Serial Console & Android

Posted on December 9th, 2012 by Luke Sheldrick.
Categories: IT / Tech.
Tags: , , , , , , , , , , , .

9 12 2012

You’re in a datacenter, all you have with you is a bag of cables, a crash cart, and your mobile. A core switch has fallen over, and you need to quickly see what the console it outputting.

I was tinkering at home, where I was building a lab of some cisco and fortigate kit, and needed to quickly set a management IP. I had a rollover cable, and a usb to serial converter, and wondered if my Samsung Galaxy Note, and the ‘USB-to-go’ cable would allow me to connect to the serial port on the switches and firewalls. Using the inbuilt terminal didn’t work, and I couldn’t get minicom to play. However I did find an app in the Play Store, that had support for most of the usb converters.

A bit of fiddling, and bingo, it all worked.

Android Serial Console
I got this to work on my Galaxy Note, however this should work with anything that has USB Host Mode support. This would be really useful on a tablet.

The best bit here, is to do this, it’s really rather cheap. What I used:

USB-to-go connector – for converting the micro usb (Micro-B) to standard Female USB(Type A).
USB-to-Serial – cheap PL2303 based converter
Cisco Rollover cable – Every DC will have hundreds of these.

Slick USB 2 Serial Terminal – Android app that talks directly to the USB-to-Serial converter. (Ad supported or pay for version).

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2 comments.

Lisa Singh

Comment on December 9th, 2012.

That’s pretty cool.

Fearghas McKay

Comment on December 10th, 2012.

Fearghas McKay liked this on Facebook.

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