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Adsl/Ether-USB/Router modification candidate?

Discussion in 'Electronic Design' started by [email protected], Feb 10, 2005.

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  1. Guest

    Anyone has a tip on any Adsl modem, Home-Router, USB-Ethernet adapter, etc..
    That has an cpu that is easy to hook up additional bus hardware to..?

    (For ethernet -> synchronious I/O speed of approx 1.5 Mbps like I2S etc..)

    I'm also esp curious on those usb<->ethernet adapters some small as thumb. Do
    they contain any form of cpu+flash that is possible to reprogram .. ?
  2. Joel Kolstad

    Joel Kolstad Guest

    Many of the wireless routers are miniature Linux boxes and you could at
    least find a lot of information about how to add additional I/O. The
    Netgear WRT54G is quite popular, very hackable, and cheap (all of $70 at
    I don't know any particular, but some speculation here:

    It's likely that there is a CPU hidden in there somewhere, but those
    adapters are usually complete 'systems on a chip' and unlikely to have very
    much spare I/O. It's also not uncommon that the chip vendors purposely
    don't document much of anything regarding how to use the CPU; they often
    provide a binary file and tell you how to dump it into the chip via USB, but
    that's it.

    (I looked at an Atmel USB host IC once that was meant to be used with an ARM
    processor. While it was clear that the USB IC had a processor inside --
    either an AVR or 8031 core -- Atmel just gave you the code that the ARM
    loaded into the thing and that was that. They actively refused to provide
    more details on its internal architecture/operation.)

    I get enough excitement just figuring out how various manufacturers add in
    extra features such as icon control to LCDs that are otherwise 99% 'Hitachi
    HD44780 compatible.' :)

    ---Joel Kolstad
  3. Guest

    Those WLan controllers are nice. And the ethernet + pcmcia slot _really_ gives
    a lot of oppertunities. But I look for something that hopefully will provide
    some Adress/Data/R-W signal so I can simple solder an additional chip right
    on the pcb board.
    My idea was to reprogram it to work "the other way". Ie the ethernet controls
    the connected usb dongles as a master-host.
    If it's AVR/8031 it should be easy to make it do other things. One could put
    the code in a emulator. And watch what i/o addresses are accessed. Which
    hopefully can tell bit by bit what's going on ;)
    Or simple just replace the control chip, to get the line interfaces for free ;)
  4. Joel Kolstad

    Joel Kolstad Guest

    I would very seriously doubt that the USB --> Ethernet dongles have the
    necessary hardware to ever be usable as USB masters (hosts). Or perhaps
    that wasn't what you had in mind? If all you want to do is access a CPU via
    Ethernet, the RealTek chips seem quite popular and you can find lots of
    designs out there where people have glued them to all the popular 8 bit
    A USB host is complex enough that trying to figure out what, say, a dozen or
    so unknown I/O registers are doing is going to be VERY time consuming. :)
    But I'd grant you that, yeah, given enough time it's doable.

  5. Guest

    I had the idea to:
    a) Solder comms chip to existing adsl/router/etc..
    b) Reprogram usb-ethernet dongle to controll comms dongle from an ethernet
    I figured the cost is less to modify existing construction. Because pcb,
    soldering, box, power supply etc. Is already done.
    I have looked at D-Link DSL-300T which use Texas Instruments AR7. But it uses
    a "VLYNQ" bus.. not something you interface directly =)
    Ohwell.. maybe I should drop that ;), or maybe there is readible chips that
    allows one to replace the existing one? (and save the line interface)
  6. Joel Kolstad

    Joel Kolstad Guest

    I'm not quite following what you want to do? Since existing ADSL
    modems/routers will already have Ethernet ports on them that you could use
    directly to control the thing?
  7. Guest

    Well there are two ways to do it. Attach usb dongle with i2s to a usb<->eth
    that acts as a device controller. Or..
    Solder chip with i2s port into a adsl/router device.
  8. You can check out the Airborne systems at They are
    wifi to serial devices with a lot of programmable smarts in them!
  9. Ian Stirling

    Ian Stirling Guest

    WRT56G has a serial port (once you solder it up)
  10. Guest

    I2S capable?
  11. Ian Stirling

    Ian Stirling Guest

    And that should be 54G.
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