Wifi for all Acorns with serial port !

discuss the archimedes & risc pc, peripherals and risc os/risc os on pi
Post Reply
Zarchos
Posts: 2355
Joined: Sun May 19, 2013 9:19 am
Location: FRANCE

Wifi for all Acorns with serial port !

Post by Zarchos »

User avatar
Elminster
Posts: 4256
Joined: Wed Jun 20, 2012 9:09 am
Location: Essex, UK
Contact:

Re: Wifi for all Acorns with serial port !

Post by Elminster »

Interesting. Link eventually leads to there how to setup on Atari link

https://www.chzsoft.de/site/hardware/co ... -internet/

Beeb is slower than Atari of course. Would be a little slow :D

Edit: Beeb, what am I talking about? not enough cofee. 8bitx4 = lots of bit.
Last edited by Elminster on Fri May 12, 2017 9:36 am, edited 1 time in total.
Andy1979
Posts: 168
Joined: Mon Mar 27, 2017 10:04 pm
Contact:

Re: Wifi for all Acorns with serial port !

Post by Andy1979 »

Interesting indeed. I know some people on here have already used these modules with a beeb. Not aware of anyone using one with an arc:
viewtopic.php?f=3&t=12426&hilit=esp8266

I bought a MAX3232CPE module to turn a spare Raspberyy Pi into a PPP router, which is a fairly well trodden path. For example:
http://jmp.no/blog/cheap-overkill-amiga-network-adapter

Am waiting on the serial connectors and a suitable amount of free time (the bigger problem!) to set this up. The Pi Zero W seems like the ideal candidate with its built in wifi, plus I could still switch out the SD card and use it for other things. The ESP8266 is an even cheaper solution though, and I like how easy he made it to update the SSID.

I also purchased an ENC28J60 module which can be used to add ethernet to a Pi Zero using SPI. Would be amazing if someone found a way to connect one of these to the Arcs which don't have network sockets. Unfortunately I would not know where to start! Again some progress has been made on the beeb viewtopic.php?t=6288
User avatar
Elminster
Posts: 4256
Joined: Wed Jun 20, 2012 9:09 am
Location: Essex, UK
Contact:

Re: Wifi for all Acorns with serial port !

Post by Elminster »

Andy1979 wrote:I
I bought a MAX3232CPE module to turn a spare Raspberyy Pi into a PPP router, which is a fairly well trodden path. For example:
http://jmp.no/blog/cheap-overkill-amiga-network-adapter

Crumbs they are only 99p including connection wires and P&P on ebay! Almost a no brainer as I bet lots of people have Pi's haning about from coPro and Risc OS playing.

Slightly off the 32 bit topic but would be interesting to put the Pi Wifi solution up against the Ethernet card in my master to see real world usage comparisons. Plus I have a 56k modem some where.

EDIT: Bought one. Have loads of Pis and null modem cables. So 99p is peanuts, can get it working on the Master and then wait for some one to start doing Serial ports again for my Electron! Estimated Delivery is many weeks, but for 99p who cares.
Andy1979
Posts: 168
Joined: Mon Mar 27, 2017 10:04 pm
Contact:

Re: Wifi for all Acorns with serial port !

Post by Andy1979 »

Excellent - be interested to see how you get on. I have the skills to follow instructions, but sadly not the knowledge to work these things out for myself from scratch, so I'm hoping that the various guides out there will see me right.

Since my last post I have connected the '99p' serial module to my original Raspberry Pi B. One of the strange things is that a lot of these modules have female sockets. I removed the bolts from mine and inserted it directly into a USB serial adapter on my PC, fired up PUTTY and voila, I had serial console output from the Pi (which is running Linux, not Risc OS). Job for the weekend is to set up PPP with USB wifi under a 'lite' install of Raspbian. I'll be trying this with my Psion 3A first to check that it works, as I gather that just getting internet up and running under RiscOS 3.1 is a challenge of its own.

Having read further into the ESP8266 it seems those modules are a little too limited to provide PPP, although the article @Zarchos linked to shows that SLIP is possible. It seems that the next-gen version of these modules is the ESP-32S which looks a lot more capable:
https://www.sparkfun.com/news/2017
These are also becoming available for a few quid from China on eBay. Amazing really.
Andy1979
Posts: 168
Joined: Mon Mar 27, 2017 10:04 pm
Contact:

Re: Wifi for all Acorns with serial port !

Post by Andy1979 »

So after spending most of the last few weekends sorting out domestic electrical problems I finally got chance to have a play with 'pppd' on the Raspberry Pi. Linux is not my strong suit, but managed to cobble together the correct commands from a number of different guides, and this is the result:
IMG_3294.JPG
IMG_3303.JPG
Getting DNS to work was the hard part for some reason. It is painfully slow (9600 baud) and not especially reliable, but I'm hoping that's down to the Psion's inability to handle modern web traffic.

I know the Psion is not an Acorn, but now that I have the Pi working as a PPP router I can try it with my A3010 next weekend. Also want to try out the 32-bit version of PsiFS under RiscOS 5.

Currently using a 256mb 1st gen Pi B with a wifi adapter running the latest 'mini' distribution of Raspbian. If it works well enough to justify a dedicated Pi then I'll miniaturise it down to a Pi Zero W.
User avatar
Elminster
Posts: 4256
Joined: Wed Jun 20, 2012 9:09 am
Location: Essex, UK
Contact:

Re: Wifi for all Acorns with serial port !

