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PCI Express

Overview#

PCI Express (Peripheral Component Interconnect Express), officially abbreviated as PCIe or PCI-e, is a high-speed serial computer expansion bus standard, designed to replace the older PCI, PCI-X and AGP bus standards.

PCI Express is the common motherboard interface for personal computers' graphics cards, hard drives, SSDs, Wi-Fi and Ethernet hardware connections.

PCI Express has numerous improvements over the older standards, including higher maximum system bus throughput, lower I/O pin count and smaller physical footprint, better performance scaling for bus devices, a more detailed error detection and reporting mechanism (Advanced Error Reporting, AER), and native hot-swap functionality. More recent revisions of the PCIe standard provide hardware support for I/O virtualization.

PCI Express is defined by its number of lanes, the electrical interface is also used in a variety of other standards, most notably the laptop expansion card interface ExpressCard and computer storage interfaces SATA Express, U.2 (SFF-8639) and M.2.

PCI Express format specifications are maintained and developed by the PCI-SIG (PCI Special Interest Group), a group of more than 900 companies that also maintain the conventional PCI specifications.

PCI Express is part of the Thunderbolt 3.x specification which combines PCI Express with USB 3.1 and uses the USB Type-C form factor.

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