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12Gb/s SAS Data Storage Interface Advances; SCSI Trade Association Holds Plugfest Event While Specification Goes to Letter Ballot

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SAS is a proven platform for innovation and offers superior enterprise-class system performance, reliability, connectivity and scalability

SAN FRANCISCO – March 25, 2013 — In a digital world where data can quickly become “business critical” for server and data storage OEMs, system builders and end-users, the SCSI Trade Association (STA) today announced two important developments in the advancement of the 12Gb/s Serial Attached SCSI (SAS) storage interface. SAS is a proven storage interface based on the SCSI protocol that has the stability to tackle the most critical storage demands, without unnecessary complexities and integration challenges.

INCITS T10 Committee Releases SAS-3 Letter Ballot

STA, a member-run industry association established to support and promote SCSI technology, first announced the InterNational Committee for Information Technology Standards (INCITS) Technical Committee T10 is finalizing its work on the Serial Attached SCSI 3 (SAS-3) specification which includes 12Gb/s SAS and has completed letter ballot. It is expected to be forwarded to INCITS shortly after comments have been resolved.

A letter ballot marks a significant milestone in the standardization process. In addition to the significance of this event in formalizing the specification, it also marks the beginning of the implementation phase of 12Gb/s SAS during which companies will finalize their designs. STA expects volume deployment of 12Gb/s SAS products in 2013.

STA Holds Second 12Gb/s SAS Plugfest:

STA also announced the successful completion of the14th SAS Plugfest, the second for 12Gb/s SAS, held February 18-22, 2013, at the University of New Hampshire InterOperability Laboratory (UNH-IOL). Eighteen companies, including both STA members and non-members, participated in the Plugfest event.

“This Plugfest was notable for not only the impressive number of participants, but for the increased presence of solid state disk drive suppliers demonstrating the performance advantages that are obtainable with 12Gb/s SAS technology,” said Mike Fitzpatrick, Engineering Fellow, Toshiba America Electronic Components and chairperson of the SAS Plugfest Technical Committee. “Another point of emphasis was the testing of at least two generations of backward compatibility to ensure new SAS devices can be adopted as necessary.”

14th STA Plugfest Highlights:

All Plugfests have consistently provided a verification method to preserve existing storage investments, deliver a favorable end-user experience, demonstrate interoperability and support both forward and backward compatibility.

The 14th STA Plugfest was also highlighted by the following activities:

  • Physical level testing of 12Gb/s SAS technology
  • Testing of different lengths and types of cables between the initiator and the target
  • Interoperability testing of SAS products, including SAS Initiators, Expanders and SAS Targets
  • Compatibility testing of hosts with solid state drives (SSD) and hard disk drives (HDD) running at 12Gb/s SAS
  • Interoperability ramifications of the transmitter and receiver training algorithms inherent in the specification
  • Testing of SFF-8630 MultiLink SAS™ and the SAS portion of the SFF-8639 multi-function backplane connector.

“These important advancements of the 12Gb/s SAS data storage standard are further proof points that SAS has a robust roadmap with a history of execution,” said Marty Czekalski, president of the SCSI Trade Association and Interface and Emerging Architecture Program manager, Seagate. “SAS is both innovative and enterprise hardened and assures investment protection with a guarantee of generational interoperability.”

The following companies attended the February, 2013 Plugfest:

  Agilent Technology*
Amphenol Corporation
FCI America
LSI Corporation
Molex Inc.
TE Connectivity
Teledyne LeCroy
Texas Instruments
Western Digital
  * Non STA members

The next Plugfest is scheduled for the week of October 21, 2013. Please visit for Plugfest updates throughout the year.

About STA
The SCSI Trade Association was established in 1996 to provide a focal point for members to communicate the benefits of SCSI to the industry. STA promotes the understanding and use of Serial Attached SCSI (SAS) technology and influences the evolution of SCSI standards to meet future industry needs. The Association has a nine-member Board of Directors, which oversees the Marketing Communications and Technology Committees and all STA activities. To subscribe to Serial Storage Wire, STA’s free Serial Attached SCSI newsletter, visit: Please visit the STA website at, send an email to or call the STA office at (415) 561-6273.

Media Contact:
Linda Capcara