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Thursday, July 07, 2005

Ethernet LED


[click photo for gallery]

I found this freaking cool package yesterday called tleds which blinks the keyboard LED's when there's ethernet traffic. It blinks the Num lock for traffic down, and the Scroll lock for traffic up. Anyhow, I like this thing a whole lot... but I thought... what about the resources! This package is taking a whole like .03% of my CPU at least! So I needed a hardware solution...

It costs a whole $.25: All you need is a pair of wires (a twisted pair from a cat 5 cable works nicely), and a piece of 1 row pin header (click for an example of what that is). And some shrink tube if you're feeling professional. Oh and soldering skill... and a soldering iron +1.

I took pictures so you could see how you do it, but basically, wire the led on your ethernet card to the pins, and plug the pins into the Turbo LED plug. And some pointers: The ethernet card will have one LED that tells you that it's plugged in at all, and the other one blinks when there's some data going through... You'd want to use the one that blinks, because its far more interesting than just a solid light. Polarity isn't a big deal, if it doesn't work when plugged in one way, just turn the plug around and it should work. Oh yes... and a disclaimer:

Disclaimer: This information is provided with NO WARRANTY. The author takes no responsibility for the actions of other persons who may attempt to execute the described actions. So if you misinterpret Turbo LED for 220v power line and ethernet card for mom, and hurt your mom, or hurt anything else including your self, or feel sad because you broke your ethernet card, or burn yourself soldering, or whatever else that you might want to blame me for, It is not my fault.

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5 pillowblog: Ethernet LED [click photo for gallery] I found this freaking cool package yesterday called tleds which blinks the keyboard LED's when there's...

13 comments:

Anonymous said...

thats very cool
-firewire

Kibiyama said...

Haha, soldering iron +1... Very nice hack.

Anonymous said...

Add a large capacitor. Did this to my HDD light cause i hate the blinking...god the blinking..... it makes it seethe with electroluminescent anger.

Anonymous said...

What size of capacitor would be appropriate for this application?

Thank you!

Shaddack said...

Leet mod. You can make it uber-leet; having two LEDs for Rx and Tx, or one red-green LED. For the details, refer to the RTL8139C datasheet; this chip, the most common on the cheap Ethernet cards, has three LED outputs, on pins 97-99; only two are commonly used on most cards. Their meaning is configurable in the bits 7 and 6 of the register 0x52 in the RTL8139C chip, you want the "10" combination that makes the pin 99 act as Tx and pin 97 as Rx. They can be set permanently in the configuration EEPROM on the card. Warning, you have to be comfortable with soldering on the very fine pins on the SMD chip, if the line 97 is not used and available somewhere else on the card as a suitable soldering pad (99 is usually used as the activity light, 98 tends to be the Link).

pillowcase said...

damn that _is_ uber-leet.

Anonymous said...

who still has a case w/ a turbo LED these days anyway ;-)
that said it's a cool mod, and if i DID have a turbo LED i'd do it...

Anonymous said...

You live in Canada?.......HAHAHHAHAHAHAHAH U already lost

P said...

http://www.virtual-hideout.net/guides/nic_leds_mod/index.shtml

pillowcase said...

pwned

Philippe said...

Nice blog you got here! I'll have to try that ethernet led thing myself.

Miko Fulla said...

"a whole like .03% of my CPU at least!"
Oh man you're great andy.... *wipes tear from eye*

Anonymous said...

Anything like the tled prog. for Windows??

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