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Best RS232 to Ethernet Converter - 2023 extended guide

Olga Weis Olga Weis Feb 14, 2022

There are plenty of hardware solutions that let you convert RS232 data to Ethernet out there. In this article, I’m going to highlight the most popular and reliable ones so that you can compare the functionality and make your decision. If you wonder which of the modern serial to Ethernet converters is better than all the others and whether there’s a point in using a dedicated software tool instead of a hardware RS232 to Ethernet adapter, find the answer below.

Serial to Ethernet adapter from Electronic Team

The first solution in our selection is a professional RS232 to Ethernet converter app designed by Electronic Team. It is called Serial to Ethernet Connector and is known as a powerful serial to Ethernet adapter solution. The program has a streamlined interface that makes it easy to install and use.

The software has a clear advantage over the hardware serial to Ethernet adapters. It provides the ability to create an unlimited number of virtual serial ports when your physical machine has few real COM interfaces or doesn’t have them at all. The number of ports you can use with Serial to Ethernet Connector is only limited by your system’s capabilities.

Serial to Ethernet Connector
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RS232 to Ethernet extender key benefits:

  • Redirection of serial port devices over the TCP/IP and UDP/IP networks;
  • Support for Telnet protocol with the RFC 2217 extensions for COM port control;
  • Full emulation of physical serial port behavior, the ability to manage signal lines states of real and virtual COM ports;
  • Remote access to multiple serial interfaces at a time;
  • Traffic encryption option and authorization system, and more. The full feature list of the software is available by the link.

Serial to Ethernet Connector can be used on Windows platforms starting from Windows XP (x32 and x64) to Windows 10 (x32 and x64) and on ARM-based devices.

Perle IOLAN device server

perle iolan device server

Perle is a company that provides a wide variety of serial to Ethernet adapters. Depending on the form factor you need, you can choose among different Device Servers, Terminal Servers, and Console Servers. The common features in all Perle’s solutions are the support for IPv6 protocol and the ability to network a wide range of async devices.

If you want to remotely access a POS terminal, a PLC, or a card reader over TCP/IP, you can buy an IOLAN Device Server fitting from 1 to 8 RS232, RS422, or RS485 ports and communicate with your devices across the network.

Standard Perle’s converters come with DB9, RJ45, and DB25 serial connectors and are able to operate in hazardous locations.

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Serial port to Ethernet adapter by Antaira

Antaira serial to ethernet adapter

Another tool that may come in handy for sending serial data packets to Ethernet is the RS232 to Ethernet adapter by Antaira. The solution that is called the STE-708 Serial Device Server is an 8-port unit that works with RS232/RS422 and RS485-enabled devices and comes with dual LAN ports. With those ports, you can set up a ring topology network.

Also, the STE-708 device allows you to establish bi-directional communications with several devices across TCP/IP, which is especially convenient when using industrial environmental apps to manage COM port equipment such as security access controllers, CNC controllers, etc.

EMC protection and 2.5 KV optical isolation are the two more advantages offered by this product.

RS232 to Ethernet converter
14-day free trial

NetPort hardware for sharing RS232 to Ethernet

Netport hardware rs232 to ethernet

With a plug-and-play serial to Ethernet converter by NetPort, it’s simple to monitor any remote COM port device through your preferred Internet browser. All you need to do is connect the device that you want to network to the adapter’s RS232 port. The data from the peripheral will be converted and redirected over Ethernet thanks to the TCP/IP protocol stacks built into the NetPort solution.

MOXA NPort 5100 Series

moxa NPort 5110 device server

Our next pick is a compact 1-port NPort 5100 Device Server by MOXA. It is a simple yet efficient tool capable of connecting devices like card readers and payment terminals to an IP-based local network.

Why choose NPort 5100 hardware? It has everything you need to connect to a remote serial device from your PC over LAN. NPort offers a user-friendly Windows utility for configuring the device server. In addition, it gives you a way to control and manage your connections over Telnet, or via a web browser. Plus, you get an adjustable pull high/low resistor for RS-485 ports.

