Thursday, July 10, 2008

New USB Cat-5 Extender

I grabbed a couple USB extenders ( called Remote KVM USB Extender up to 300 FT CAT5 ) from this seller on eBay and they arrived yesterday. I was going to test connecting the gameport in the garage to the HA server in the office. I already have 3 runs of Cat-5 in the garage, but they are all used for various things. The guest room is adjacent to the garage and I pulled wires from its closet into the garage before. Luckily I had one full Cat-5 cable left and that was used to connect the gameport in the garage to my homemade USB extension over the Cat-5 cable into the guestroom.

In the office, I connected one end of the new USB extender to my HA server and the other to a Cat-5 cable, connected that to the patch panel that led to an unused jack in the nook area. From the nook wall plate, I rolled my own Cat-5 cable (stripped off the wire casing) and ran it under the rug to the guestroom closet. I terminated that end and connected it into the receiver of the USB extender. Finally, I plugged in a powered USB hub and connected the gameport to it. While I was doing that, I also moved the bluetooth adapter into the closet and plugged that into the USB hub.

Everything showed up in the device manager and I started up the bluetooth and gameport apps. It's running great so my next project may be to put an EdgePort USB to Serial device on the hub and move the RFID reader here (or into the garage if I put a hub in there). I am also looking at using 1Wire instead of the LM34s I use for temperatures - and may end up putting a 1Wire serial adapter on the EdgePort as well.

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