Successful wifi mod of the Botvac?

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Re: Successful wifi mod of the Botvac?

Postby gmanor77 » September 13th, 2015, 6:03 am

Hi,

I have been interested to make my Neato XV-21 wireless.
I want to be able to make it start clean when I am out of home using WIFI.
I saw the modification Lurch did with Arietta G25 - I understand the hardware side but I need more explanation on the software side.
Another thing is that Neato won't start to clean when USB is connected - how do I bypass this limitation?

Thanks.
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Re: Successful wifi mod of the Botvac?

Postby mfortuna » September 13th, 2015, 10:31 am

I don't think this issue has been solved by anyone. I don't think the Neato designers considered a USB connection via a wifi design and assume with a cable plugged in the Neato shouldn't start.
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Re: Successful wifi mod of the Botvac?

Postby glnc222 » September 13th, 2015, 1:00 pm

The Botvac software has been reported as not demanding the USB cable be removed when starting to clean.
The XV software demanded removal. However, the connection can be remade after the XV starts, according to some posts. A transceiver mounted in the Neato and connected to the USB port can either be supplemented with some sort of relay or mosfet to interrupt the power line in the USB cable, or the firmware in the transceiver can be modified to control the USB connection as needed. When a USB cable is connected to a Windows PC, there is a Microsoft utility program which can turn the USB ports on and off (see the Mods & Repairs list main forum page). Whether it is easy to make these additions is another issue. There is no ready made product for expanding the Neato with wireless features. It is usually easier to add such functions within the design of the system and its own firmware.
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Re: Successful wifi mod of the Botvac?

Postby gmanor77 » September 14th, 2015, 8:27 am

Hi,

Can some one post here the software side of this issue?
How do I compile the kernel of the arietta etc.
Thank you.
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Re: Successful wifi mod of the Botvac?

Postby glnc222 » November 27th, 2015, 2:37 am

Raspberry Pi Zero released
In case of interest a new version of Raspberry Pi has been released at only $5 due to efficiencies.
Only 3cm x 6cm board. 512MB of Ram, 1GHz processor, HDMI, USB, and memory card sockets.
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Re: Successful wifi mod of the Botvac?

Postby MadAEng » June 26th, 2019, 1:33 pm

Sorry to kick up an old topic, but I’ve been searching the web for days and I’m slowly getting desperate...

I’m basically looking to do the same as lurch, only with a raspi zero W.
The only problem is that darn USB port. I’ve tried soldering my own cables together, of which I’m pretty sure I’ve got the pinout right, but it still doesn’t seem to work.
So, does anyone have a link to a usb cable that might fit the cramped space? I’ll put it together with another one to connect it to the pi.

Or maybe someone has some tips on how to solder that darn connector together? I’ve soldere together pcb’s plenty of times, but I think I’m frying the connector a bit too much to keep the pins in place properly.
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Re: Successful wifi mod of the Botvac?

Postby glnc222 » June 27th, 2019, 10:47 pm

Maybe not relevant but there is a serial port with an edge connector on the Botvac, see post in other Botvac WiFi thread http://www.robotreviews.com/chat/viewtopic.php?p=140174&sid=f7f9380ac5f43d4bd80a5c06dc7dad47#p140174
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Re: Successful wifi mod of the Botvac?

Postby MadAEng » June 28th, 2019, 1:43 am

glnc222 wrote:Maybe not relevant but there is a serial port with an edge connector on the Botvac, see post in other Botvac WiFi thread http://www.robotreviews.com/chat/viewtopic.php?p=140174&sid=f7f9380ac5f43d4bd80a5c06dc7dad47#p140174


I’ve looked at soldering one end of a USB cable on there, but if I’m not mistaken the Botvac board works on 3.3V while the pi works on 5V. Sounds like a bad idea to take that route unless I find a way to convert the signal.
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Re: Successful wifi mod of the Botvac?

Postby glnc222 » June 30th, 2019, 10:02 pm

Actually that edge connector is not a USB interface but a standard serial interface I think, requiring different electronic signals interface (simpler than USB) -- old RS232... USB requires specific drivers in the device firmware for it, some IC's specialized in making the signals, USB drivers, more capable than old plain serial. See the projects using that connector for details. The connector pins are fully described in the threads and standard cable connectors are available for the edge connector.
To use the USB connector on the Botvac, it might be necessary to modify the dust bin which covers it, to make room for plugs. The edge connector came to the rescue in other projects.
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Re: Successful wifi mod of the Botvac?

Postby MadAEng » July 4th, 2019, 7:15 pm

Ok, so as the HAT for RS232 includes a serial connector and is too bulky to begin with, that would lead me to something like this max3232 converter:
https://www.sparkfun.com/products/11189

After sorting out how to hook up the leads on both sides, GPIO and edge, that should do the trick on the hardware side, correct?
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Re: Successful wifi mod of the Botvac?

Postby glnc222 » July 4th, 2019, 8:49 pm

I am not familiar in detail with the Arietta but it appears from this specification
http://static6.arrow.com/aropdfconversion/eae04869000fad7c270e760cd6325ebb3fc8d39c/pgurl_arietta.pdf
that it includes "UART" interface pins -- three sets -- which might be standard serial instead of the USB -- used then only for programming with the PC. The "UART" pins might connect directly to the Neato serial connector without any adapter you mentioned.
More detailed info on the Arietta is needed. As such serial interfaces are common, one would expect it to be the case.
All sorts of gadgets for Arduino microcontrollers have them, for instance. What you would do for software is another question, whether there are support libraries etc. which can simplify your own programming.

Note the serial interface is TTL voltage levels not the RS232 standard for connections and cables over distance using 12v -- just the signal meanings are the same...
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Re: Successful wifi mod of the Botvac?

Postby MadAEng » July 5th, 2019, 7:23 am

Thnx for the info on that one!
As far as I can tell, the Arietta looks like a decent solution. However, it still needs an additional wifi-module, and I'm not sure if it has any kind of GUI, which I find to come in handy a lot of times.

This is the point where I have to admit that I'm a n00b when it comes to single-board computing, and unfamiliar with running anything but raspberries.
I also have a plan to integrate a Pi-cam into it later on, so, I'm gonna stay in my comfort zone with this one and use the MAX3232.

Configuring the software for the serial/GPIO interface should be exactly the same as with the HAT, everything else should remain pretty much the same as just hooking it up to the USB port. That's the point I want to start my own interface program from.
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Re: Successful wifi mod of the Botvac?

Postby glnc222 » July 5th, 2019, 3:13 pm

Arietta USB-to-Serial adapter cheap (just a cable?)
https://www.acmesystems.it/USB-3V-SER
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Re: Successful wifi mod of the Botvac?

Postby MadAEng » July 7th, 2019, 9:18 am

Good one too! (Although the sparkfun board is actually cheaper ;) )
If I would've come across that one earlier I might have gone for that one...

The thing is that I would then need to fit in another USB-OTG adapter. Not impossible, but definitely a pain in the rear!
If the sparkfun board doesn't work out, I'll give that a go!
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