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doetoe
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Is there a serial connector on my Z600 motherboard? What can I do with it?

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Z600
Linux

I got a Z600 workstation, and I wonder if it has a serial connection. Below is a picture of the motherboard, at the bottom end I marked what could be a serial connection. Below it it says in miniscule letters "internal USB2/ DASH". Would it be identical to the external USB connectors except for the pins?

 

Would it be possible to connect to it (I'm on Linux) from a different computer to enter a terminal?

 

Thanks.

 

Serial connection?Serial connection?

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First, look up your workstation's service and technical manual..... google Z600 service guide.

 

Go look at the motherboard header id pages..... you'll see your header.

 

For years HP has not put a serial port on the backplane of its workstations but has put a header for attachment of a special HP flat ribbon cable, and the other end of that cable goes to a backplane PCI plate with PCB adapter attached.  This is not a passive device..... it is HP-proprietary.  Make sure to get the right size PCI plate for your backplane height.... full height versus small form factor plate, and make sure to get the flat ribbon cable (the adapter is virtually worthless without the flat interconnect cable).   The kits originally came with both size PCI plates and you could use whichever one you needed.

 

They work great for all of our workstations that still need serial port in/out.

 

And, HERE is how to read up more on them from an old post I did, including the HP part numbers to search on eBay for one of these.... cheap.  They don't wear out...... and remember that virtually all HP parts have two part numbers for the same exact part so search under both on eBay.

 

https://h30434.www3.hp.com/t5/Desktops-Archive-Read-Only/392414-001-serial-port-adapter-kit/m-p/5542...

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SDH
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First, look up your workstation's service and technical manual..... google Z600 service guide.

 

Go look at the motherboard header id pages..... you'll see your header.

 

For years HP has not put a serial port on the backplane of its workstations but has put a header for attachment of a special HP flat ribbon cable, and the other end of that cable goes to a backplane PCI plate with PCB adapter attached.  This is not a passive device..... it is HP-proprietary.  Make sure to get the right size PCI plate for your backplane height.... full height versus small form factor plate, and make sure to get the flat ribbon cable (the adapter is virtually worthless without the flat interconnect cable).   The kits originally came with both size PCI plates and you could use whichever one you needed.

 

They work great for all of our workstations that still need serial port in/out.

 

And, HERE is how to read up more on them from an old post I did, including the HP part numbers to search on eBay for one of these.... cheap.  They don't wear out...... and remember that virtually all HP parts have two part numbers for the same exact part so search under both on eBay.

 

https://h30434.www3.hp.com/t5/Desktops-Archive-Read-Only/392414-001-serial-port-adapter-kit/m-p/5542...

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By the way, what you have circled there on that Z600 motherboard picture is #22, the Internal USB2-DASH header, and the serial port header is #35 up at the top left beneath the bottom left white memory slot end.  That is from pages numbered 70-71 of the service guide.

 

The internal serial header pinout is on the page numbered 210, and it is a "2 x 8" header with one pin missing as a blank, pin 16.  In the diagram the # "14" is incorrectly placed over the blank.... that "14" should have been shifted one pin position to the left.

doetoe
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Thank you very much, this is very useful

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doetoe
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One follow up question: do you know if cables that directly connect/convert from the serial motherboard header to USB are available?

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Happy to help..... I'm sure an adapter/cable like you describe to convert to USB directly does not exist for this header but the in/out from the backplane end is perfect serial.  Maybe you are meaning some converter to go from a serial port to USB signals kind of like there is to go from USB port to parallel port via dongle?

 

On some consumer grade PCs there are motherboard headers that allow you to plug into that and the cable runs passivly over to the PCI backplane plate with a standard Serial Port I/O plug.

 

That is not the case on the HP workstation motherboard Serial Port header..... it is a powered header with the flat cable carrying power/control signals/data signals over to the small HP proprietary adapter with its own PCB over there at the backplane plate.  HP engineers these workstations to a high standard, so there is more expense but high quality.  They did the same thing with their USB 3 implementation.  Those cables to the front of their workstations are not consumer grade either.

 

But, the input/output through this device runs perfectly as a serial port.... we still have some devices that are legacy and use serial ports.

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