[rescue] Total corporate madness (

Dave McGuire mcguire at neurotica.com
Mon Aug 4 16:01:37 CDT 2003

On Monday, August 4, 2003, at 03:54 PM, Frank Van Damme wrote:
>>> It works, it's SCREAMING fast, it's standardized, it's supported, and
>>> it's readily available.
>> Oh, and it's cheap, if you can find T-cards.  But the adapters and
>> devices are cheap, and multimode fibre is practically disposable
>> compared to 68-pin SCSI cables.
> Wait a second wait a second. What are T-cards? What's the difference 
> between
> an adaptor and a controller?

   A T-card is a "test card"...FC-AL drives are generally only used in 
large enclosures (i.e. disk arrays), not installed in a desktop machine 
for individual use like SCSI or ATA/IDE.  A T-card lets you use FC-AL 
drives in that configuration.  It's a very simple card which basically 
amounts to a cable adapter of sorts.  The only real restriction is that 
to use a T-card, your FC-AL interconnect must be copper, not 
fiber...FC-AL can be either.

   Adapter vs. controller...ahh the imprecision of english.  The proper 
name for an FC-AL controller is "HBA", for "host bus adapter".  While 
"adapter" can refer to anything from an RS232 gender changer to a disk 
controller.  It's pretty variable.

   In the context quoted above, however, I believe Jon was referring to 
controller cards.  They're much more expensive than, say, a Taiwanese 
IDE board, but that's because they DO more than Taiwanese IDE boards.

   You can get Adaptec QLA-2100 boards (an old, but plenty good 64-bit 
66MHz PCI FC-AL HBA) on eBay for less than $40 nowadays.  They're 
available with both fiber and copper interfaces.


Dave McGuire                 "You don't have Vaseline in Canada?"
St. Petersburg, FL                     -Bill Bradford

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