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IBM and Topspin link Infiniband lust

Together forever or at least five years

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Topspin Communications has signed up another big name for its Infiniband switches with IBM agreeing to resell the kit alongside its storage and server products.

Under the terms of the deal, IBM will sell the Topspin product for five years. This includes Topspin's current gear and future 10Gbit/s and 30Gbit/s kit. Sun Microsystems and Topspin forged a similar agreement last year.

"With this announcement, IBM has placed a major stake in the ground in its commitment to InfiniBand," said Mark Shearer, vice president of marketing and strategy for IBM Systems Group. "As the only industry-standard interconnect today with scalability up to 30Gbps, and remote direct memory access (RDMA), we are convinced that this technology will dramatically improve and simplify the way servers communicate."

As two of Infiniband's biggest backers, Topspin and IBM must be proud of themselves. The interconnect technology has never quite taken off as planned with onetime huge backers such as Intel barely mentioning Infiniband these days. Nonetheless, the technology lives on and it's performance remains fairly impressive.

IBM will use the Topspin switches to link numerous storage and server systems. The gear fits into IBM's On Demand strategy of connecting large numbers of systems to share data far and wide across a data center.

The Topspin kit has already been qualified with IBM's TotalStorage products and DB2. IBM is in process of qualifying its respective server lines. ®

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