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Switcher Hangout The place for switchers to discuss their new machines, and how to work with OS X. General support can be had here for newbie stuff, like "How do I restart my new iMac?" :)

Getting a Laptop soon and need help/information...


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Gekigengar3
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Hello all,

Well, I'm gonna be getting a laptop soon for work related stuff. And I'm finding myself with a lack of information on a particular aspect.

Basically I'd be using it to keep track of various jobs I go on and time and materials used. This part I don't have any problems with.

But the other part is what I need to know about.

I'm a HVAC (Heating, Ventilation, and Air conditioning) Technician/Engineer. I'm going to be using it to interface with various control systems. Now I would like to get a Mac and use that for work. There are 4 or 5 systems I'd be dealing with. And are connected to either by modem (No problem there), Ethernet (No problem there), or direct connection using a terminal emulator (Problem here).

Now some of these have software which runs on a PC. However I know that software will run on Virtual PC. I've already tested that and no problems there.

(Anyone know if Virtual PC will recognize the internal modem on the new Mac Laptops?)

So what I need to know, is there a way to allow a Mac Laptop to connect via terminal emulation to whatever I connect to. THe main problem being here is the mac laptop doesn't have a serial port.

From what I've researched, there is the Keyspan USB to Serial Adapters (USB to DB9 and USB to standard mac serial port)

I have a Mac Serial Port to DB9 adapter cable that I know for a fact works. (Used it in Virtual PC to access Sony Memory Stick Reader)

But USB to either port is a bit different.

I think a Keyspan to Mac Serial Port adapter, combined with my mac serial port to DB9 adapter cable will work. But I am uncertain about it.

So does anyone here have any experience in using a mac laptop and terminal emulator with adapter to connect to something?

Any help is greatly appreciated. I still have another month before I have to decide whether to go with the Mac (Preferred) or a PC.

I know getting a PC Laptop would be easier. (It has built in 9 pin DB9 port.) But I've always been a Mac person.

Thanks and I hope to hear from some of you soon.

~Geki

Ja Ne!
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kiarna
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Gekigengar3
Hello all,
SNIPPET:
So does anyone here have any experience in using a mac laptop and terminal emulator with adapter to connect to something?

Any help is greatly appreciated. I still have another month before I have to decide whether to go with the Mac (Preferred) or a PC.

I know getting a PC Laptop would be easier. (It has built in 9 pin DB9 port.) But I've always been a Mac person.

Thanks and I hope to hear from some of you soon.

~Geki

Ja Ne!
Well it's a year late, but I went looking to fix this problem and here is how I solved it.

I'm a unix/linux sysadmin and wanted to use my powerbook G4 to connect via serial to my linux servers in the rack. I had been using a PC laptop for the reasons you stated, but I wanted to ween off of PC's entirely.

I read a bunch of things online and no one seemed to have a simple howto posted so it took me a while.

Here's what I did:

1. Bought the Keyspan USB adapter for USB to Serial. (the serial end is male 9 pin) for about 30$.
2. bought MacWise terminal emulation software for around 100$
3. One null modem cable with dual 9 pin female ends.

now I had looked into screwing around with the drivers etc to try and get the adapter to talk to the server without the emulation software and I looked for freeware. I couldn't find anything that looked solid and the makers of MacWise are old skool wee program makers at Carnation Software. I like giving cash (company cash that is) to support people who make good quality stuff. I demo'd the app first before purchasing and it worked sweet.

Very simple procedure:

1. Installed the Keyspan drivers from the included CD with the USB adapter.
2. Plugged in the adapter.
3. Connected my null modem cable to the server's 9 pin serial port. (I had already configured my linux OS to listen there).
4. Joined the null modem cable to my adapter.
5. Started MacWise, toggled to the 'serial port' settings' set my emulation options (VT100 etc)
6. Opened connection

And BOOM!

I was driving my rack linux server from the comfort of my G4 laptop.

Total time for setup and connection: 5 minutes tops.

After playing with it I went and bought the MacWise software and got the registartion key in under a half hour. I'm planning on using it for a lot more than the server terminals, it looks great for PDA's in general. :spook:

I'm very happy!
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rman

 
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Member Since: Dec 24, 2002
Location: Los Angeles, California
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Tanks kiarna, thats good know to for us unix system admins

Life isn't about waiting for the storm to pass, It's about learning to dance in the rain!
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