DSL as USB server?

Forum: Networking
Topic: DSL as USB server?
started by: bigkahuna

Posted by bigkahuna on Nov. 12 2008,11:18
I've got a bit of an unusual project that I need some help with.  I have a number of USB devices (1 webcam, 1 GPS, and 2 machine controllers) that I want to access remotely (these will be used in a robot).  I've looked at using a USB extender, but for the same amount of money I can get a mini-ITX board computer so that got me thinking.  Why not us Linux on a mini-ITX as a USB server?  Is this even possible with DSL?  I know I can share drives over a network but can I share USB devices?  I'm a bit of a noob when it comes to networking and haven't done much with Linux or DSL in a long time, any advice is appreciated.  Thanks!
Posted by curaga on Nov. 12 2008,13:30
That's an interesting idea. I'm not sure how you'd do the actual sharing, but you can use all local devices when you ssh in, would that fit your purpose?
Posted by bigkahuna on Nov. 12 2008,13:53
I'm pretty noobish to networking an Linux, so I don't know much about SSH.  In another forum it was suggested that I use VLC, which I learned today can stream live video.  If that works then that will take care of the video side.  All I need next is to be able to simultaneously send/receive ASCII to the other devices.  There won't be a lot of data to pass, I can slow the GPS to only send updates (a short ASCII string) every second and the other devices probably need to be updated 10x a second (also short ASCII strings).

The idea is to get away from a "dumb" USB extender that has limited expansion capabilities and instead use a remote computer.  I've even thought about using a remote desktop or such, but that may hog the data from the video stream...  So much to learn!  ;)

Posted by curaga on Nov. 12 2008,14:37
You could create a simple app / script that would just listen on a certain port, and then pass everything to the device - and vice versa, sending all data from the device to another port.
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