MOUNTAIN VIEW, CA--(Marketwire - January 11, 2011) - The Linley Group today released the latest edition of its in-depth report on the 10G Ethernet controller and adapter market. Predicting robust 10GbE growth, the report estimates that 10GbE NIC/LAN-on-motherboard (LOM) shipments will surpass 16 million ports in 2014. The Linley Group's trademark in-depth analysis also reveals that server virtualization and SAN convergence are not only impacting growth, but significantly shaping suppliers' product and technology strategies, particularly as they seek to satisfy the need for multiple protocols.

"In the past, we pointed out that no single 10GbE design satisfied the requirements of all applications," said Bob Wheeler, senior analyst for The Linley Group and co-author of the report. "Entering 2011, however, four vendors are promising universal 10GbE designs that support full offload of TCP, iSCSI, and Fibre Channel over Ethernet (FCoE). The big challenge for these vendors is developing and supporting all of the software required for various protocol offloads and operating systems." The firm also believes that software maturity, in addition to feature and design requirements, will be a critical factor for OEMs when choosing 10GbE vendors.

With the transition to 10GbE, many new technologies are being added to Ethernet controller designs. Most of these new features are designed to offload processing from the host CPU and therefore, increase throughput or lower CPU utilization. These offloads are divided into three basic categories: stateless offloads that work with traditional operating system stacks; stateful offloads such as TOE that require stack changes; and virtualization offloads for environments such as VMware and Xen. For converged networks, new protocols such as FCoE, iSCSI, and iWARP (RDMA) also come into play.

Extensive Vendor Analysis Enables Informed Decisions

"A Guide to 10G Ethernet Controllers and Adapters: Fourth Edition," provides a uniquely detailed look at the vendors and products in this emerging market, with entire chapters dedicated to each of the leading 10GbE NIC and controller vendors. The report covers applications including LOM, standard adapters (NIC), blade-server mezzanine cards, and converged network adapters (CNA), and is written to provide the comprehensive information that technology professionals need to make informed decisions.

Key vendors studied in the report include Broadcom, Brocade, Chelsio, Emulex, Exar (Neterion), Intel, Mellanox, Myricom, QLogic, and Solarflare. Each vendor chapter includes company background information, full details of announced products, product-roadmap information where available, and The Linley Group's conclusions about the vendor and its products. The report also provides head-to-head comparisons of vendor products.


"A Guide to 10G Ethernet Controllers and Adapters, Fourth Edition" is currently available directly from The Linley Group. For further details, including pricing and a list of included tables, visit the web site at

About The Linley Group

The Linley Group is the industry's leading source for independent technology analysis of semiconductors for networking, communications, mobile, and wireless applications. The company provides strategic consulting services, in-depth analytical reports, and Linley Tech events focused on advanced technology topics. The Linley Group is also the publisher of Microprocessor Report, the leading technical publication for unbiased analysis of high-performance processor technology. For insights on recent industry news, subscribe to the company's free email newsletters: "Linley Wire," "Linley on Mobile," and "Processor Watch" and follow us on Twitter @linleygroup.

Note to editors: To speak to an analyst from The Linley Group about this report, please contact: Erika Powelson, Orr & Company, 831.424.1811 or email

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