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G.Skill Releases Extreme Performance Phoenix Blade Series 480GB PCIe SSD

G.SKILL International Co., Ltd., the leading high performance memory and SSD designer and manufacturer, is excited to announce the Phoenix Blade Series PCIe SSD, the next generation of high-speed, high-capacity storage device. The Phoenix Blade PCIe SSD is the perfect storage solution for extreme gaming, professional graphic design, industrial design, and HD video & audio content creation.

By introducing extreme read and write performance, the potential of today's multi-core processors can be unleashed, resulting in higher productivity and performance, whether you are in extreme gaming or professional design.

Giada Introduces D310 DIY Barebones System

Giada Technology, a world famous manufacturer of compact desktop PCs, has announced the launch of a compact "Do-it-yourself" barebones-system: The D310. The D310 family is based on the 3rd generation of Intel Core processors. The D310 compact systems are simple Barebones Systems using the Intel Celeron Processor 1037U. The assembly only requires 2 screws; 1 screw to open the chassis and one to fix the hard drive, allowing maximum efficiency in building your dream machine. In addition, support for the Trusted Platform Module (TPM) which provides extensive security with high levels of data encryption, allows the use of D310-based systems in various applications in IT departments of large enterprises. The D310 system is also ideal for industrial control applications, smart traffic control systems, security and surveillance systems, commercial terminals and other similar applications which require small size, wide choice of interfaces, simplicity and reliability of use.

Phoenix Technologies Debuts New BIOS Developed In Collaboration With Intel

Phoenix Technologies Ltd., the global leader in UEFI firmware, products and tools, will preview major advances for BIOS technology and future developments at this year's Computex.

Phoenix next-generation BIOS featured on Intel's 2013 Ultrabook FFRD
As Intel's elected partner in developing the UEFI BIOS for next-generation devices, Phoenix is demonstrating its forward-thinking leadership in support of Ultrabook designs with a feature set that optimizes responsiveness, mobility, connectivity and power efficiency focused on delivering an extraordinary user experience. At Computex 2013, Phoenix will demonstrate Intel's next-generation Ultrabook FFRD featuring Phoenix SecureCore Technology 3.1 in certified compliance with Intel Rapid Start Technology, Smart Response Technology, Smart Connect Technology, Anti-Theft Technology and Identity Protection Technology.

Phoenix Technologies Launches EDK II Compatible UEFI BIOS

Phoenix Technologies Ltd., the global leader in UEFI firmware technology, products and tools, announced today the release of its flagship UEFI BIOS product, Phoenix SecureCore Technology 3.0. The third generation of Phoenix SecureCore Technology UEFI BIOS features cross-device, cross-codebase compatibility with native EDK II and EDK 1117 support for both x86 and ARM based systems, saving customization and maintenance efforts while reducing time to market for PC and mobile device builders.

"We have redefined Phoenix SecureCore Technology to maximize BIOS reusability and portability," said Steve Chan, Phoenix's Chief Technical Officer. "Phoenix SecureCore Technology 3.0 inherits its popular clean code tree with fully modularized design from previous generations; in addition, we re-architected the core for a universal build system which will help firmware developers in transitioning to EDK II, the next generation foundation for the latest UEFI and PI specifications."

Phoenix Technologies UEFI Enables Security and an IDE for ARM-Powered Server Systems

Phoenix Technologies Ltd., the global leader in UEFI firmware technology, products and tools, is announcing UEFI BIOS support for server systems based upon the ARMv8 64-bit architecture. ARM Techcon is being held at the Santa Clara Convention Center, Santa Clara, California, from October 29-November 1, 2012.

The Phoenix SecureCore UEFI provides a superior, proven solution for server systems, delivering an enhanced build environment that is independent from operating systems, flexible in compiler and assembler tools and capable of supporting modules and module packages. The benefits of SecureCore firmware include critical boot-level security, protecting the OS and entire system; rich networking and manageability; source code modularization and reusability; and significant build performance improvement. Phoenix began developing BIOS for server appliances and computing platforms in 1980, focusing on the need for reliability, performance, power management and security.

Gigabyte Socket AM3+ Motherboards Get UEFI BIOS - Finally

Gigabyte's entire fleet of AMD 9-series chipset socket AM3+ motherboards, launched in 2011 with AMD FX "Bulldozer" processors shipped with Phoenix AwardBIOS, even as other motherboard makers such as ASUS, MSI, Biostar, and Sapphire moved on to AMI Aptio UEFI BIOS. Gigabyte's AwardBIOS implementation did feature the company's biggest excuse for delayed implementation of UEFI across its entire product line, HybridEFI: a BIOS tweak that lets you boot from volumes bigger than 2 TB.

