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FliesLikeABrick 09-27-2005 07:20 PM

USB-Parallel Port Adapter
Hey guys, I've got a project on my hands and need a bit of help

In my house ate college here, we have radiant heating in all the floors. I'm looking to make an application to keep track of when the zones are on and stuff, but my server that is conveniently right next to the controls for it doesn't have a parallel port.

The server is debian 3.1 with a 2.6 kernel, and I'm looking for a USB<-->Parallel adapter that would hopefully have native support, but otherwise would be ok too. It would be really cool to be able to start out reading all of the information about the system, and eventually control it from the server...

But to get off to a start, I need a parallel port to work with, thatll work well in linux.

Any ideas? google turned up some chips that have linux drivers, but i'm more interested in hopefully a straightforward adapter.

Would any normal one intended for windows work?

Charred 09-28-2005 12:24 PM

Are you talking about something like this, these, or these?

FliesLikeABrick 09-28-2005 02:44 PM

yes except 2 things:

my ultimate questions are:

1)will these be a hassle to get working on linux?
2) what about those, except with normal parallel female plugs on the end, not the printer connector?

Charred 09-29-2005 01:38 AM

I just wanted to make sure I understood what you were looking for.


The only things I can find are of uncertain value:

Of them all, I think the latter has the most hope because they sell parallel pci cards and offer linux drivers on their support page.

To answer your questions,
1- I tried to find things that other's have used under Linux, but I'm afraid I have no earthly idea.
2- You may have to resort to adapting the adaptor.

I hope I've helped at least a little.

Best of luck!

FliesLikeABrick 09-29-2005 01:26 PM

unfortunately, I don't have a free PCI slot in the server which is right next to the circulator controllers, that would make it really easy to get a parallel port on here.

As it is, I'm lucky to have 2 PCI slots in this 1U server.

I'm gonna look around to see if there is some simple microcontroller I might be able to use on the serial port, that way the microcontroller can parse a lot of data and send ASCII output back to the server

Charred 09-29-2005 01:46 PM

That's a good idea!
You might have better luck if you get in touch with a local plumbing/heating contractor and find out who their supplier is. You are not the first one to have though of this, there are commercial implementations. Perhaps they can point you in the direction of a solution?
Alternatively, have you considered picking up a bitty-box to use as a go-between? It might be cheaper than picking up a proprietary controller and faster than hacking together a board and burning EPROMS.

FliesLikeABrick 09-29-2005 01:47 PM

I'm currently taking a couple classes that deal with microprocessors, so it would be kinda fun to look into that as a solution once i can spare $50 for a microcontroller.

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