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In this paper, we consider robust transmit strategies, against the imperfectness of the channel state information at the transmitter (CSIT), for multi-input multi-output (MIMO) communication systems. Following a worst-case deterministic model, the actual channel is assumed to be inside an ellipsoid centered at a nominal channel. The objective is to maximize the worst-case received signal-to-noise ratio (SNR), or to minimize the worst-case Chernoff bound of the error probability, thus leading to a maximin problem. Moreover, we also consider the QoS problem, as a complement of the maximin design, which minimizes the transmit power consumption and meanwhile keeps the received SNR above a given threshold for any channel realization in the ellipsoid. It is shown that, for a general class of power constraints, both the maximin and QoS problems can be equivalently transformed into convex problems, or even further into semidefinite programs (SDPs), thus efficiently solvable by the numerical methods. The most interesting result is that the optimal transmit directions, i.e., the eigenvectors of the transmit covariance, are just the right singular vectors of the nominal channel under some mild conditions. This result leads to a channel-diagonalizing structure, as in the cases of perfect CSIT and statistical CSIT with mean or covariance feedback, and reduces the complicated matrix-valued problem to a scalar power allocation problem. Then we provide the closed-form solution to the resulting power allocation problem.