CompactPCI®, first adopted as an open industry standard in 1995, is a very popular standard for a implementing a wide range of communications, industrial automation, instrumentation, and military and aerospace applications. It uses the popular and proven Eurocard 3U and 6U mechanical standards and can be convention or conduction cooled. CompactPCI® Express, which was first introduced in 2005, added PCI Express signaling capability across the backplane while maintaining backwards compatibility with earlier versions of CompactPCI. CompactPCI Express is popular in the same applications as original CompactPCI, and provides higher performance with little or no increase in cost.

The CompactPCI family of standards has been growing since the original version was ratified in 1995, and represents over $500M in annual revenues. CompactPCI was the first open standard that provided reliable hot swap operation and was the first standard to incorporate a switched Ethernet backplane fabric in 2000. More recent versions, CompactPCI Express and CompactPCI Serial, are optimized for instrumentation and control applications and take advantage of newer serial communications standards.