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A New Router, a New Direction for a Router Maker - page 2

Penguins in the Corn

  • July 13, 2006
  • By Alex Goldman

At ISPCON, the company introduced its Envoy router, which is designed to handle one or two T-1 lines. The Envoy showcases the design innovation that Utter is so proud of.

The new WAN cards for the Envoy are based on USB 2.0, which costs less to manufacture than PCI or PCI Express, and has a bus capacity of 480 Mbps. The Envoy only provides USB and MiniPCI buses internally, so it also costs less to manufacture than modular PCI or PCI Express systems.

Utter says USB applications are only the beginning for ImageStream's new USB WAN modules. The modules can also be loaded onto upcoming PCI and PCI Express carrier cards, which can be deployed in PCI and PCI Express systems.

According to Utter, there are many advantages to the USB strategy. The most obvious is the ability to support USB, PCI, and PCI Express with a single line module. Utter says software for the USB WAN cards is simplified, because the same device driver can be used in USB, PCI, and PCI Express applications, which reduces software development time and maintenance costs for ImageStream and its OEMs.

USB is cheaper, he says, because it has a low pin count, and uses chipsets that are produced in volume for consumer PCs.

With WAN modules based on USB 2.0, ImageStream will be able to comfortably support full duplex OC-3 (155.52 Mbps) speeds (running out of bandwidth for faster connections).

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