Work at SourceForge, help us to make it a better place! We have an immediate need for a Support Technician in our San Francisco or Denver office.


Direct PCMCIA Serial Interface

Eric Agan
  • Eric Agan
    Eric Agan

    Forgive me if this has already been asked, but I cannot find any information ANYWHERE on the internet. I'm trying to figure out how to interface a microcontroller to a serial pcmcia card directly. Not just any card, though, specifically a Sierra Wireless AirCard 710. All I need is serial communication with it. I've been looking over the pcmcia-cs code at various points and from what I understand I need to, other than provide power, talk to the AirCard via the first 8 data lines on the card. Correct me if I'm wrong, please!
    What I need to know is what is the function of these first 8 lines in regards to a serial pc card. Is there any specific protocol I need to use? Etc.. If anyone could explain how wrong I probably am, or where to go from here, please help! Thanks a million!

    - slax0r

    • David Hinds
      David Hinds

      You're wrong.

      If you want to interface a microcontroller to a PCMCIA card, you need to get a book about the PCMCIA bus interface.  There are a lot more signals you need to think about than just 8 data lines; the PCMCIA interface is a regular parallel bus, with address lines, data lines, and various control signals, that all need to be implemented correctly.

      You would also need to familiarize yourself with the correct procedure for powering up, interrogating configuration data, and configuring a PCMCIA card.

      Then for a serial card, nearly all present a basic serial "UART" register interface based on the 8250 UART or an extended version like the 16550.  Wireless cards often have additional registers beyond the basic UART register set, but vendor documentation for these extended registers is rarely forthcoming.

      So, you have a lot of reading to do.

      -- Dave

      • Eric Agan
        Eric Agan

        Thanks for the info, I guess I'll start reading right away!