October 16, 2006 -- Currently dominating the desktop PC motherboard and graphics markets, the PCI Express protocol is poised to supplant PCI and PCI-X interface as the dominant high-bandwidth interconnect for the server, enterprise, mobile, workstation, networking, communications, industrial control, and medical equipment markets.
With more than 58 form factors, including Express Card, Advanced TCA, Compact PCI Express, Com Express, and a cable spec, the PCIe protocol is becoming ubiquitous. The PCI Special Interest Group (PCI-SIG) maintains the PCIe specification (along with the PCI and PCI-X specifications) and holds compliance workshops.
The PCIe subsystem is a point-to-point interface that replaces and overcomes the limitations of bus-based PCI and PCI-X standards. PCIe Generation 1 (Gen1) offers 2.5 gigabits per second (Gbps) speed with low-voltage differential signaling (LVDS), embedded 8B/10B encoding, dual-simplex signaling, and message-based serial protocol.
With plans in place to increase bandwidth to 5 Gbps in Generation 2 and 10 Gbps in Generation 3, the PCIe bus is expected to be the dominant high-bandwidth interconnect for several years to come.
By Doug Kern. (Kern is a Staff System Design Engineer in the Advanced Interconnect and Protocol Group (AIPG) at Xilinx, Inc.)
This brief introduction has been excerpted from the original copyrighted article.
View the entire article on the EE Times Programmable Logic Designline website.
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