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  Adaptec 29160 SCSI Card 
  Jul 20, 2001, 10:00am EDT 

Ultra160 Overview, The SCSI vs. IDE Discussion

By: Sander Sassen

Today's competing non-SCSI solutions lack the features and connectivity needed to provide a comprehensive I/O interface solution. SCSI is the only high-performance interface that allows devices operating at different speeds to be connected to the same bus, and the only I/O solution that offers a method for connecting both internal and external SCSI devices. UDMA/IDE only supports two drives per channel, and can only handle a small range of internal devices.

Furthermore, although UDMA/IDE has come a long way since its initial introduction, all mission-critical storage subsystems use SCSI, as the MTBF rating (Mean Time Before Failure, the average time a product of a given design can last without requiring repair or replacement) is much higher with SCSI. As a result of these factors, all high-end harddisks use the SCSI interface.

Also, a SCSI-based system imposess much less overhead on the main CPU because all data I/O and the controlling and device handling is handled primarily by the adapter, which frees the CPU to fetch data and run applications.

Overall, while lower cost makes UDMA/IDE viable for less demanding computer environments such as basic desktop PCs, it lacks the power and the broad range of connectivity features needed by workstation or server configurations.

1. Introduction
2. Ultra160 Overview, Performance
3. Ultra160 Overview, Data Integrity
4. Ultra160 Overview, The SCSI vs. IDE Discussion
5. Adaptec SCSI Card 29160
6. Technical Support
7. Conclusion

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