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ICEBOX Serial Console Adapter Pin Out

June 15th, 2010 by chwilk

Although our data center requires remote management capability for all servers, occasionally something lands that doesn’t have the ability for whatever reason. Rather than driving down to the data center every time we (and by we, I mean the researcher and I) want to test a new kernel, we decided that we needed a remote management solution.

Fortunately, we happened to have some old Linux Networkx ICE BOX node management devices (power control, temperature monitoring, and serial console over LAN) languishing in storage after the cluster they managed was retired. Unfortunately, Linux Networkx appears to be out of business, there is no Google-able documentation for the ICE BOX on line, and the serial console adapters were all thrown out when the cluster was retired.

However, thanks to an RS-232 break out box picked up from EPO, and a few hours of playing with an RJ-45 to DB9 adapter, I have a working pin-out for an ICEBOX serial terminal, and will record it here for future poor schmucks who find themselves in my position.

I only worked out the TD, RD, and SG lines, if you need flow control (and know how to make the ICEBOX use it!) you’re on your own.

From the RJ-45 end, I used wires 2, 3, and 5 (according to the accounting on, and using the same RJ-45 to DB9 adapter as Dan Gottesman’s website, http://www.ossmann.com/5-in-1.html).

RJ-45 Signal DB-9 Signal
2 (orange) RD 3 TD
3 (black) TD 2 RD
5 (green) SG 5 SG

Update: A very kind soul in the Los Alamos HPC group has posted scans of ICEBOX documentation: http://institute.lanl.gov/data/linuxnetworxinfo/ Thanks to Christian Ritter for the link.