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Monday, November 12, 2001
Western Digital to Demonstrate Serial ATA Hard Drives at COMDEX

Western Digital today announced it will showcase hard drives using Serial ATA during Comdex -- November 12-16 in Las Vegas. In a live demonstration with Intel, Western Digital will demonstrate fully-compliant prototype Serial ATA hard drives with native hot-plugability.

``Western Digital believes that Serial ATA will see broad adoption in the entry enterprise market starting in late 2002 and ramp to dominance in the desktop market starting in late 2003,'' said Richard E. Rutledge, vice president of marketing at Western Digital. ``We see future growth within the desktop, low-end server, and classic enterprise markets with Serial ATA.''

``Serial ATA's scalable performance, hot plugability and standardized connectors is expected to allow for better integration into enterprise markets over today's parallel IDE interface and its 100 Mbyte/sec (ATA/100) transfer rates,'' said Darrin Bulik, technical marketing manager at Western Digital. ``Suppliers of connectivity (host bus adaptors, RAID controllers) and storage solutions expect to be able to offer improved performance, connectivity, reliability, and value for the enterprise market due to Serial ATA's capabilities.''

Announced in August, Serial ATA is projected to be used to connect such internal storage devices as hard disks, DVDs, CD-R/Ws to the motherboard in desktop and mobile PCs, value servers and network storage. Serial ATA is intended to allow each drive to communicate directly with the processor, allowing for easier integration of Network Attached Storage (NAS) servers and enterprise storage applications. With current ATA 100 connections, each drive must share a common connection.

Serial ATA is also anticipated to eliminate the need for Parallel ATA's ribbon cables, which move data between devices within PCs. The ribbon cables are two inches wide and can only be 18 inches long. Serial ATA cables can be made three feet long and allow for more elaborate routing, which could aid in cooler-running PCs.

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