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Old Dec 31, 2012, 06:22 PM   #76
KnightWRX
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Originally Posted by bedifferent View Post
Please don't assume I didn't read the article. I was referring to the ORIGINAL concept, hence "Light Peak". It's incredibly obnoxious to continually degrade people with that same line. Completely unnecessary.
The ORIGNAL concept had the same 10 Gb/s speeds that the copper connections are rated for per channel. The 100 Gb/s was farther along the roadmap. The switch to copper based connection was done to reduce cost and add the benefit of being able to also transport electrical current to peripherals, like USB.

(source: http://www.pcmag.com/article2/0,2817,2380890,00.asp

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Thunderbolt also runs across a copper connection. As initially envisioned in Light Peak, the Thunderbolt technology was supposed to run across an optical connection, although Thunderbolt was shifted back to copper for reasons of cost, according to Jason Ziller, director of Thunderbolt planning and marketing.
Quote:
Although an all-optical version of Light Peak is still on the roadmap, the copper connection does have one advantage: Power can be passed along it, and Thunderbolt can provide up to 10 watts to an external drive to power it. The optical version of Light Peak will only be used if extra-long cables are needed, Ziller said.
)

So I don't know where this whole "Optical = 100 Gb/s" idea came from, but that's farther away on the Intel roadmap for the technology, it never was supposed to ship originally, even if we had gotten optical Light Peak right then and there in 2011.
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Old Dec 31, 2012, 06:23 PM   #77
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Yeah I hope they don't charge by the foot!
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Old Dec 31, 2012, 06:29 PM   #78
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Fiber optic is just a transparent plastic cable with an LED and a photodiode at either end, right? Why not put the LED and photodiode in the computer and the device, instead of in the cable? That way, you only pay for the electronics once, no matter how many cables you buy…? That's exactly how optical audio works, isn't it?

Also, why can't power be passed along an optical cable? Just have two wires running along it, no? Power won't carry precise data so it's fine if it loses a few millivolts on the way…

Doesn't it seem like they're overcomplicating things just to make it a gazillion times more expensive than what it could be?
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Old Dec 31, 2012, 06:30 PM   #79
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Originally Posted by bedifferent View Post
Why do you do this? You wait a while on threads to comment
Sorry, I was out at the gym and stopped by a friend's house to wish him a happy new years before getting home and now since I'm eating supper, I'm getting around to reading MacRumors.

Next time, I'll make sure to refresh MacRumors even while out and about every 5 minutes to start following threads as soon as they are posted just to please you.

I found some erroneous statements about the Thunderbolt/LightPeak technology and I thought I would simply set them straight. There seems to be a confusion that Intel dropped a "gimped" version out instead of the full blown thing, but what we ended up getting was the full blown as planned 10 Gb/s thing, over copper instead of opticals.

This was always how it was planned, dunno where the confusion comes from.
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Old Dec 31, 2012, 06:45 PM   #80
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Originally Posted by Dwalls90 View Post
30m .. why? Lol

That's 100 feet.

Because of "noise"? #FirstWorldProblems ... mechanical HDD's are hardly annoying, and SSD is the future especially for thunderbolt.
98.4 feet to be exact.
Why metric? Because Americans are stubborn enough to stick with imperial while the rest of the world moves on.
And please call back when we can afford to get 20TB of SSD storage.
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Old Dec 31, 2012, 06:45 PM   #81
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Can you boot by Target Disk Mode on Thunderbolt? I can see this as being useful in dealing with system issues or copying large amounts of data from one computer to the next.
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Old Dec 31, 2012, 06:46 PM   #82
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Can you boot by Target Disk Mode on Thunderbolt? I can see this as being useful in dealing with system issues or copying large amounts of data from one computer to the next.
Yes.
In fact any and all external drives, even via Ethernet, can be turned into a target boot disk.
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Old Dec 31, 2012, 06:47 PM   #83
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Morshu9001 View Post
Also, just wondering, can you combine the processing power of multiple Macs efficiently using Thunderbolt and Xgrid?
Nope. T-Bolt is a PCIe bus extender, not a network connection.


Quote:
Originally Posted by charlituna View Post
We are getting ready to move to a building where they have a server room in the basement (earthquake proof) this kind of wiring would be awesome for us.
Please explain - my "earthquake proof machine room" is on the top floor of our building.


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Originally Posted by ArtOfWarfare View Post
Would it be possible to somehow have a copper + fiber optic thunderbolt cable, where the copper is used for delivering power and the fiber option delivers data, without requiring two seperate cables?
The wires to deliver power over long distances would be very thick, and expensive.

Plus, most interesting T-Bolt devices plug into the mains - there's little benefit to extending a few watts alongside the fibre.


