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The Emulex and QLogic 8 Gb Fiber Channel Expansion Cards (CIOv) for IBM BladeCenter enable high-speed access for IBM blade servers to connect to a Fiber Channel Storage Area Network (SAN). In addition to enabling the benefits of the PCIe architecture, these adapters are both based on the innovative CIOv form factor, which means that the blade server can also support additional I/O technologies such as additional NIC, Fiber, InfiniBand, and other adapters.
When compared to the previous-generation 4 Gb adapters, the adapters help provide up to twice the throughput speeds for Fiber Channel traffic. This results in clients being able to manage increased amounts of data and possibly a reduced hardware expense; for example, in bandwidth-constrained Microsoft Exchange environments, using 8 Gb adapters and switches, clients can deploy up to 68% less adapter and switch hardware to support the same number of users as 4 Gb. Additionally, each adapter features two ports from the blade server to the Fiber Channel switch, helping provide constant access to the SAN data.