Discussion in 'Article Discussion' started by WilHarris, 23 Dec 2003.
lol i hate microsoft
Re: The end of PCI-X confusion ^_^
Hmm?! PCI-E requires absolutely NO driver changes. It only changes the physical layer and not anything on top. Any version of Windows that supports PCI will support PCI-E.
I am a member of the PCISIG committee, so if anyone wants any specific info from the specifications, go ahead and ask. The spec is over 400 pages, so it is a wealth of information. I do not believe I am allowed to post anything from it, but I can paraphrase =)
Personally I would love PCI-X 2.0 on a PC mobo =) 32X the speed of conventional PCI.
PCI-X 2.0 Summary
Summary of PCI-X 2.0 Features
Doubles and Quadruples PCI-X bandwidth.
Full hardware and software backward compatibility to previous generations of PCI.
Builds upon tens of man-centuries of development.
Uses the same form factor, pin-outs, connector, bus widths, and protocols.
Enables 10Gb Ethernet, 10Gb Fibre Channel, InfiniBand™ Architecture, and other IO technologies.
Full RAS support including ECC.
Performance 32 times higher than the first generation of PCI.
On PCI Express some cool notes:
Native Hot Plug/Swap will be possible (no sideband signals)
Supports existing I/O drivers with no modification
Ability to configure fabric QOS arbitration policies within every component.
Re: The end of PCI-X confusion ^_^
That is COMPLETELY untrue. Intel will release .inf drivers with the release of Grantsdale Q204. Orm as JADS said, you dont need a driver change, cause they are interchangable. Personally i think Intel will release drivers for it and that'll be that. Longhorn wont be here till 05 at the earliest. Its Intel & partners that are moving this forward, not Microsoft.
Its like saying SATA wont be avaliable till Microsoft release longhorn, yet, we have drivers for it.
If PCI-X didnt require additional chipsets and additional wiring it would be available on consumer boards, but it isnt, cause people arent prepared to pay >£200 for a mobo. Also PCI-X requires HUGE slots = lots of space.
To the few people complaining about cards being hot stuff down and still the 'wrong way up', that's only true for ATX mobos.
BTX is the new standard which has everything on the left side of the case - now your upside down becomes the right way up without doing anything.
Don't have the links to hand but formfactors.org has the official spec and anandtech have a nice article on BTX.
I suspect that by the time PCI-E really comes strongly to market, most manufacturers will have switched to BTX as well so everything will be good!
Yea but it means buying a new case.. blah blah blah I like my case
Why? Nothing else changes apart from the swizzled the motherboard round a bit and changed a few holes. I reckon a new motherboard tray and you're sorted.
as i understandit when the BTX case/mobo design come standard as the mobo moves to the left of the case, the card then gets flipped so the hs would be on top
Ooook im gonna need some pics, or download acrobat reader for this pc cause i cant look at formfactors pdfs. Hmm how lazy do i feel right now?? Its 1:30am.. very.
It doesnt have a mobo tray either And what about those people who's cases no longer are sold (coolermaster ranges etc)?
Im just being evil now, ill stop soon.
AnAndTech writeup (informing with lotso pictures):
I don't know what BTX has to do with PCI-Express, Personally BTX is just an Intel case Design that favors their cpus over AMDs Chips and PCI-Express can fit into either one, And further BTX is not a Standard, Not yet at least. Me I won't adopt It as I not interested in It. Besides who really wants their cpu under their hdd and dvd/cd drives, possibly heating them up?
The images on AnAndTech i believe have a BTX mobo with PCI-E/X in it already if i'm not mixing up articles i read.
PCI-X does come in PC's today, right from apple.com/powermac
The Power Mac G5 comes with three PCI-X slots, giving you the benefit of the newest advance in PCI technology. The PCI-X protocol supports high-performance PCI devices, increasing speeds from 33MHz to 133MHz and throughput from 266 Mbps to 2GBps.
