Monday 18 June 2012

Product Review: ATEN USB-to-Serial Converter

We have a number of components going into our now Microsoft Private Cloud lab platform that we have either had in the shop or brought in for this effort.

_All_ of them have a serial port on them for console access to the firmware/software/OS on them.

With the Toshiba Tecra S10 having taken on different duties and thus no longer available 100% of the time, it has a built-in RS-232 port, we looked around for a suitable USB to Serial RS-232 adapter.

Up to this point none of the units we brought in before worked well at all.

After polling a number of folks both locally and via e-mail lists the unit that came out high on the suggested list was the ATEN UC232A.


So far we have done the following with the above:

  • Troubleshoot and fix the APC AP9630 Management Card: Error: The application was not able to load. (Previous blog post)
    • Required a few days of being connected and used to log onto the APC’s console.
    • Not a hiccup even after using TELNET or SSH to log onto the management unit.
  • Configure the Promise VTrak E610sD units.
    • Watch them boot and log onto the CLI to configure IP and logon.
  • Configure the Intel Modular Server
    • Work with updating firmware and wiping the CMM to start fresh.
    • CMM and IMS Boot monitoring.

The ATEN is a _must have_ for any technician’s laptop bag.

This is especially true for us since the new Toshiba Portégé Ultrabooks do not have any serial connectors at all.

For the terminal connection we use the free Tera Term emulation software.

Philip Elder
Microsoft Small Business Specialists
Co-Author: SBS 2008 Blueprint Book

*Our original iMac was stolen (previous blog post). We now have a new MacBook Pro courtesy of Vlad Mazek, owner of OWN.

Windows Live Writer


Anonymous said...

The link to the 2008 SBS book doesn't work:

Philip Elder Cluster MVP said...


Yeah, apparently it is no longer published.

All good things must come to an end. :)

Try giving SMB Nation a call and see if they have any copies lying around.

I may also have one sitting on a shelf somewhere if you don't find one at SMBN.



Unknown said...

I have this adapter maybe for 7 years - and is stil supported...