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Recent SAS Plugfest Advances Market Readiness

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Large “System Builds” include More than 110 Drives

San Francisco, May 10, 2005 — The SCSI Trade Association (STA), a member-run industry association established to support and promote SCSI technology, announced today that the first Serial Attached SCSI (SAS) plugfest of 2005, held April 25-29 at the UNH-IOL test lab, exceeded all expectations. For the 18 attending STA member companies, the interoperability results were very favorable for vendors planning to introduce their system products in the next few months (see page two for a list of attending STA members).

The recent plugfest saw the largest SAS “system builds” to date. The system builds contained more than 110 drives and were assembled through the cooperation of controller, HBA, expander, enclosure, drive and test equipment vendors. The vendors worked together to demonstrate the maturity of SAS technology and to verify that components and subsystems from many vendors will seamlessly interoperate. In addition to the large system tests, several new physical layer tests, developed by UNH-IOL, were inaugurated to help companies ensure that they have adequate design margins in their physical level designs.

SAS market readiness marks the culmination of three years of technology development, interoperability testing, product development and manufacturing. SAS products are ready for market due, in part, to three successful 2004 plugfests that were timed to support the SAS technology development schedule.

Harry Mason, President of STA and Director of Industry Marketing for LSI Logic, stated, “The large system builds brought together a representative cross section of products from multiple suppliers to test interoperability of the SAS interface. Demonstrating a functioning system with a mixture of SAS and SATA drives, coupled with expanders and host bus adapters from several suppliers, was a notable milestone in readying SAS systems for market introduction throughout the balance of this year.”

“SAS market growth will depend on the commitment and ongoing support of major OEMs,” said John Monroe, a research vice president at Gartner. “At the moment, this support appears to be strong. If qualifications go smoothly and SAS-based storage systems are delivered as planned, SAS will become the largest volume multi-user HDD interface during 2007. Despite significant incursions and continuing growth in Fibre Channel and SATA shipments, Gartner predicts that SAS will remain the largest volume multi-user HDD interface, with a greater than 40 percent share in 2009, becoming the principal heir to an enormous SCSI legacy.”

The plugfest just completed was the first of two planned for 2005 to provide interoperability testing of all SAS components, subsystems and systems before they are purchased and deployed in users’ data centers. Large SAS storage systems are expected to enter the market in the next few months, as the rate of SAS product introduction accelerates. Expectations are that by summer of 2005, a significant number of system and subsystem products will be introduced to the market.

About STA
The SCSI Trade Association was established in 1995 to provide a focal point for members to communicate the benefits of SCSI to the industry. STA promotes the understanding and use of SCSI technology and influences the evolution of SCSI standards to meet future industry needs. The Association has a nine-member Board of Directors that oversees the Marketing Communications and Technology Committees and all STA activities. To subscribe to Serial Storage Wire, STA’s free Serial Attached SCSI newsletter, please visit: For more information, please visit the STA web site at, send an email to or call the STA office at (415) 561-6273.

STA Member Companies Attending the Plugfest:
BizLink Technology
Catalyst Enterprises
Hitachi Global Storage Technologies
LeCroy / CATC
LSI Logic
NEC Electronics
Promise Technology
Xyratex Technology

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For further information, contact:

Press Contacts
SCSI Trade Association
Lea Schwartz
Point Public Relations
(970) 225-3753
UNH-IOL Contacts
Chris Volpe
UNH-IOL Public Relations Manager
(603) 862-4349
David Woolf
SAS Test Engineer
(603) 862-4349