Just sayin it's not limited to servers right now, apple will lead, pc's will follow, as it has been from the begining.
Have you noticed how much the Apple Mac G5 costs? PCI-X is not limited to servers as it is found in several workstation boards as well (well before Apple ever released the G5) and the Mac G5 is a workstation pure and simple. Apple only called it a desktop because the title of 64-bit workstation had already been done
You may or may not also have noticed that Apple only does proprietry formats, they build a completely non standard size motherboard (nice for them, but ties you into that particular board) and builds a case round it.
You will not find PCI-X on a true desktop machine, the cost is simply prohibitive.
BTX has little to do with PCI-Express, it is simply the fact that motherboards made to the BTX standard are likely to wait till PCI-Express is available (no point changing twice when you can change once). It doesn't favour any CPU design over another, it is simply designed from the perspective of getting the maximum amount of heat out of the case that is feasible. The motherboard position is exactly like the WTX standard. It all means less fans and cooler interiors.
Thank you very much
Welcome new people! Please stay, your contributions are most valued
As for the Apple comment bfc.. hmm.. if it wasnt so proprietry (sp?) it would lead. Depends what apple you go for - the price of a G5 with your PCI-E must be the same as a decent sized workstation?? And at least then i can run win or linux on it and dont have to buy expensive MAC compatible parts (ie graphics cards that require a mac bios).
I agree with JADS - the mobo is HUGE! Its simply a workstation.
I spose it depends what the market asks for.
apple will lead, pc's will follow, as it has been from the begining
All the discussion here has been very good.
I would like to explain why Serial data is now faster then Parallel data. (On all types of buses, SATA, USB, Firewire, PCI-Express)
At first parallel data was faster then serial.
As you simply had more data wires to connect things together.
But as things get faster each and every signal wire starts to radiate energy in the same way as a radio transmitter.
This causes signals from one wire to jump over and interfere with signals on the next wire.
Parallel data also requires more power and more voltage to work at high speeds.
With the development of faster transistors serial signals can now run at speeds much greater then parallel signals.
-Serial signals have fewer wires, but run faster.
But with signals in the Mhz, and Ghz ranges serial data can still spill out and interfere with each other.
The way to fix this is called "Differential signaling"
Each single signal passes over two separate data wires, running in parallel to each other.
The signals are each 180 degrees out of phase with each other.
This means that when one signal changes to a binary 1, the other changes to a binary 0.
This in effect cancels out any radiating interference that the signals might have on other data wires.
Serial data flow also uses lower voltages, for a few reasons:
-Lower voltage means that the signal can go faster. (in Mhz)
(Voltage is a measure of how far an electron is orbiting away from the core of an atom, the closer to the core, the less distance it has to travel to get to a certain voltage, and the faster it can get there.)
-Lower voltage also means less power consumption, and cooler running devices.
-The lower the power, the less distance the signal radiates, and so the signal will have less effect on other signals nearby.
So by converting from a parallel PCI bus to a Serial PCI bus devices can run faster.
In my opinion the ultimate device connections would be a direct Hypertransport link, as that would allow for seamless connection from a device to the processor.
Sorry to upset you all, but that slot isnt PCI Express on that Tyan board you showing....
Those are bog standard 64bit PCI slots, as fitted to AMD760 Dual Athlon boards.
To back up this fact, lets have a look at a few pictures shall we
First up we have the dev shot of the Ati card, noticed the Key of the slot, short section, then a cut, then a long section runninging the rest of the cards length.
here we have the board you all raving about, the Tyan, which has a definate cut in the middle of the long section, clearly meaning the card wouldnt fit in such a slot.
And here is the every loving MSI K7D, the dual AMD Athlon board, clearly sporting the same PCI 64bit slots as the above Tyan.
This begs the question, if PCI Express is just a cut down version of the old PCI 64Bit slots that server boards have used for so long, why do they now need (what looks like) a redundent extra section at the back ??
Case Closed !
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