The Haxxio UDP Serial Port Redirector


The Haxxio UDP Serial Port Redirector is the missing link between devices that speak UDP on your network and are thus "connected" to your PC, via an Ethernet port (specifically UDP over IP) and Windows applications on the PC that can only talk to a serial port. Most applications for the Redirector are based on one of:

  • Replacing a simple serial connection, either RS232 or RS485, with a network connection, thus simplifying the connection and removing the cable length barrier, up to the point of crossing the planet. Examples
  • Requiring to communicate RS232 over a wireless connection between either PCs, or PCs and terminal servers - Wireless ethernet is much cheaper and more available than wireless RS232. Examples
  • Enabling a group of PCs and/or other devices to all communicate with each other. This can be arranged by having all the devices broadcast their messages, and by using the UDP Redirector on on one or more PCs, these PCs can also be part of this communicating group. Examples

Whats New About the Haxxio UDP Serial Redirector?

The Haxxio Serial Port Redirector uses UDP to communicate between itself and either other instances of itself on other PCs, or hardware devices. Almost all other network serial port redirector devices available use TCP. Both UDP and TCP are members of the IP protocol set, which is often generically referred to as TCP/IP.

The Haxxio UDP Serial Redirector is also the lowest cost product of its type that we know about, making deployment possible in situations where prieviously RS232 over a network connection would have been prohibitively expensive.

The product manual is online in easy to browse format, take some time to look at the Redirector, check out the examples, and see what the Redirector can do for you.

What else do I need?

Pros and Cons UDP versus TCP Connectivity


Using UDP broadcasts a group of devices on a single network (or more accurately, within a single broadcast domain) may communicate with each other on a one-to-many, many-to-one or many-to-many basis.

Only a single pair of devices may communicate.

UDP is connectionless, and thus doesnt require any specific steps to initiate conectivity, configured devices simply communicate

TCP is connection based and thus one or other ends of the connection must take responsibility for setting up the connection, maintaining it, and re-establishing it should it fail. The other end must be willing to accept reconnections.

UDP is not a guaranteed delivery protocol. It is possible (though in modern network practice this happens rarely, if at all) for data not to be delivered to the target application. If the applications use checksums or other sanity checks they should detect missed data. Alternatively, if the data is transient in nature, a single missed data item may not be an issue.

TCP is guaranteed delivery. This means that whilst the connection between the endpoints is "alive" then data send from one endpoint will come out at the other. If data is lost in transit then TCP will retransmit the data without the application being aware anything went wrong. If a circumstance arises such that TCP cannot deliver on its promises, it will sever the connection.

Is the Redirector Right for My Application

If you have a single device communicating with a single PC, then the connectionless advantages of UDP may or may not benefit you. You may be better served using a TCP based product. A TCP based product will set up a fixed connection between the two communication endpoints.

Should you wish to check out a TCP based product, then have a look at Tactical Software Serial/IP Redirector

What about non-Windows platforms

Sorry, we have no plans to support platforms other than Windows.

Tactical Software (mentioned above) now have a Linux product offering called TTYredirector. This tool is an out-of-the-box solution, with the same sorts of features as the Windows product, such as packaged install, commercial support, RFC2217 port control etc.

Unix users may also wish to look at TTYD, produced by Joe Croft at which is highly spoken of, and is available under the GPL.

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