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Originally Posted by KnightWRX View Post
This was always how it was planned, dunno where the confusion comes from.
Some people simply think that fibre must be faster, without realizing that the copper port is only 10 Gbps.
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Old Dec 31, 2012, 06:50 PM   #84
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Please explain - my "earthquake proof machine room" is on the top floor of our building.
Because, your IT department rocks?
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Old Dec 31, 2012, 06:51 PM   #85
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What would be the advantage of short optical T-Bolt cables?
None. But they would be the cheapest that Monster or Monoprice sold.
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Old Dec 31, 2012, 06:52 PM   #86
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Originally Posted by rmwebs View Post
Not in datacenters it wouldnt.
A "datacenter" means different things to different people. Just based on that fact your position is highly debatable.
Quote:
Generally you'll just have your servers racked up with power and ethernet - you dont need anything else.
Again that depends. Hooking directly to a storage array is not unheard of.
[/Quote]
In MOST cases you'll never hook monitors up to a server, and if you do it'll be from a crummy onboard gfx card (most likely VGA as well) for terminal use only.
[/Quote]
Which is at times highly questionable. A good GUI can be valuable in maintaining a server, especially if it is serving non traditional usage. This attitude that all you need is a terminal interface is usually supported by people with a vested need in protecting their jobs
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Really all the thunderbolt port is doing is changing your options from plugging a ~$50 VGA monitor along with a $2 keyboard directly into the server (so 2 ports) to just 1 thunderbolt, going into an expensive hub.
A gross over simplification.
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Really not worth it.
Again debatable. What if that data center is involved in movie production and the PC we are talking about is the cluster controller? If it is a small studio access to the cluster through a GUImight be a big advantage.
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Heck some places I've seen dont even have onboard graphics, and instead just have drivers for USB graphics cards that get plugged in when someone cant access the server via remote console.

---
There are certainly cases where that makes sense
Quote:
I assume you may have been talking about the Mac Pro server market, in which case it's still going to be the same situation (in 90% of cases, you never, ever should work directly on the server).
Again debatable.
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The only time I can see it being useful is for read/write to disks, but even then, there's a very tiny usage market for writing at 10gbps that needs to be done 30 meters away from the server.
I do think you are a little narrow in your thinking there.
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Old Dec 31, 2012, 06:58 PM   #87
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Originally Posted by wizard View Post
I do think you are a little narrow in your thinking there.
Thunderbolt is a narrow technology. It's host based, it's not a network based topology. Having peripherals dedicated to a host sitting so far away from that host has very little real world implementation scenarios where its actually useful.
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Old Dec 31, 2012, 07:07 PM   #88
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Quote:
Originally Posted by KnightWRX View Post
Thunderbolt is a narrow technology. It's host based, it's not a network based topology. Having peripherals dedicated to a host sitting so far away from that host has very little real world implementation scenarios where its actually useful.
In other words, NAS or iSCSI over 10 GbE or FC over 16 Gbps FC will meet the needs of many more people. (And all are here today....)

However, the "get the computer and disks out of a sound sensitive studio" is a good case, however niche. But Apple caters to niches for creative professionals, right?
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Old Dec 31, 2012, 07:14 PM   #89
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Quote:
Originally Posted by baryon View Post
Fiber optic is just a transparent plastic cable with an LED and a photodiode at either end, right? Why not put the LED and photodiode in the computer and the device, instead of in the cable? That way, you only pay for the electronics once, no matter how many cables you buy…? That's exactly how optical audio works, isn't it?
Those LEDs don't last forever! It is also possible that they are using lasers. Further making up fiber optic connections, that are reliable, is an art. Audio systems can get away with things a high speed connection can't.
Quote:
Also, why can't power be passed along an optical cable? Just have two wires running along it, no? Power won't carry precise data so it's fine if it loses a few millivolts on the way…
The voltage drop can be very significant at these wire sizes and current levels, in a nut shell it doesn't work well. Beyond that the power is going to supply the drivers for the optical cable.
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Doesn't it seem like they're overcomplicating things just to make it a gazillion times more expensive than what it could be?
Actually just the opposite. This provides a unitized component that supplies all the components of the interface that are difficult to maintain. If something goes wrong you simply replace the cable. It might be a surprise but optical cables have often been paired with modules that accomplish the same thing as the cable ends on these TB cables. The only difference is that Apple/Sumitomo got rid of the need to do a difficult field connection.
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Old Dec 31, 2012, 07:21 PM   #90
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The only difference is that Apple/Sumitomo got rid of the need to do a difficult field connection.
How did you involve "Apple" in this story? It's about Intel and Sumitomo, not Apple.

And what is the "difficult field connection" involved with plugging an optical cable into a SFP GBIC ????
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Old Dec 31, 2012, 07:30 PM   #91
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Originally Posted by KnightWRX View Post
Thunderbolt is a narrow technology. It's host based, it's not a network based topology. Having peripherals dedicated to a host sitting so far away from that host has very little real world implementation scenarios where its actually useful.
In many cases, as systems are implemented today, you are right. But who says they have to be implemented that way in the future? I can see having the display & human I/O in one location and the "PC" in another location making lots of sense. One example where this might make sense is in a small video production house where user Mac Pros can be co located with compute clusters.

Another possibility is separation of secondary backup storage from the data center. Maybe this isn't optimal for engineered data centers but there are many businesses stuck in decades old buildings with less than optimal data center locations. These centers are often crowded and suffer from conflicting needs. This thread caused me some laughter because some one mentioned an earthquake resistant data center in a buildings basement. I have a hard time seeing how a data center can with stand a building falling in on it.

