Onboard serial ports

John G. Heim jheim at math.wisc.edu
Thu May 16 11:20:53 EDT 2013

Right but if you  buy your own motherboard, then you have to put it 
together yourself. A lot of people aren't up to that.  And if you buy a 
machine or even have one built for you in a shop, their mobos might not 
have an exposed serial port or even the header block. The shop is 
probably buying the cheapest mobos they can and they might not have a 
serial port header block.

Personally, I don't buy a server class mobo when I build. I buy a 
workstation mobo with the header block and use an adapter to bring it 
out to the case. It doesn't cost any extra to do that any more because I 
just salvage the adapter from an old machine when I build a new one.

Another thing I'd recommend is going to a used computer store and buying 
a slightly older high-end machine. The Dell workstations we buy for the 
University of Wisconsin all still come with serial ports exposed on the 
back. You can get a dual-core machine at the University's used computer 
store for $100 and it'll run linux/orca just fine.

Before I started shopping at the University's used computer store,  I 
used to shop at this place where I'd leave them a note with 
specifications on the machine I wanted and they'd call me when a machine 
matching my specs came in. They were always happy to do that.

On 05/16/13 04:17, Tony Baechler wrote:
> Hash: SHA256
> Well, I guess I'm just lucky.  I found a motherboard with a serial port
> right off the bat on Amazon last August.  I just searched for server
> motherboard with serial port and it came right up.  I didn't look at any
> pdf files.  Sure enough, it has a normal, regular serial port which worked
> fine when I did my Debian install.  I really don't get why there seems to
> be so much trouble finding such a thing.  As I said, maybe I'm just lucky.
>   I've found that the dedicated computer sites are useless.  I had much
> better luck with Amazon.  I wouldn't bother with the shops, but I'm lazy.
> On 5/15/2013 6:38 PM, Mitchell D. Lynn wrote:
>> The shops I visited had systems built with those boards, and we checked
>> CMOS to see if they were listed there as well as in manuals. They also
>> looked at the board, and nothing indicated there were serial
>> connections at all. It's something I will keep in mind in the future.
>> Usually buy my stuff online; looks like I will again have to face those
>> odious PDF files.
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> Comment: Using GnuPG with Thunderbird - http://www.enigmail.net/
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John G. Heim, 608-263-4189, jheim at math.wisc.edu

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