Browse Prior Art Database

Network Interface Card(NIC) in Thin-Client Network Computers and Pervasive Network Devices

IP.com Disclosure Number: IPCOM000014806D
Original Publication Date: 2000-Jan-01
Included in the Prior Art Database: 2003-Jun-20
Document File: 1 page(s) / 41K

Publishing Venue

IBM

Abstract

Network Interface Card(NIC) in Thin-Client Network Computers and Pervasive Network Devices

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Network Interface Card(NIC) in Thin-Client Network Computers and Pervasive

Network Devices

Disclosed is a method of supporting various network interfaces in Network Computers by using NIC cards instead of having unique motherboards with each type of network interface integrated.

A thin-client network computer has a strong customer appeal to be thin like the laptop computers however at much lower cost. In addition network computers comes in several models to support different LAN types, for example, Ethernet, Token Ring and Twin Axial.

This invention uses a small form factor NIC daughter card that mates with the motherboard with a board to board connector instead of having unique motherboard versions for each LAN models. This method reduces engineering development expense by only developing one motherboard design and a common set of NIC daughter cards which are used in whole series of network computer products from low to high end. In addition, new market can be quickly entered by just developing the NIC card, for example, wireless LAN, 1394, cable modem, ADSL, DSL, or an home network using AC powerline.

IBM Network Station Model 300 and 1000 have separate and unique motherboards to support 3 different LAN tyes, Ethernet, Token Ring and Twinax. Only difference between these boards is the LAN interface circuitry. Eighty percent of the network computer business is in the Ethernet.

Hence, it make sense to integrate the Ethernet interface circuitry on the motherboard...