Mailinglist Archive: opensuse (882 mails)

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Re: [opensuse] Serial to USB adaptor
  • From: Roger Oberholtzer <roger@xxxxxx>
  • Date: Fri, 03 Dec 2010 08:15:05 +0100
  • Message-id: <1291360505.6869.5.camel@xxxxxxxxxxxx>
On Thu, 2010-12-02 at 13:57 -0500, Adam Tauno Williams wrote:
On Thu, 2010-12-02 at 11:15 -0500, Richard Creighton wrote:
On 2010-11-30 Stan offered the following:
I am looking on ebay at a serial-to-usb adapter to use with a trackball
that has a serial connector on its cable. This thing comes with a CD for
Windows. Does anyone know if this is something I can use on a Linux
machine? What would I need to have to use it?
I bought an el-cheapo "gender-mender" type converter from Radio Shack
and plugged
it in .... no software required, from 'Doze or anyone else and it just
works.....threw the 'coaster' that "Doze machines must apparently need for
reason away before it contaminated anything :) I think in the case of a
mouse, the
rs-232 is close enough to USB that the little converter (plus it's
resistors/diodes/whatever) need no software, just the pin diddling.

This isn't true; it does require software, but the drivers are built-in
and are loaded automatically. There are only a handful of USB/RS-232
chips, the majority of which are supported out-of-the-box. For

And the support is uneven. While all the drivers support the basic
functionality, only some support all the status/control lines or take
action on them. I checked this when were were investigating if we could
use such a device with very high end GPS units. These provide a
pulse-per-second signal on one of the control lines. This PPS lets you
know when something in the receiver was calculated, so you can time tag
it more accurately than when it eventually arrives on the serial port.
We have decided that the good old RS-232 is still best for this type of
thing. Too bad real ports are going away. I guess we will soon be adding
RS-232 interface cards to systems.

Roger Oberholtzer

OPQ Systems / Ramböll RST

Ramböll Sverige AB
Krukmakargatan 21
P.O. Box 17009
SE-104 62 Stockholm, Sweden

Office: Int +46 10-615 60 20
Mobile: Int +46 70-815 1696

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