Intel has announced its 6 Series Chipset, code named Cougar Point, is once again shipping after production had halted because of a design flaw.

The Cougar Point support chipset is used in Intel's second Generation Core Processors, code named Sandy Bridge. The company said the original chipset's Serial-ATA (SATA) ports would degrade over time. In turn, this could impact the performance or functionality of SATA-linked devices such as hard disk drives and DVD drives.

Intel has started manufacturing on a new version of the chip. It now expects to begin shipping the new parts in mid February. Originally, the company didn't expect the shipping process to begin until late February.

Several companies, including HP and Samsung, offered refunds for computers that used the flawed chipset. The news also delayed the release and shipping of devices using Sandy Bridge processors by a few weeks. It's unclear that if getting the fixed chipset shipped faster than expected means the Sandy Bridge devices will now be sent out on their intended shipping date.

Even with this good news, the company has not updated its first quarter 2011 and full-year financial outlook. The company said during the original announcement the design flaw caused them to revise their quarter and year-end guidance

Intel did not respond to a request for comment.

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