Author: Barbara Schmitz, Chief Marketing Officer, MEN Mikro Elektronik
CompactPCI PlusIO (PICMG 2.30) is a 100\% mechanically and electrically compatible extension of CompactPCI (PICMG 2.0). It extends the current exclusively parallel interfaces by modern serial buses - CompactPCI becomes CompactPCI PlusIO. Physically, this is done at the J2 connector. CompactPCI PlusIO defines a fixed pin assignment for four PCI Express, four SATA, four USB and two Ethernet. In order to ensure signal integrity, a new J2 connector with additional internal shielding is used, which supports the higher frequencies even without additional ground pins. A single board computer with this pin assignment and the new J2 connector corresponds to the PICMG 2.30 specification but can at the same time be used just like a PICMG 2.0 board in a traditional CompactPCI system as a system slot board.
What Advantages does this offer to the User?
Until now, the availability of the fast serial signals via the backplane - i.e. to peripheral slot boards with the corresponding functionality - was in the center of reports about CompactPCI PlusIO. Another possibility is to lead these signals directly to a rear I/O module (transition module) and use them in the system or at the back. Such configurations are often used in PICMG 2.0 systems, but until now there was no uniform standard. This means that rear I/O solutions of different manufacturers were not intercompatible, the PICMG 2.0 standard having left open the assignment of the J2 connector. If you use a PICMG 2.30 board in a PICMG 2.0 system, the rear I/O signals are standardized.
Even applications for which CompactPCI will remain sufficient in the foreseeable future should use CompactPCI PlusIO system slot boards to ensure compatibility at the back. This has been fixed by the uniform J2 pin assignment in the PICMG 2.30 specification. In other words: PICMG 2.30 CPU boards are always exchangeable - independent of the manufacturer.