The flip side of this is that the distance these cable cover isn't all that great. If you have ever had to route data cables through a building or machine you will understand how quickly comes to an end. In some cases 30 meters wouldn't even get you to the other side of a datacenter. I really don't see a big deal here, the optical cables will solve problems for people based on their individual circumstances.
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Old Dec 31, 2012, 07:31 PM   #92
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Originally Posted by AidenShaw View Post
In other words, NAS or iSCSI over 10 GbE or FC over 16 Gbps FC will meet the needs of many more people. (And all are here today....)

However, the "get the computer and disks out of a sound sensitive studio" is a good case, however niche. But Apple caters to niches for creative professionals, right?
I'd think those studios would benefit to having iSCSI or FC to connect their storage to multiple workstations at the same time though.

So it's, "get the computer and disks out of a sound sensitive studio for a single host at a time" case, which is even more niche.

Quote:
Originally Posted by wizard View Post
In many cases, as systems are implemented today, you are right. But who says they have to be implemented that way in the future? I can see having the display & human I/O in one location and the "PC" in another location making lots of sense.
We've had thin client computing for at least 40 years now. Thunderbolt need not apply.

Seems the only niche where this is useful is studios that require very quiet operation (not necessarily video production, really audio production) and frankly that's a small niche.
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Old Dec 31, 2012, 07:52 PM   #93
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Originally Posted by iVoid View Post
"For those who already own a Thunderbolt-enabled Mac, Intel notes that the existing Thunderbolt ports will be compatible with both copper and fiber optic cables, ensuring cross-compatibility once the new cables arrive."

Does that mean there are optical transceivers already in the Macs with TB ports? Didn't think they did.

Or is the copper to optical hardware inside the optical TB cables?

Either way, that would be great not to have to have new hardware for it.


THIS may let me buy a 27" iMac for my home. I keep my Mac, printer, external drives, etc in my office and run a long DVI cable to a monitor in my living room. Keeps the noise level down.

With this I could keep an iMac in my living room and run the optical TB cable to my office and be in good shape. I dred to think how much a 50' optical TB cable might be though... ::shudder::
The converter is built into the heads. Thus the longer head.
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Old Dec 31, 2012, 07:54 PM   #94
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The converter is built into the heads. Thus the longer head.
And the quoted 100$ per connector in the article. Doesn't seem to have phased people, this thing is going to cost 200$ before the actual optical fiber, just the connectors.
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Old Dec 31, 2012, 07:55 PM   #95
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How did you involve "Apple" in this story? It's about Intel and Sumitomo, not Apple.
The pen is mightier than the sword!!!

Seriously though do you think Apple doesn't have its fingers into everything TB related? Considering that the majority of the TB market is Apple related I'd have to say they have a vested interest in anything TB related.

In fact I wouldn't be surprised to see Apple release a Mac Pro system real soon now that can leverage these cables. Sometimes these announcements are timed for very specific reasons. Maybe that is wishful thinking on my part, but maybe Apple has a new monitor coming that will work in conjunction with this cable and the new Pro.
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And what is the "difficult field connection" involved with plugging an optical cable into a SFP GBIC ????
Maybe not difficult for you but for the market Apple sells into, it is an order of manitude difference or more.
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Old Dec 31, 2012, 07:57 PM   #96
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I bet Monoprice will soon offer these for great prices.
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Old Dec 31, 2012, 07:59 PM   #97
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Seriously though do you think Apple doesn't have its fingers into everything TB related?
Seriously, I don't think that Apple is even aware of this announcement.

Unless some support people are writing notes about how the optical link is not supported, and don't complain to Apple if you have issues.


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Maybe not difficult for you but for the market Apple sells into, it is an order of manitude difference or more.
Oh, I love the word "manitude" - it brings such gay thoughts to mind.
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Old Dec 31, 2012, 08:29 PM   #98
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Nope. T-Bolt is a PCIe bus extender, not a network connection.
But FireWire can act as an ethernet cable effectively, and I thought TB could too.
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Old Dec 31, 2012, 08:30 PM   #99
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I'm guess at least double the cost of a 'standard' thunderbolt cable? Also, I can't wait until monoprice has thunderbolt cables for 1/4 of Apple's outrageous price.
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Old Dec 31, 2012, 08:52 PM   #100
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Originally Posted by Westside guy View Post
Those of us who have to deal with server rooms on a regular basis can tell you noise from a peripheral is not a consideration - the places are already bloody loud.
Could mean cheaper DAS/SAN devices with 10Gb interfaces. I know we just spent an arm and a leg upgrading to 10Gb for our SAN/BladeCenter.

----------

Quote:
Originally Posted by rmwebs View Post
The only time I can see it being useful is for read/write to disks, but even then, there's a very tiny usage market for writing at 10gbps that needs to be done 30 meters away from the server.
If they made a DAS/SAN chassis with it, it might be cheaper than 10GbE. Also copper TB has a max distance of 3 meters. Your storage could be in a second rack making 3 meters too short.
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