[HARDWARE] Has anyone looked into USB networking for a small rack of motherboards.

Neil Sproston NeilSp at astrosoc.demon.co.uk
Wed Oct 28 12:04:28 EST 1998


Hi All,
	I have seen a demo of a box that connects 2 PC's together with 2 USB
cables.  The cost was prohibitive (a bit over a mini enet hub and 2 enet
cards) and only did point to point.

Heres an idea though: create a ring using RS232 (TX on PC a to RX on PC b,
TX on PC b to RX on PC c, TX on PC c to RX on PC a) and some simple software
to move keys around.

I did this many years ago on 10 Amiga's in BASIC (it cost me about UKP 1.5
per PC but it did do chat and FTP)  It would be slow but the block files are
very small anyway.

Yours,
Neil S.

	-----Original Message-----
	From:	Robert Norton [SMTP:rjn at execpc.com]
	Sent:	Tuesday, October 27, 1998 4:27 PM
	To:	hardware at lists.distributed.net
	Subject:	Re: [HARDWARE] Has anyone looked into USB networking
for a small rack of  motherboards.

	Hi Johnathan,

	I think that USB cables have an "upstream" end and a "downstream"
end,
	so tying two computers together would require at least some sort of
	gender-bender cable, and maybe a chip inbetween to act as a slave to
	both ends.  I was thinking it would be nice to put a FPGA cracker
into
	a small USB box.  You could then modify the GUI client to replace
the
	inner loop with a call to the box.

	Bob Norton.

	Jonathan Smith wrote:

	> Someone posted an idea a while back for using a cascade of serial
links to
	> provide very cheap networking for a rack of motherboards.  And
since celeron
	> systems seem a cheap fast way to crack RC5 keys has anyone looked
into using
	> USB networking, since all the new ATX motherboards ship with USB
built in.
	> Obviously if you did this you would be booting off a floppy drive
or some
	> such since you couldn't have a boot prom like on an ethernet card.
	>
	> So I guess I'd like to know,
	> 1) Has anyone tried / experimented with this.
	> 2) Would any special hardware be required or could you just like
the USB
	> connectors on the different motherboards with a USB cable
	> 3) How hard would it be to set up Linux to use a USB network
	>
	> Thanks,
	>         Jonathan Smith
	>
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