Serial to Ethernet adapter by Nordfield

nordfield serial to ethernet converters

Serial to Ethernet Converter by Nordfield - Dual is another common way to use serial port devices over LAN.

To configure this device, you should use a Windows utility that is provided as a part of the solution. It should be installed on your computer. The utility will help you create two virtual COM ports in your operating systems. The ports will be displayed in the Device Manager of your PC, which means you can open them with any application like they were real COM interfaces.

Now, any time you connect a real device to your serial to Ethernet adapter, the peripheral will be redirected to your computer over Ethernet in such a way that you can access it over a virtual serial port as though the device were attached directly to your computer.

Designed around a 32-Bit ARM 7 processor, Nordfield’s Serial to Ethernet Converter has proved to be a reliable and high-performance product.

Serial to Ethernet Connector
14-day free trial

RS232 to Ethernet convertor - SB800 EX 2 Port

netburner serial to ethernet server

As an alternative to the previous solutions, you may also consider the 2-Port Serial to Ethernet Server by NetBurner.

This versatile and secure Serial to Ethernet server allows sharing devices over Wi-Fi. What’s more, it makes it possible to network-enable serial devices out of the box – without any additional programming or development.

Hardware converter by Waveshare

waveshare rs232/485 to ethernet device

Our review wouldn’t be complete without the RS232/485 TO ETH solution - an industrial RS232/RS485 to Ethernet converter designed by Waveshare company.

Here’s why users choose this tool for data transmission between serial port devices across Ethernet:

  • It’s stable and reliable.
  • It offers 10/100M Auto-MDI/MDIX Ethernet interface for network communications.
  • It allows configuring the baudrate and parity check options.
  • It’s able to operate in different modes, including TCP server, TCP client, UDP server, UDP client, and HTTPD client.
  • It provides the ability to detect broken connections and auto reconnects devices, and more.

To sum up, I’d like to mention that a hardware solution will be a good choice for those who have no possibility to use a PC or ARM on the server side. Also, if you don’t think the installation of both the hardware device and accompanying software is a headache or you do not consider the price a critical factor, it might be a good idea to choose hardware serial to Ethernet converter.

As for the software tool, Serial to Ethernet Connector, it seems to be simple to use and more affordable than most of the hardware adapters. The program is not limited in the number of COM ports it can create and provides a bunch of advanced features and options that are not available in other products.

Serial to Ethernet Technology FAQ

The well-liked TCP/IP protocol, Telnet, allows users to create and establish connections with a remote computer. When the RFC 2217 extension is applied to Telnet, users can permit server and client machines to transmit configuration data from the Telnet IP port.

Note: Remote machines can be notified of alterations to the settings, as well as the condition/state of local serial ports.

The serial to ethernet adapter called Serial to Ethernet Connector, enables users to effortlessly forward serial port data via network connections (if RFC 2217 extensions are enabled.)
Users operating virtual machines can easily and efficiently share local serial ports and gain access to the devices connected to the interface with Serial to Ethernet Connector. Thanks to this handy little serial to Ethernet converter, virtual serial ports function identically to their hardware versions, fully emulating the parameters and behaviors of real-life serial ports.
Serial to Ethernet adapters/converters connect devices (using RS232, RS422, or RS485 serial interfaces) to specified local area networks—allowing serial data to travel via a wireless or physically-wired Ethernet network connection. Serial to Ethernet converters encapsulate serial data into Ethernet packets that best adapts to the transmitted data type.
Serial port communication devices are called by many different names: Serial to Ethernet converter, Serial to Ethernet Adapter, Console, or device server.

Regardless of what they are called, these tools are available in numerous models — developed based upon the number of fitted serial ports. Three options for serial to Ethernet hardware:
  • 1-port model
  • Multiport model
  • Wireless model

All of these options have their own unique use cases, allowing for users to discover their most efficient way of accessing remote serial ports without sacrificing their workflow preferences or styles.
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Serial to Ethernet Connector [Linux]

Requirements: Linux 32-bit or 64-bit
Version 8.0.822 (25 May, 2021) Download the trial version →