Post by Elminster »

Ah that brings back memories of using my psion mx5 in hotels with the psion gold modem pcmcia card and a nokia mobile. Emails were about the best you could do at 9600 wihtout going mad. That was probably 15-20 years ago.

Good show. Still waiting for my serial port to fly/float from China
User avatar
BigEd
Posts: 3751
Joined: Sun Jan 24, 2010 10:24 am
Location: West Country
Contact:

Re: Wifi for all Acorns with serial port !

Post by BigEd »

Excellent - love the Psion3 - was your method using PsiMail, as explained here?
Andy1979
Posts: 168
Joined: Mon Mar 27, 2017 10:04 pm
Contact:

Re: Wifi for all Acorns with serial port !

Post by Andy1979 »

@Elminster - instead of the 5mx I had a Palm IIIc with a cable to my trusty Nokia 5110 which allowed me to send/receive emails on the move before smart phones had become a thing.

The irony of this setup is that the Raspberry Pi has a 40Mbps VDSL connection available wirelessly, but it's the last metre of physical wiring which is limited to 9600 baud. It will connect at 19200 but immediately flakes out when you try and do anything with it. Wonder how fast it'll go on the Arc?

@BigEd, yes I'm using Psimail, which I think is/was the only internet suite available for the 3a/c/mx. Back in the day I used this with my US Robotics modem. The site you linked was the inspiration, but with some key differences to figure out:
- I'm using the Pi's internal UART (ttyAMA0) so first had to disable the serial console, and enable the UART in the boot configuration.
- The scripts on that page are using hardware flow control, which the Pi's UART doesn't have.
- I also struggled to get DNS working for some reason - ended up using Google's DNS server (8.8.8.8 )

I'm going to try enabling xon/xoff to see if that makes the link more reliable, then I need to make it all run automatically on start-up so I can operate the Pi headless. The aim is for this to act as a serial PPP 'modem' for any old computer I connect it to - primarily the A3010 though.

Lost track of all the different forum threads and blogs I used to make it work in the end, but if anyone's looking to do this the settings on this page (which I actually found after I'd finished!) are probably the closest to what I ended up with:
http://c0dedbad.co.uk/raspberrypi-amiga-ppp/
User avatar
Elminster
Posts: 4256
Joined: Wed Jun 20, 2012 9:09 am
Location: Essex, UK
Contact:

Re: Wifi for all Acorns with serial port !

Post by Elminster »

Andy1979 wrote:@Elminster - instead of the 5mx I had a Palm IIIc with a cable to my trusty Nokia 5110 which allowed me to send/receive emails on the move before smart phones had become a thing.
Snap on the nokia 5110. I had a 3c first but some tealeaf stole it. I did know quite a few 'them' with Palm's. All seemed pretty Star Trek at the time. hey days a childs VTech table does a better job.
User avatar
BigEd
Posts: 3751
Joined: Sun Jan 24, 2010 10:24 am
Location: West Country
Contact:

Re: Wifi for all Acorns with serial port !

Post by BigEd »

Great info @Andy1979 - thanks - I have a clutch of Psion 3's and it would be amusing to get one connected. Then over to http://retro.hackaday.com/ !
Andy1979
Posts: 168
Joined: Mon Mar 27, 2017 10:04 pm
Contact:

Re: Wifi for all Acorns with serial port !

Post by Andy1979 »

BigEd wrote:Great info @Andy1979 - thanks - I have a clutch of Psion 3's and it would be amusing to get one connected. Then over to http://retro.hackaday.com/ !
Like this you mean :D
20170522_225106.jpg
Unfortunately the browser is so old that I had to pass it through the HTML2TXT website from the linked article.

Couldn't get it to connect with software flow control (XON/XOFF) and despite fiddling with some of the endless pppd options the connection isn't very reliable using the UART from the GPIO pins.

This morning I tried a Lenovo USB to serial adapter (prolific chipset I think) and managed to connect reliably at 19200 baud (as fast as the Psion's serial link will go), so I think I'll revert to that option when testing this with the Arc.
User avatar
BigEd
Posts: 3751
Joined: Sun Jan 24, 2010 10:24 am
Location: West Country
Contact:

Re: Wifi for all Acorns with serial port !

Post by BigEd »

Brilliant!
Andy1979
Posts: 168
Joined: Mon Mar 27, 2017 10:04 pm
Contact:

Re: Wifi for all Acorns with serial port !

Post by Andy1979 »

Spent most of the long weekend doing jobs in the garden, but did manage to solder up another MAX3232 interface for the Pi - this time using one of the tiny eBay breakout boards. Same result as before - works great for terminal comms but PPP drops out a lot. Probably the Psion is the problem, and lack of hardware flow control won't help, but would recommend to anyone trying this that a USB to serial adapter is almost certainly the better option.

Next step remains to try them both with the A3010. Was far too hot to spend time in the loft this weekend where it lives.
IMG_3362.JPG
User avatar
Elminster
Posts: 4256
Joined: Wed Jun 20, 2012 9:09 am
Location: Essex, UK
Contact:

Re: Wifi for all Acorns with serial port !

Post by Elminster »

My breakboard arrived. Bit of rust on the dsub, but only 99p. Not tested yet, soooo many other projects to do. Keep the updates coming.
Post Reply

Return to “32-bit acorn hardware”