Microsoft and Tut Systems to Deliver New High-Speed In-Home Networking

REDMOND, Wash., and PLEASANT HILL, Calif., Nov. 3, 1997 — Microsoft Corp. and Tut Systems Inc. today announced the signing of a cooperative marketing agreement centered on Tut’s innovative HomeRun
networking technology. Tut, an industry leader in high-speed connectivity over copper wire, and Microsoft, the worldwide leader in software for personal computers, will work with third-party vendors to release consumer hardware and software products that enable a true plug-and-play, Ethernet-compatible platform in the home. The HomeRun-based platform will enable multiple PCs, peripherals and other devices, such as IP telephones, to simultaneously connect to each other and to high-speed Internet and intranet services. The HomeRun technology offered by Tut provides a low-cost network over existing in-home wiring, without modification and without disturbing existing telephone service.

Stimulated by telecommuters and students with PCs, the “multi-PC home” is the fastest growing segment of the home PC user. According to Lisa Pelgrim, senior analyst at Dataquest, “There are more than 11 million multi-PC homes in the United States alone, and we expect that number to continue to grow over the next few years. Couple this with a need to distribute high-speed Internet access through the home, and we see a real need for a simple, low-cost solution for home networking.”

“Part of the power of computers is the ability to share information and ideas, yet there’s no easy way to do that in today’s consumer market,” noted Steve Madigan, senior director of the Windows® operating systems division at Microsoft. “We want to make it easy for consumers to use Windows and related products throughout the home. Tut’s HomeRun has demonstrated an ability to drive data at high speeds over complex copper connections, providing a fast, easy and inexpensive in-home network for existing and new Microsoft® products, such as Windows 95 and Windows 98.”

Craig Bender, vice president of marketing for Tut Systems, said, “HomeRun is a breakthrough approach to the problem of in-home information delivery and resource sharing. It is exciting to be working with an industry-leading partner in Microsoft and a broad range of PC, peripheral and networking manufacturers and network service providers to make this happen.”

The HomeRun Breakthrough

HomeRun creates 1.3 Mbps Ethernet-compatible LANs using existing in-home telephone wiring. The HomeRun technology is Tut’s most recent addition to its industry-leading array of FastCopper
™technologies. HomeRun supports the complex, random-tree type of wiring topologies typically found in the home. HomeRun connects multiple devices across distances of up to 500 feet. This is 200 feet greater than distances achieved by standard 10Base-T Ethernet. Also, HomeRun does not require Ethernet hubs or new Category 5 wiring. HomeRun requires no special terminations, filters or splitters. It uses only a single pair of existing phone wires to make its connection, without disturbing any normal telephone service that might be using those same wires. HomeRun is fully compatible with the Ethernet MAC layer standard (IEEE 802.3 CSMA/CD with a new physical layer) and meets FCC regulatory requirements (Part 15 Class B and Part 68).

Current HomeRun products include the following:

  • Standalone 10Base-T to HomeRun Adapters for use with any existing device having a 10Base-T interface

  • PC network interface cards (NICs) for direct connection of PCs to the in-home wire

These products are available immediately as part of a HomeRun evaluation kit that Tut is offering to potential OEM partners. Tut is also providing a technology licensing program for partners that want to include HomeRun technology in their products.

Tut Systems is an industry pioneer in delivering high-speed data connectivity products. Tut’s FastCopper technology has enabled Tut to be positioned as the only xDSL company delivering Internet access solutions across all “last mile” copper-based infrastructures – be they local loop, enterprise or home environments. The company’s products leverage the enormous potential of the underutilized copper wiring infrastructure by delivering high-speed data on unconditioned pairs. Tut’s product portfolio includes the XL line for campus and high-rise networks, the Expresso System for high-speed Internet access over local loop networks, and the innovative HomeRun family for home networking. The company’s products are available directly and through various VARs and manufacturing partners. The company’s headquarters is located at 2495 Estand Way, Pleasant Hill, CA 94523. Its phone number is (510) 682-6510 or (800) 998-4888; its fax number is (510) 682-4125; and its Web address is ( .

Founded in 1975, Microsoft (NASDAQ
) is the worldwide leader in software for personal computers. The company offers a wide range of products and services for business and personal use, each designed with the mission of making it easier and more enjoyable for people to take advantage of the full power of personal computing every day.

Microsoft and Windows are either registered trademarks or trademarks of Microsoft Corp. in the United States and/or other countries.

HomeRun and FastCopper are trademarks of Tut Systems Inc.

Other product and company names herein may be trademarks of their respective owners.

Note to editors: If you are interested in viewing additional information on Microsoft, please visit the Microsoft Web page at on Microsoft’s corporate information pages.

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