In the wake of second generation FX "Vishera" processors and Windows 8 with its UEFI-enhancements, Gigabyte finally decided to make amends to its socket AM3+ motherboard lineup, by introducing revisions of existing motherboard models, featuring AMI Aptio UEFI BIOS, and its dual-UEFI redundant BIOS technology that protects against failed BIOS updates. Gigabyte's UEFI-equipped AM3+ motherboards will follow revision number scheme from 3.xx, jumping from its canonical revision number scheme of 1.xx. For example, pictured below is the newly launched 970A-D3 Rev 3.0, which jumped from Rev 1.4. The revisions are largely identical to their predecessors, except of course implementation of the AMI Aptio UEFI BIOS and dual-UEFI feature. When buying, look for the revision number in the main barcode sticker on the box, and on the bottom-left corner of the motherboard itself.

HP Delivers Comprehensive Windows 8 PC Portfolio

HP today announced availability and pricing details for its new lineup of consumer and business PCs that are designed to work with Windows 8.

The new HP products, ranging from stylish notebooks and desktops to a tablet, leverage premium materials and a purposeful design philosophy to deliver a distinct HP look and feel.

Unique form factors, including a hybrid PC with a detachable screen, a business tablet with functionality-boosting HP Smart Jackets and an ultrathin all-in-one (AiO) desktop, enable users to take advantage of Windows 8 along with HP innovations such as HP TouchSmart technology. They also offer HP Connected Photo powered by Snapfish by HP and HP Connected Music powered by Meridian for convenient access to photos and music.

ECS Announces Its First Ever Modmen PC Modding Competition

Elitegroup Computer Systems (ECS) today announces it is teaming up with Thermaltake, G.skill and various media partners to announce its first ever worldwide Modmen PC modding competition. Starting on October 11, 2012, ECS is searching for the Modmen of the year. The Grand Prize winner will become a Taiwan millionaire (approx. US $33,333). To register for the contest head to www.ecs.com.tw. All submissions must be sent before February 28, 2013. To be eligible for this contest all contestants need to have an ECS motherboard purchased after 9/20/2012 or have an ECS Golden Board.

There are two stages of competition. The first stage takes place online. The top 10 case modders will be determined by a combination of online votes and ECS' own modding judges. The modder with the most votes will win US $1,000. The top 5 PC modders that qualify for the second stage of the competition, besides winning cash and prizes, will be flown to Taiwan and given accommodation to compete at Computex for a chance to win the Grand Prize – approx. US$33,333. During the competition the top five contestants will showcase their mods at ECS' booth and a panel of accredited judges and the audience will determine the grand prize winner.

UEFI Forum Releases UEFI 2.3.1 Specification Update

The UEFI Forum has ratified an update to the UEFI 2.3.1 Specification that adds important firmware considerations and addresses numerous engineering change requests. The updated Specification will be referred to as “UEFI 2.3.1C”.
  • UEFI 2.3.1C adds: An OS Indications Variable - OS/FW feature & capability communication – when implemented, allows end-users to make an OS menu request to enter BIOS setup after next reboot.
  • UEFI 2.3.1C adds: A mechanism which, when implemented, facilitates Open Source Operating System installations and OS- agnostic end-user configurations of retaining the factory default keys while in Setup Mode (see Specification for full technical detail of Setup Mode).
  • UEFI 2.3.1C removes: Runtime driver requirement on Network UNDI drivers - this allows UNDI drivers to be delivered in EFI Byte Code (EBC) Virtual Machine format supporting systems based on different processor architectures.

Intel Selects Phoenix Technologies as Collaborative Partner for UEFI BIOS Development

Phoenix Technologies Ltd., the global leader in UEFI firmware technology, products and tools, today announced it has signed an agreement with Intel Corporation to be its collaborative partner for BIOS. The two companies will jointly develop the new reference UEFI firmware for the Intel code base.

Phoenix will provide on-site engineers who will work collaboratively with Intel across various global locations to create the reference UEFI core code firmware that will greatly improve and standardize the code base support for all future Intel client platforms. These improvements will be included in areas such as tools, re-visioning schemes and other firmware structures that will support bringing customer products to market quickly and efficiently. This jointly created reference standard for UEFI BIOS on Intel platforms will optimize an OEM's ability to meet market demands such as long battery life, instant-on and always connected for ultra-thin client products, as well as reliability, scalability and performance.

