Serial over Network - How to Share COM Ports over Network

The problem of accessing serial devices over a network

Serial port devices such as barcode scanners, GPS readers, specific industrial equipment, and various lab instruments typically use a serial cable connection to communicate with software on a computer.

When the device and computer are located some distance apart, a physical connection is impossible. Serial over network technology enables the device to be attached locally to a server and accessed remotely by the application running on a client machine. A simple example is an application running in the home office that interacts with barcode scanners in a variety of remote retail locations.

Practical solution

FlexiHub provides the capability to share serial ports over a network to allow devices to be accessed by remote users with full functionality. The tool offers advanced features such as secure serial over network data transfer and high-speed connectivity.

FlexiHub

Windows, macOS, Linux, Android
4.8 Rank based on 78+ users
FlexiHub features an intuitive interface that simplifies the process of sharing COM ports over the network.
FlexiHub

No extra hardware or cables are required making this an efficient and effective method of establishing remote serial communication.

FlexiHub is a versatile cross-platform solution that runs on Windows, Linux, and Mac systems. Sharing serial ports and devices between systems running different operating systems is fully supported.

How does Serial over Network work

Virtualization is the key to the power of FlexiHub. Using advanced port redirection technology, the software creates virtual serial ports that can be accessed by networked users. When an application looks for a serial interface with which to interact, it uses the virtualized port to communicate with an attached COM device.

serial over network software

From the application’s perspective, there is no difference between using a physical or virtual serial port. The functionality is the same.

Steps to connect serial over a network on Windows

Follow the steps below to share COM port via the network with FlexiHub:

  1. Register a FlexiHub account here.
  2. Start a free trial by selecting a required number of connections and acquiring a trial subscription.
  3. Download and install FlexiHub both on the local and remote computers.
  4. Launch the app and log in with your email and password.
  5. On the remote computer find a required device and click "Connect".

Here is a detailed video guide on sharing RS232 ports over a network:

This will connect your serial device to another machine over the network, and you will be able to access, browse, and manage it as if it were connected to your computer.

Sharing serial ports over a network on Linux

Connecting serial ports over the network on Linux is as easy as on Windows when you are using FlexiHub. You do not need to configure any additional parameters or fiddle with the console, just follow the same steps as in the paragraph above.

share serial over network

However, if you would like to be in control of the serial port settings like baud rate, parity, data bits, etc., you should try out Serial to Ethernet Connector for sharing serial devices over the network on Linux.

It is a professional solution that allows you to share any number of serial ports over the network, either physical or virtual. The workstation a shared device is plugged into serves as a server. Other computers connect to it as clients and gain access to the remote serial device.

FAQ

A serial network is a basic form of electronic data transmission in which data is sent sequentially over a computer bus or channel. Information is transferred by sending a sequence of single bits. It is a simpler method than parallel networks that transfer multiple bits simultaneously using a set of parallel lines or channels.
Install FlexiHub on the local and remote machines. Then, log into your FlexiHub account on both machines. Serial devices on the local machine will automatically become available to remote clients.

Conclusion

RS232 serial communication protocol has a reputation for being flexible, and it is well established. With the large number of affordable hardware and software solutions that have been developed for it, RS232 protocol is here to stay, and will most probably remain the most popular interface for industrial electronic equipment for quite some time. Therefore, a way for connecting to serial ports and devices over the network will remain relevant in the foreseeable future.

FlexiHub

Requirements: Windows XP/2003/2008/Vista/7/8/10/Server 2012/2016/2019
Size: 7MB
Version: 4.0.12820 ()
User rating: (4.8 based on 78+ users )