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Single-Chip Gigabit Ethernet Controller

Intel Unveils World’s First Single-Chip Gigabit Ethernet Controller

Integrated Chip is 50 Percent Smaller, Uses 50 Percent Less Power and Supports PCI-X

Intel Corporation today began sampling at the Intel Developer Forum in San Jose, the world’s first single-chip Gigabit Ethernet controller, an advanced semiconductor device used to help direct the flow of data across networks. The new single-chip controller will help accelerate the deployment of Gigabit Ethernet networks by greatly simplifying the design process for systems designers.

Gigabit Ethernet networks allow the transmission of one billion individual bits of information per second. Gigabit Ethernet products from other companies require a complex board-level design to accommodate the multiple chips needed to carry out the same functions as Intel’s single-chip solution.

The Intel® 82544EI Gigabit Ethernet Controller is about the size of a quarter and is more than 50 percent smaller than previous generations of controllers. In addition, the new device uses 50 percent less power**, generates less heat and can help improve the reliability of systems. This makes it easier and less expensive for original equipment manufacturers (OEMs) to build Gigabit Ethernet network connections directly into servers, workstations or networking devices using a type of connection called LAN-on-motherboard (LOM).

“For OEMs, the real estate on a motherboard is critical,” said Mark Christensen, vice president and general manager of Intel’s Network Communications Group. “Because motherboards have limited room for components, designers often need to trade performance and functionality for space. Intel’s new single-chip solution enables OEMs to pack more capabilities and higher performance into networking equipment while simplifying the design and using a minimum of space.”

Intel is the worldwide leader in Ethernet and Fast Ethernet LOM connections, which are the fastest-growing type of network connection, having grown 38 percent in the third quarter of 2000, versus 11 percent for network adapter cards***. Intel’s single-chip controller is intended to help drive the rapid deployment of Gigabit Ethernet LOM connections.

The Intel 82544EI Gigabit Ethernet Controller also includes support for the PCI-X bus, to provide faster and more efficient networking. PCI-X helps alleviate communication bottlenecks within systems, improving the overall performance of the network.

Intel network connections also support the broadest range of operating systems in the industry, including Microsoft Windows NT*, Microsoft Windows* 2000, Microsoft Windows XP, Linux*, Novell Netware*, SunSoft Solaris* and SCO UnixWare*.

Designed for compliance with the Institute of Electrical and Electronic Engineers 802.3ab and 802.3z specifications, Intel’s single-chip controller provides support for copper- or fiber-based connections at speeds of 10, 100 or 1000 Mbps. Additional information is available at

The Intel 82544EI Gigabit Ethernet Controller is now sampling to server, workstation and networking OEMs. It will be broadly available later this year.

Intel Developer Forum
The Intel Developer Forum is Intel’s premier technical conference, featuring more than 250 sessions and hands-on labs, along with numerous demonstrations of cutting-edge products and technologies. Now in its fifth year, the semi-annual conference provides hardware OEMs, and independent hardware and software vendors with in-depth

information on Intel technologies and initiatives. Visit for more information, including on IDFs held outside the United States. Subscribe to the Intel Developer Update Magazine at for updated information throughout the year.

Intel, the world’s largest chip maker, is also a leading manufacturer of computer, networking and communications products. Additional information about Intel is available at

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