HP Announces Ivy Bridge Desktop Line-Up

HP today expanded its consumer desktop portfolio, adding five models powered by Intel's 3rd generation Intel Quad-Core processors that deliver intelligent performance and enhanced built-in security.

Intel's new 3rd generation Core processors offer up to twice the HD media and 3-D graphics performance as well as significant processor performance as previous generation. Consumers will appreciate the added protection against viruses, malware and rootkits provided by Intel Secure Key and Intel OS Guard.

Phoenix Technologies Working on SCT 2.2 System Firmware for Windows 8

BIOS developer Phoenix Technologies announced its latest SecureCore Tiano (SCT) version 2.2 UEFI firmware that will be designed for PCs running Windows 8 operating system. The desktop client motherboard BIOS industry is currently dominated by AMI with its AMIBIOS and AMI-UEFI solutions, although Phoenix' AwardBIOS is still found on certain channel PC motherboards. It's with mobile computing devices that Phoenix' firmware solutions get a lot more prevelent. SCT 2.2 is looking to mark the company's bid to return to competitiveness in the PC motherboard BIOS market.

SecureCore Tiano 2.2 is a UEFI BIOS/firmware that conforms to UEFI 2.3.1 specifications, TCG 2.0, 1.2 (Trusted Computing Group) specifications, ACPI 4.0 and 5.0, SMBIOS 2.7, NIST-SP800-147, and USB 3.0 native, making it a feature-packed solution. In addition to Windows on x86 PC platforms (Win32, Win64, WoW64), Phoenix will develop firmware support for the upcoming Windows on ARM (WoA) platform. It is collaborating with ARM majors Qualcomm and Texas Instruments in this regard.Source: DigiTimes

Gigabyte Makes Up For Late UEFI Adoption with 3D UEFI Setup Program

With the Sandy Bridge LGA1155 platform, announced at the start of this year, the PC motherboard industry saw a wide transition to UEFI, a new board firmware that overcomes many of the limitations of the decades old BIOS, including the archaic user interface. The second biggest motherboard vendor by volumes, Gigabyte, wasn't part of that wave. It continued to use dated Phoenix AwardBIOS with a few riders that made it look like the company was dragging its feet over UEFI adoption.

First, it tried to address the 2.2 TB boot volume size limitation by coming up with an address-space tweak it ended up calling HybridEFI (which has nothing to do with EFI). Next, it addressed the need for a more intuitive (preferably GUI) setup program with a Windows-based CMOS setup program called TouchBIOS, it came with the Fisher Price looking interface that every other manufacturer's UEFI setup program had, topped off with touchscreen support. However, faced with the inevitability of facing lack of support for Ivy Bridge (more here) and Sandy Bridge-E, the company decided to take the plunge. It wants to come up with something that's a lot more functional than most others' UEFI setup programs that feel like the same old interfaces skinned. Enter Gigabyte 3D BIOS.

Apple Emerges Victorious Against Psystar, But Have They Really Triumphed? (UPDATED)

In a court ruling on Wednesday 28th September 2011, Apple’s assertion that any kind of ‘Hackintosh’ was, is and always will be, illegal, was conclusively affirmed. This will bring great dismay to Psystar customers, potential purchasers of other “alternative Macs” and the many PC enthusiasts who want to run the latest Apple OS on the high-spec rigs they’ve built themselves from hand-picked components. This ruling has unfortunately sounded the death knell for enterprising and surprisingly plucky upstart outfit, Psystar, who showed what could be possible with an open mind and technical skill. UPDATE after the jump.

G.Skill showcases its latest SATA 3 SSD, Phoenix II Pro, DDR3 Memory Kits

G.Skill International Co. Ltd., manufacturer of extreme performance memory and high performance solid-state storage, has released its latest SATA 3 6gbps SSD, Phoenix II Pro, based on the latest SandForce SF-2200 controller with the whopping random write speed up to 60K IOPS, and numerous ultra high performance memory series designed for the latest released platforms at Computex 2011.

G.Skill Displays Phoenix II SATA 6 Gbps SSD with Blazing 550 MB/s Speeds

G.Skill showed off its fastest SATA solid state drive (SSD) at CeBIT, the Phoenix II series. Based on the SandForce SF-2000 series controller, Phoenix II pushes the limits of SF-2000 series in terms of throughput, and advertises some of the highest transfer rates for the chipset: 550 MB/s read, and 500 MB/s write. The company even validated these speeds using a session of ATTO disk benchmark. The 120 GB Phoenix II SSD was connected to an AMD SB850 SATA 6 Gb/s controller, on a system headed by Phenom II X6 processor. G.Skill said that the 120 GB model would be priced at €299.

