCI Express 2.0 brings a bevy of changes, starting with a speed boost, according to the PCI Special Interest Group (PCI-SIG) that governs the technology.

The central feature of the base version of PCI Express 2.0 is a speed boost. It doubles each serial line’s data transfer rate from 2.5 gigabits per second to 5Gpbs. But future enhancements also are in the works. One will support high-end graphics cards that slurp 225 or 300 watts of power” (CNET, 2006)

In addition, a feature called Input-Output Virtualization (IOV) will make it easier for multiple virtual machines, each with its own operating system, to share PCI devices such as network cards. Ultimately, this technology is expected to head towards Geneseo, which will let coprocessor cards such as graphics or encryption accelerators be tightly connected to central processors.

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