LeWiz, a small San Jose-based networking company, is introducing network interface cards that can go 10 gigabits per second: The Talon3220 board is a two port card that operates on an 8-lane PCI-Express slot. Both ports can be bonded together to provide a theoretical 20 GB/s speed.
The cards are designed for server and storage area network environments. One possible application is to use the two ports to continuously replicate data across the network to a backup server. Since moving that much data can cause a serious strain on the operating system and CPU, LeWiz sells a TCP/IP Offload Engine (TOE) chip that takes care of the packet handling. The TOE allows the card to have up to 256,000 concurrent connections.
The cards come with drivers for Windows XP, Windows Server 2003 and the popular Linux distributions like Redhat Enterprise, Suse Enterprise and Fedora Core.
The cards are currenbtly available in sample quantities. Pricing starts at $990 for a single-port version. Within 60 to 90 days, Lewiz plans to make the cards available in volume quantities; prices are expected to drop to about $700 for customers who are purchasing the cards in 1000-unit quantities.
The Talon3220 dual-port version is initially priced at $1500, with volume pricing expected to drop to about $1000.