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First post, by scorp

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Hello, just in case someone is interested. I dumped a DIY which I used for years now into a PCB and open sourced the solution. It is built around an Arduino, it is simple and dirt cheap. The software can be definitely improved and I know how, but I just didn't have time to implement it. Anyway it is in working and quite usable state, so have fun.

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GitHub Project:
https://github.com/necroware/ps2-serial-mouse-adapter

Introduction video on my Youtube Channel:
https://youtu.be/ORccba_6Pfg

My Youtube channel Necroware

Reply 1 of 14, by maxtherabbit

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The devil's in the details with these things. There is another MCU based adapter that was shared on the forums here a while back. https://github.com/matze79/PS2-Adapter/

The physical interfacing is trivial of course, but they were never able to get the firmware exactly right. The main hurdles are getting higher baud rates to work across the full spectrum of retro OSes. (Windows 9x, NT, and DOS/3.1) Higher baud rates are needed to allow the device to work properly with KVM as well as provide a meaningful benefit over a genuine serial mouse.

Reply 2 of 14, by 1541

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@scorp: thumbs up!

@maxtherabbit: most documentation is in German, but you'll find patched mouse drivers with higher baud rates in the directory https://github.com/matze79/PS2-Adapter/tree/m … %20v1.1/TREIBER

Windows 98 SE inofficial Service Pack & NUSB (German)
Windows 9x device drivers and tools (German)

Reply 3 of 14, by scorp

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maxtherabbit wrote on 2020-12-27, 16:06:

The devil's in the details with these things. There is another MCU based adapter that was shared on the forums here a while back. https://github.com/matze79/PS2-Adapter/

The physical interfacing is trivial of course, but they were never able to get the firmware exactly right. The main hurdles are getting higher baud rates to work across the full spectrum of retro OSes. (Windows 9x, NT, and DOS/3.1) Higher baud rates are needed to allow the device to work properly with KVM as well as provide a meaningful benefit over a genuine serial mouse.

I never aimed any benefit over a real serial mouse. I just don't have any serial mouse since a very long time and I just wanted to use my optical PS/2 (USB) mouse with my retro machines. No more, no less. I'm using it almost as I open sourced it since about three years. I tested this adapter only with some mice, which I have, with DOS, Linux and Windows9x. It works at 1200 baud and I have no clue, if it will work with KVM. I'm glad about any input, that's why I open sourced it eventually. All in all, this adapter is very cheap, very simple to solder (only through holes parts) and is based on Arduino, so everybody, who likes to tinker should be able to play around. This was my main aim.

My Youtube channel Necroware

Reply 4 of 14, by maxtherabbit

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1541 wrote on 2020-12-27, 19:47:

@scorp: thumbs up!

@maxtherabbit: most documentation is in German, but you'll find patched mouse drivers with higher baud rates in the directory https://github.com/matze79/PS2-Adapter/tree/m … %20v1.1/TREIBER

Which only work on DOS and 3.1, not 9x and NT. No offense 😀

Reply 5 of 14, by scorp

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@maxtherabbit I think, you got it wrong. Both adapters, the one I introduced here and the one by Matze, were not made to give you any benefit over a normal serial mouse. If you have one, you can continue to use it, if you like. But what can people do, which do not have an old serial mouse? Or may be don't want to use it, because of the annoying ball mechanics? With this adapters you can use an optical mouse for example, or any PS/2 capable mouse, if you have no serial one. You know what I mean? The solution of Matze is more integrated, it is smaller and better tested, than what I made. My project on the other hand is more a DIY for the tinkerers among us 😀 But in the end, both adapters were tested and do work with DOS, Windows and Linux. I read about the problems with KVM delay, but first, not everybody uses KVM and second, it is a firmware issue, which can be improved relatively easily. I didn't look into the firmware of Matze's adapter, but I know how the timing can be drastically improved in my code. However, I would have to rewrite most of the code and I didn't find the time yet. Furthermore, I'm a software developer and I don't like dirty solutions, so I would like to think about a clean design and that needs time. Anyway, software can be easily updated afterwards and, just as I told, may be there are people out there, who would like to participate and improve the software too...

My Youtube channel Necroware

Reply 6 of 14, by maxtherabbit

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I'm sorry if my post came off as entitled or ungrateful. I understand there is still a valid use case for these things, I just would love to see someone write some software for one that would realise its full potential

Reply 7 of 14, by scorp

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It was not ungrateful, it just sounds, like you expect it to be something different, from what it actually is. Anyway, if you have a use case, where you need it to be improved, that's why it is open source 😀 It is extremely simple to write your own firmware or to improve the available one. If you know, how to use Arduino IDE, you officially ready to start. I guess, this is the reason, why people open source their projects. We all want to give something to the community and benefit from it as well. I published it here not to get kudos, but to give people an opportunity to participate.... so, you are welcome! 😉

My Youtube channel Necroware

Reply 8 of 14, by schlomoe99

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Speaking of KVM, I’ve had success with using the Belkin OmniView SE 4 Port KVM Switch PS/2, which will convert any ps/2 mouse to a serial mouse port. This lets me use my Microsoft Intellimouse Optical, for instance, with my 486. I haven’t seen any noticeable lag, so this has worked very well for me.

They are dirt cheap on eBay right now. I picked up mine for $5, you just need appropriate VGA ps/2 and a serial cable.

Reply 9 of 14, by scorp

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At least in Germany the named KVM Switches seem to be very expensive as far as I can see. Most of which I could find are located in USA and with delivery they cost 50-60€ plus taxes. If you don't really need a KVM, it doesn't make a lot of sense. The adapter, which I presented up there costs just couple of €. I mean the most expensive part is an Arduino Mini, which costs here 3.50€ and all the rest together about the same.

My Youtube channel Necroware

Reply 11 of 14, by scorp

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Caluser2000 wrote on 2020-12-28, 18:57:

Good work. I'd imagine some folk would good use of it. Just ijnor the Debbie Downers life is too short...

I hope so. At least if it was helpful for me for the last 3 years, I guess, there will be someone else who can find it useful as well 😀 Even if I can't make everybody happy with this thing....

My Youtube channel Necroware

Reply 12 of 14, by matze79

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maxtherabbit wrote on 2020-12-27, 23:40:
1541 wrote on 2020-12-27, 19:47:

@scorp: thumbs up!

@maxtherabbit: most documentation is in German, but you'll find patched mouse drivers with higher baud rates in the directory https://github.com/matze79/PS2-Adapter/tree/m … %20v1.1/TREIBER

Which only work on DOS and 3.1, not 9x and NT. No offense 😀

Will also work with Linux, Solaris and other OSes.
And it would work with Windows 9x if you patch your Driver.

Also NT5 will run ReactOS Mouse Driver, you just have to get the source change baudrate and recompile it.
I ran it fine on ReactOS too 😉

https://dosreloaded.de - The German Retro DOS PC Community
https://www.retroianer.de - under constructing since ever

Co2 - for a endless Summer

Reply 14 of 14, by matze79

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No one did yet,

PS/2 to Microsoft Serialmouse Adapter Converter / Updated First Post / Firmware Update added

i personally also had no need.
i don`t run Windows 9x on creepy slow machines without PS/2 Port.

It should also possible to run 3.x driver if added manually to the system ini files.
i did so for mouse systems mouse a few years ago.

https://dosreloaded.de - The German Retro DOS PC Community
https://www.retroianer.de - under constructing since ever

Co2 - for a endless Summer