By Gopa Periyadan Vice President & GM, System & Software Design Services GDA Technologies Inc.
San Jose, Calif., June 27, 2003 – With the revolution of internet and evolution of distributed computing, the need for changing the storage topologies are increasingly felt by the users of the technology. Going into later part of this decade, the architecture of equipments to serve the functions of the "so-called computers" of 1980s and 1990 will be a highly integrated monolith of loosely coupled computing elements interacting with networking gear and storage attachments.
While forecasting this change is relatively easy, getting this into reality spectrum is a fairly tall order. Towards this, the research and development teams at GDA have been looking at various possibilities and combinations. To attack one issue at a time, first effort is made to allow access of quality storage (Fibre Channel ring) through the IP segment of the computing array.
To marry IP to Storage, one needs to allow the ethernet packets coming at high speeds (>1Gigabit/sec) from multiple entry streams, process it to remove the overhead in the payload and switch it to the storage interface of Fibre Channel without loosing the bandwidth available on both the interfaces as well making sure that the latency is not built-up along the way to throttle the CPU elements residing elsewhere. The interconnect element between the two binding partners has to be a very high freeway. Looking at the competing technologies, it was decided that HyperTransport has to be that interconnect.
To translate these stringent requirements into a cost effective product, GDA turned to latest in the Broad Processing and selected BCM1250 processor as the basic building block. It combines two processing engines, built gigabit ports and a HyperTransport interface for high speed I/O on the system level solution. To promote this NAS-SAN platform aggressively into the market place, industry standard CPCI form-factor board was chosen to enable value-added re-sellers, system integrators and OEMs to take advantage of this unique building block.
Final product implementation from GDA consists of two Gigabit Ethernet ports and one Fibre Channel port using a Qlogic device. The board also has the standard compute subsystem around the BCM1250 processor with 256MB unbuffered DDR memory, 1MB CAM and 8/16MB Boot Flash. A key design feature of the design of this platform is that it can be easily modified to work with other popular Network Processors in the industry.
Along with the hardware, GDA has ported Flash based firmware and board support packages for Embedded Linux. GDA is also working with third-party software protocol developers to allow this integrated platform to be customized for emerging protocols like iSCSI and to be able to meet the requirements of highly critical packet inspection security system designs at wire speeds. By working with GDA, OEMs and system integrators can bring new product offerings in the space in record time.
GDA is continuing to strong investments in applications and product designs using emerging processor and I/O interface technologies to allow our customers to shorten their time-to-market as well as to provide differentiation across products. GDA is very close to deliver on the Intellectual Property road-map of 10-Gigabit Ethernet interfaces which will be the next technology to use in the NAS-SAN product lines. Along with HyperTransport core, 10Gigabit ethernet MAC core from GDA will enable rapid deployement of high speed virtualized storages over IP.
About GDA Technologies, Inc.
GDA Technologies, Inc. is a leading design services company specializing in embedded, networking and consumer electronic designs. GDA focused on designing Systems, Boards, SOCs, ASICs, FPGAs and IPs from concept to product. GDA has successfully developed products in areas of Networking, Digital Video, Internet Appliances and Hand Held Solutions. GDA is headquartered in San Jose, CA and has satellite design centers in Sacramento, Boston, Chennai and Bangalore. GDA's web site is at www.gdatech.com.