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Western Digital to supply Hewlett-Packard with media interface module for high speed fibre channel switch.

IRVINE, Calif.--(BUSINESS WIRE)--Feb. 6, 1995--Western Digital Corp. (NYSE:WDC) Monday announced an agreement with the Hewlett-Packard Company to supply its highly integrated data communications subassemblies for high-speed, fiber optics serial links.

Western Digital's media interface modules (MIM) will be used in HP's recently introduced OpenSwitch Series I Fibre Channel switch for connecting powerful, high-end systems to network fabrics.

According to the agreement, Western Digital will provide HP with its MIM266, a 266 MBaud optical link module which enables data communication over distances of up to 2 km at 25 megabytes per second using short-wave laser technology.

The Media Interface Module product is a key component of the Fibre Channel communications link which connects storage subsystems with computers for high speed input/output. The Media Interface Module also links computers with other computers in a clustered client-server environment.

Fibre Channel is a scalable high-performance interconnect standard that allows for the fast transfer of large volumes of information between desktop workstations, mass storage subsystems, peripherals and servers within a large campus-sized area.

Instead of using a shared medium, Fibre Channel establishes point-to-point connection between devices and switches in order to provide full link bandwidth to each connection.

"Western Digital offered the most cost effective, reliable solution for the HP OpenSwitch Series I switch," said Bob Sandness, general manager of the HP's Canadian Networks Operation located in Toronto, Canada. "Fibre Channel supports the deployment of existing and new applications that are impossible with other technologies."

The HP OpenSwitch Series I switch is a high-bandwidth, low-latency digital switch supporting the ANSI X3T11 Fibre Channel protocol. It has been designed to the standard to be interoperable with other multivendor Fibre Channel products. It is a market first in its flexibility in supporting multiple classes of services at a very low latency.

The Western Digital MIM266 utilizes short wave laser technology at 780 nanometers for highly reliable data integrity. The MIM266 can be used with 50/125 micrometer fibre to enable data communications of up to 2 kilometers.

"Western Digital is committed to helping systems manufacturers solve high-speed interconnect issues by making available innovative, cost effective solutions for use in high connectivity environments," said Dan Brown, vice president and general manager of Western Digital's I/O Products product unit.

"Fibre Channel provides the highest performance of the serial interfaces available today, and we are pleased to be working with a market leader like HP in promoting such a capable technology."

HP is the second-largest computer supplier in the United States, with computer-related revenue of $19.6 billion in its 1994 fiscal year. HP has been delivering PA-RISC-based computers since 1986 with high reliability, data integrity, data availability and system availability.

Hewlett-Packard Company is a leading global manufacturer of computing, communications and measurement products and services recognized for excellence in quality and support. HP has 98,400 employees and had revenue of $25 billion in its 1994 fiscal year.

Headquartered in Irvine, Western Digital Corp. is a recognized leader in the design and manufacture of hard disk drives, integrated circuits, and graphics controller board-level products. The company markets these products to leading systems manufacturers and selected resellers under the Western Digital, Caviar, Paradise, and RocketCHIP brand names.

The company was founded in 1970 and has long been noted for its storage and graphics controller expertise and end-market systems-level design knowledge.


Notes to Editors: Western Digital, Caviar and Paradise are registered trademarks of Western Digital Corp. RocketCHIP is a trademark of Western Digital Corp. All other marks mentioned herein belong to other companies.

CONTACT: Western Digital Corp.

Brenda Bennett, 714/932-6006


Hewlett-Packard Company

Michele Reina, 408/447-5334
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Publication:Business Wire
Date:Feb 6, 1995
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