Sniffer hardware: USB stick interface and GPS

April 26, 2013

746_LRG

Connecting a USB stick to a microcontroller is not trivial; there are lots of bare-bones USB host implementations out there that seem attractive on the surface.

I looked at the Arduino ADK board, the SparkFun USB Host board and the Circuits@Home USB Host Shield and they all use something like the MAX3421E chip to talk to the USB host and leave all the messy protocol stuff for the buyer to handle. Not surprisingly, nobody has posted a way to talk to a USB stick, as it is a fairly complex operation (lots of XBOX and PlayStation interfaces have been written though, and the Arduino ADK talks nicely to an Andoid phone.)

I did find a cool item in the UK; the HobbyTronics USB Host Controller Board V2. All of the complex USB programming is contained on a 24FJ64GB002 microcontroller so there is no USB coding required. I ordered 2 of them for a total cost with shipping of $52.00 Implementation details are here.

I’m also going with the adafruit Ultimate GPS Breakout; the price is $39.95 and it should be super easy to interface with.

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