Virtual Here - USB server

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  • Updated 11 months ago
Hi all,

This is a minor spin off from my SPE amp control thread.  I wanted to tell everyone here about a really amazing product that can help you with those pesky USB devices!

I call USB Pesky because of its short distance limitation and how poorly some devices do at plug-n-play.   But USB is here to stay and more and more devices we hams use are USB based.

So when I got my SPE 2K-FA It now has a USB port and the console software to run the amp is actually very cool.  Rather than continue with my own software product which I had started I decided to see if there was a way I could use the SPE console app remote.

This meant using USB remote.

So I was aware of some various USB "anywhere" type products.  Most expensive, some require special hardware etc.   But in my search I stumbled across:

http://www.virtualhere.com/

I was a little skeptical but decided to give it a try.  At $39 for 3 device server I figured it was low risk.  Plus the site offers servers for many OS combinations.  Raspberry Pi is one of them.

This fit my need perfectly since I have a Raspberry Pi currently serving as my "control interface" for my remote control stuff.

So I downloaded the server.  Install was SUPER EASY.   Nothing really to do except set it up to run on reboot of the Pi.

I then downloaded the client on my Windows machine and right away it found the Pi.  Selecting the desired device to use worked right away and then the SPE console program fired right up and was happy.

So I remoted into my work machine.  I installed the client there and in my local router I opened port 7575 between my control Pi and the outside world.   In the client at work I entered my DDNS address and right away there was the SPE 2K device.

So I connected and the console program fired up right away just fine.  I controlled a few things and it worked beautifully.

So I ordered the server for $39.  The transaction when right through and I was given a key.  On my windows client I entered the key and the server was now licensed.

As I used it I found little things I would like to have.  Like if I have used a device on one computer then move to another computer I wanted a way to remote disconnect the device so I could use it on the computer I'd just moved to.

So I emailed the support line and 10 minutes later Micheal comes back and tells me it is easy.  Just run the client with a flag of -a for administrator and you can force disconnect the remote user.   GREAT!  Problem solved.

Another few days went by and I wanted access to one my devices actually on the Raspberry Pi.  The USB server was holding on to it.  So I emailed Micheal again and asked if I could use the client on the same Pi as the server to solve this problem.

He even had a better solution.  In the config file for the server you can set a flag that releases the devices to the Pi until they are asked for to be used by remote client.  Again!  Another little issue solved!

The software seems to be very well written.  Requires no additional stuff to be installed, depends only on one linux library and it just freaking works!

So I cannot recommend it high enough!  If you need to use ANY USB device remotely I strongly suggest you look into VirtualHere.  He offers servers for Linux, Windows, Mac OS and for me the idea of a $30 Raspberry Pi that can do this job is phenomenal.   

If you do decide to buy, let Micheal know I sent you over!   I won't get any discounts or special deals but I just want him to know that I did recommend his great product.

Mark - WS7M
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Mark WS7M

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Posted 11 months ago

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