I just got my RS232 to TTL transceiver ("adapter") yesterday. It's a Sparkfun product listed as RS232 Shifter SMD in the catalog and on the Website. Since the computer I will be using has no RS232 (serial) port, I also ordered an RS232 to USB adapter cable.
Today I have tested the RS232 adapter cable and installed the drivers for it successfully. I now got myself a new COM port as seen in the Device Manager in Windows. So far so good.
Now, I want to run some simple test to verify that the Sparkfun transceiver is working properly as well. Honestly I'm a total novice on this subject, but I have read some on the Web about doing a "loopback test". It involves connecting the TX and RX together on the transceiver, and then sending some "randomly typed characters" which will be sent through TX and then if you get the same "message" in return through the RX it means that the TTL transceiver is communicating/working properly.
To make this kind of loopback test, the first thing I would need is a terminal emulation software which supports RS232 serial communication. This is in fact one of the main obstacles for me because I am using Windows Vista. As many of you probably know by now that, as of Windows Vista, the so popular terminal emulator called HyperTerminal is no longer included as part of Windows operating systems. It's a sad end for a nice software. (Damn you Microsoft!)
- What other option do I have now that HyperTerminal is no longer included in Windows Vista? I know that there is a ton of such terminal emulation softwares of many different flavors. But which one are equal or nearly equal to HyperTerminal or the commercial version of it (HyperAccess) and that is supported under Windows Vista?
What "message" do I type and send in the terminal software? Is it OK to just type some "random" characters like "ABCD" and see if it gets bounced back to me? Or is there some special command that can be used for loopback testing? (Check this PDF file: http://www.tronisoft.com/rs232info/RS23 ... verter.pdf)
Thanks in advance!