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Laptop with legacy serial I/O

This forum is dedicated to the general computer related issues we all come across on a daily basis, such as e-mail/Internet/Operating System/virus/spyware, etc questions & problems.

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Al
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Laptop with legacy serial I/O

Postby Al » Thu Oct 24, 2013 8:00 pm

Is there anyone still making a laptop with a legacy serial port usable with dual booted MSDOS and Windows operating systems? Any suggestions would be welcome. Something of recent manufacture with a 14" or so screen would also be usable.

tvsjr
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Re: Laptop with legacy serial I/O

Postby tvsjr » Thu Oct 24, 2013 8:31 pm

Any of the Dell Latitude E-series laptops will work with the "legacy port expander". It snaps on the bottom where the docking station would go and gives you real serial, parallel, PS/2, etc.

Dorf411
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Re: Laptop with legacy serial I/O

Postby Dorf411 » Fri Oct 25, 2013 4:50 am

I purchased Panasonic Toughbook CF53 laptops that have the serial port, it will cost you around $2,000 but was well worth it to me to get a new reliable computer that was durable.

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spectragod
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Re: Laptop with legacy serial I/O

Postby spectragod » Fri Oct 25, 2013 7:39 am

Dorf411 wrote:I purchased Panasonic Toughbook CF53 laptops that have the serial port, it will cost you around $2,000 but was well worth it to me to get a new reliable computer that was durable.


As do the cf30's and cf31's, great rugged laptop for field use, but a little spendy, you can pick up a decent cf30 on the used market for about $500, or for the same money you could buy a new Dell.
Kilgore: Smell that? You smell that?
Lance: What?
Kilgore: Napalm, son. Nothing in the world smells like that.
Kilgore: I love the smell of napalm in the morning. You know, one time we had a hill bombed, for 12 hours. When it was all over, I walked up. We didn't find one of 'em, not one stinkin' dink body. The smell, you know that gasoline smell, the whole hill. Smelled like... victory. Someday this war's gonna end...

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Dorf411
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Re: Laptop with legacy serial I/O

Postby Dorf411 » Fri Oct 25, 2013 7:49 am

spectragod wrote:As do the cf30's and cf31's, great rugged laptop for field use, but a little spendy, you can pick up a decent cf30 on the used market for about $500, or for the same money you could buy a new Dell.


New Dell laptops do not have a serial port including the Latitude series. I chose the CF53 models for our shop because the are reasonably rugged but still fairly light and quite a bit more compact than the CF30/31's. I still use a Dell D820 and manage to keep it going but have had to replace the wireless card, display, and the motherboard. It is amazing how affordable replacement parts are on the auction site.

tvsjr
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Re: Laptop with legacy serial I/O

Postby tvsjr » Fri Oct 25, 2013 11:26 am

Dorf411 wrote:New Dell laptops do not have a serial port including the Latitude series. I chose the CF53 models for our shop because the are reasonably rugged but still fairly light and quite a bit more compact than the CF30/31's. I still use a Dell D820 and manage to keep it going but have had to replace the wireless card, display, and the motherboard. It is amazing how affordable replacement parts are on the auction site.


Yes... they do... if you'd read my post, you would know this. Check the following:
http://accessories.us.dell.com/sna/prod ... u=430-3115

These can be had cheap on eBay quite commonly. I have used them with as recent as a Precision M4700 (quad-core Ivy Bridge i7), booting to DOS or Win98, to program old/slow crap. You won't be able to program an X9000 with this, but it works just fine for analog Spectra, Minitor 3/4, etc. They also work great for flashing radios using serial.

Note, there's a list of what products are supported. They don't list the most current systems (M4800, E7xxx, etc.) so I don't know if these will work or not. I know the dock connector is the same, but the latest gen may not handle this device.

Al
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Re: Laptop with legacy serial I/O

Postby Al » Fri Oct 25, 2013 12:48 pm

Thanks for the info, Terry. As a result, I'm seriously looking at an E5340 with the e-series legacy extender to replace an HP/Compaq NC6220.

Dorf411
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Re: Laptop with legacy serial I/O

Postby Dorf411 » Sat Oct 26, 2013 3:24 am

tvsjr wrote:Yes... they do... if you'd read my post, you would know this. Check the following:
http://accessories.us.dell.com/sna/prod ... u=430-3115

These can be had cheap on eBay quite commonly. I have used them with as recent as a Precision M4700 (quad-core Ivy Bridge i7), booting to DOS or Win98, to program old/slow crap. You won't be able to program an X9000 with this, but it works just fine for analog Spectra, Minitor 3/4, etc. They also work great for flashing radios using serial.

Note, there's a list of what products are supported. They don't list the most current systems (M4800, E7xxx, etc.) so I don't know if these will work or not. I know the dock connector is the same, but the latest gen may not handle this device.


Your right, I didn't read you post closely enough, how securely do they attach to the bottom of the laptop? Are they secure enough to allow a technician to climb in and out of fire trucks and squad cars without it being fumbly and a nuisance?

tvsjr
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Re: Laptop with legacy serial I/O

Postby tvsjr » Sat Oct 26, 2013 5:12 pm

Dorf411 wrote:Your right, I didn't read you post closely enough, how securely do they attach to the bottom of the laptop? Are they secure enough to allow a technician to climb in and out of fire trucks and squad cars without it being fumbly and a nuisance?


Definitely. It mounts just like a docking station, with a positive latching arrangement. You have to pull a latch to release the two locking pins before it will come off. It has rubber pads on the bottom so you can leave it on and still use the laptop on a desk - it just tilts the back of the system up a bit. It actually makes it better to type on.

One word of caution - I've had occasional issues using it when attaching the extender after the PC was running. Always best to mount the extender, then boot the system.

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MSS-Dave
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Re: Laptop with legacy serial I/O

Postby MSS-Dave » Sun Oct 27, 2013 5:05 am

+1 for tvsjr's suggestion. That is what i am typing on right now, Dell E6420. E-Legacy expander P/N is PR04X. NO issues in the year I have had it. Running Win 7 Enterprise, I have Astro25 and APX CPS along with Kenwood stuff and a bunch of stand-alone stuff requiring serial port access. Normally use USB on the /\/\ stuff but have used serial mobile cable no issue. COM 1 is what you get, nothing has barfed when it gets installed. Very secure, just adds a bit of a tilt if you have it on a table which really works out OK. Only suggestion I have is to add a DB9 male/male gender changer to the port to build it out a bit. Some cables with moulded connectors are a tight fit into the slightly recessed port, first cable I tried actually would not completely seat because of the moulding.

Dave

Al
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Re: Laptop with legacy serial I/O

Postby Al » Sun Oct 27, 2013 7:31 am

Thanks for your comments, Dave. I appreciate it!

radioinstl
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Re: Laptop with legacy serial I/O

Postby radioinstl » Mon Oct 28, 2013 9:25 am

I use a Dell E6330 with the legacy "slice" and it works great. Have had no problems even with hot swapping it. Prior comments were correct about some connectors being a tight fit.


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