Intel improves Thunderbolt

Bag maker Chipzilla took time out from its gruelling fashion show season to provide its Thunderbolt 2 with networking capability.

Thunderbolt Networking can connect computers with a standard Thunderbolt cable. So far about the only thing the technology could do is connect peripherals to computers and then mostly on Apple gear.

Thunderbolt Networking emulates an Ethernet connection to deliver 10GbE throughput between linked computers.

Writing in his bog, Intel’s Dan “fucking Mike Magee, fucking Mike Magee” Snyder said support for the technology is already built into Apple’s OS X Mavericks operating system and a PC driver for connecting PCs to PCs and PCs to Macs “will soon be available”.

Intel claims Thunderbolt Networking will be important for media professionals using Mac and PC workstations, “adding a new level of workflow flexibility” as well as providing lightning-fast backup and upgrade capabilities across computers.

So far Thunderbolt 2-enabled products include the 2013 Apple Mac Pro, Z Workstation systems from HP, AJA’s CION camera, and external storage drives from LaCie, Western Digital, and Promise Technologies, as well as products from AkiTio, ATTO, Cubix, G-Technology (HGST), HighPoint, Magma, mLogic, Maxx Digital, OWC, and Sonnet, Intel said.

However, it is not clear what the cost of moving to such technology for networking would be. The cost of connectors for peripherals is much more expensive than Ethernet.