Connect your VP over Ethernet - Inexpensively*

  • If you already have a Serial logger.

RS-232 Serial to Ethernet TCP/IP device servers used to be quite expensive, I paid about $200 for a major brand one some years ago (and it took multiple calls to tech support to get it configured) but now they are available from China for less than $30. Add your own power supply (5 volts with a common connector, you probably have one left over from some unused piece of gear), some kind of box, a 9 pin gender changer (or two male DB9 connectors and three pieces of wire) and you have an easy way to connect a Davis VP(2) with a serial weatherlink to the PC through your network.

The documentation isn’t very clear but I’ve done it a couple of times so here’s the quick guide to making it work:

The “server” comes with software on a mini-CD. Connect the power supply, and connect to your network. Start the TCPIP-232-V4.0.exe (version may change) and hit the “Search in LAN” button. You should see that it has found the server at its default address. (If your network does not use 192.168 addresses you may have to connect the server direct the to PC to change the IP.)

Make the changes as highlighted below.

TCP Server!
The (fixed) IP you choose should be compatible with your network set up.
Default gateway is usually your router IP.
Baud Rate 19200 = Default for the Davis VP(2)

Hit “Setup via NET”, you should get a success message in the log window. Wait a while and hit “Search in LAN” again, you should see that the server has been found at the new IP.

From the weather PC ping the IP of the unit, if it responds you are in business.

Connect the weatherlink serial connector to the 9 pin connector on the server. Uh oh, they are both female connectors, so we need a gender changer which is two male connectors back to back with the transmit and receive connections reversed. You can buy or, if you can solder, make one of these. Male DB9’s are only $2.49 each at Radio Shack and for this application you only need connect three pins between them.

If you are running WD you can connect directly using TCP/IP mode. Open Control Panel, Com Port, TCP/IP Connection tab and enter the IP and port number of the unit and check “Enabled”, and hit “OK”.

Save and exit, and restart WD and data should start to be collected. Assumes WD was already setup for the VP, if not you’ll need to use Control Panel, Station Type, first to do that.

I don’t know if WD supports other brand serial stations directly over TCP/IP and I don’t have another serial station to test with, but I do run other serial devices over my network using virtual com port software so I imagine any serial station would work that way. If anyone wants the virtual serial port setup then ask and I will post it. I did not find the supplier’s suggested virtual comport software to be any use but I know of another good and free one that works on W7/32 and W7/64.

Nice job! Thanks for posting documentation.

I like the looks of this, is it reliable i.e. what is your current up-time with this setup?

I would say that for me it’s very close to the same reliability as a serial connection, but of course reliability varies between users even for a standard setup. Generally my WD systems have always been very stable. It’s been a while since I’ve regularly run WD this way but I have another serial instrument connected through one of these servers, which is in turn connected to the network via powerline networking unit, and that’s been running 24x7 without any comm issues since late last year. It’s pretty simple on the PC side, with WD using TCP/IP there is no extra driver involved, and it’s not like the WLIP which is trying to serve more clients than it was designed to handle. There is the same (as with WLIP) potential issue with power failure since the PC may continue to run on a UPS collecting no data because the network is down.

Great idea, I may drop for one of these (made by the same outfit as far as I can tell) to have a play around with this…

That one is for direct connection to processor, it doesn’t support regular serial port voltage levels. I’m not sure if it would work directly with the console, i.e. without a weatherlink, interesting thought though…

Doh, I hadn’t spotted the TTL bit! :oops:

Did your version of this come with the software required to configure it, or do you download it from somewhere?

Both the ones I have came with a mini CD, but there is a download link too.

Ta, the aslo do a D9 version of that board without the RS485 capability.

…and it’s only

Hi Guys

I am thinking of going down this route converting my VP2 RS232 communication interface over ethernet as I am going to build a new server, this will include my file shares and WD execution, the new server will be located in my garage and my VP2 console indoors.

I was wondering if you guys were still using this RS232<->Ethernet bridge in your setup to get a feel for how stable it is and any long term experience using these communications bridge?
I am a little nervous introducing new hardware when my weather station setup as it is fairly stable but looks like the way forward.


A similar solution, including the logger (I think) is developed by belfryboy: Davis to Wifi TCP/IP link

Another solution is using a Meteobridge inside your home next to the console. It will need a LAN connection (wireless or cabled) and then will pass-thru your logger in the console. For WD it will just look like a Davis WL-ip logger.
You will then have two weather-programs talking to the same Davis logger.


I have been using this method for the last 2-3 years and have the adapters powered via a UPS so no data loss due to power outage.


I’m not currently using it with the VP but I have a couple of other instruments connected this way that run 24x7 and they have been rock solid for several years. I think mostly it will depend on the stability of your network. By definition wired will be more stable than wifi since you don’t have multiple devices fighting over the same bandwidth/connection and it will be way less susceptible to interference from e.g. microwave ovens.

Thanks for the feedback guys.

I think I will order some cheap Chinese ones off ebay and try them out in a test setup (tap off the VP2 console RS232 transmit and monitor it on another PC) and see how well it performs before I integrate it in to my live weather station setup.

and the neighbors… Yep I totally agree with you here and only use wireless when I have to e.g. tablets, mobile phones, etc. I have currently been installing cat6 around my house including a link for my new server which will include my Weather Display execution hence the use of the RS232<->Ethernet converters.