Source: Hexus.net

G.Skill Launches New Phoenix Pro SSDs in 40 GB, 80 GB, and 160 GB Capacities

G.Skill International Co. Ltd., manufacturer of extreme performance memory and solid-state storage with solid quality, has today added three new capacities to its ultra-high performance Phoenix Pro series SSD, including 40GB, 80GB and 160GB models.

Based on the popular SandForce SF-1200 SSD controller that has been tuned to deliver an unparalleled performance in 4k random write speed up to 50,000 IOPS, G.Skill's Phoenix pro SSD family has been the international award winning drive of choice since its recent debut at Computex 2010.

G.Skill Pushes DDR3 to 2500 MHz at CeBIT

We dropped by the G.Skill booth and they are showing off a few systems with their memory in it. While they have seven different configurations to display, only three of them are out each day, so they are rotated around throughout the show. All of them are interesting, but some more than others. First off there is a dual channel kit running at 2500 MHz in combination with an Asus P55 board and Intel i7-860 CPU. This memory is just for show and will not be sold in retail. Then there is a high capacity kit with six modules running at 2000 MHz with CL6 on an Asus X58 board, while the last system is very interesting as well, with 1600 MHz memory and a set CAS latency of 5-8-5. We did not get pictures of their 24 GB kits up and running, as they were not on that day. G.Skill is also displaying their Phoenix Sandforce SF-1200 based SSD.

Business PCs Arrive with New Intel Core vPro Processor Family

Intel Corporation today unveiled its 2010 Intel Core vPro processor family to meet the needs of businesses of all sizes for PCs with greater, more flexible performance, theft prevention and cost savings in a rapidly changing business computing environment. These and several other capabilities are at the heart of many new Intel-based business laptop and desktop computers beginning to roll out from computer manufacturers worldwide.

The Intel Core vPro processors arrive as business computing evolves with the emergence of video, Internet telephony, social networking and other heavyweight applications – in many cases running at the same time – making a computer's performance an even bigger priority.

New Phoenix Instant Boot BIOS Starts Loading the OS in Under a Second

System BIOS vendor Phoenix Technology, the company behind the popular Award BIOS software found on several PC motherboards, has come up with a new highly-optimized implementation of UEFI (Unified Extensible Firmware Interface), that can boot the OS in under one second. This cuts time of the arbitrary 5~15 second (typical) POST process. With this time saved, system startup times are significantly reduced. Startup times are further reduced by the optimized startup procedure on Windows 7.

To put this to test, a Dell Adamo notebook with the technology, was able to reach the Windows Desktop in 20 seconds from the push of the power button, while Lenovo T400 notebooks with faster SSDs reached the Desktop in under 10 seconds. The technology should be out pretty soon.

Source: Engadget

Phoenix Technologies Announces Agreement With ASUS to Accelerate HyperSpace Adoption

Phoenix Technologies Ltd., the leader in PC 3.0 products, services and embedded technologies, today announced a partnership with ASUS to accelerate the adoption of its award-winning HyperSpace product by consumers worldwide. HyperSpace is a revolutionary new instant-on and always-connected application environment that makes operating a mobile PC as easy and efficient as operating a cell phone.

Based on the partnership agreement, ASUS will incorporate HyperSpace into its next generation notebooks. With HyperSpace-installed notebooks, users can instantly launch important web-based applications (before Windows ever boots), automatically connect to the best available network, dramatically extend battery life and achieve new levels of uptime and security protection. HyperSpace is available for download at hyperspace.com

Phoenix Planning to Bypass Windows

Phoenix Technologies, a company well-known for providing the BIOSes used by numerous motherboard manufacturers, is planning a new technology which could allow users to bypass Windows when launching regularly used applications. Known as HyperSpace, Phoenix wants to give users the ability to load software such as email clients, web browsers and media players without the need to first load Windows – this means the programs load almost instantly, saving the user quite a bit of time if they’re in a hurry. The company eventually sees the potential for companies like Dell and Lenovo to ship PCs with a range of software from word processors to instant messaging pre-loaded so that they can be launched via HyperSpace with Windows only being required for the more complex applications and multitasking. This technology could also see a dramatic increase in battery life – when running using HyperSpace, some programs will use just half the power compared to when they are launched in Windows. Woody Hobbs, CEO of Phoenix Technologies, said the following:
As Windows gets more and more complex, we've seen startup times get longer and longer. If I go to the airport and try to connect to a Wi-Fi network, I'm waiting for five minutes just to connect. That's ridiculous - people usually just give up and use their cell phones or PDAs.

Source: Wired News
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