How to Configure a TAP Carrier Using a Serial Connection Transcript for Video:
Welcome to the video tutorial on how to configure PageGate to use serial based TAP. In this tutorial, we’ll be going over how to configure PageGate to use an RS232/serial line to deliver messages to a serial connected TAP terminal.
Before we begin, virtual machines are becoming more and more ubiquitous. Unfortunately, virtual machines can’t typically interact with physical hardware, like serial lines. There are, however, serial and COM port virtualizers that can provide virtual machines access to physical hardware. So, if you’re running PageGate in a virtual environment, it’s still entirely possible to use a serial line communicate with a TAP terminal.
To communicate with a directly connected TAP terminal, there are two pieces of information you’ll need:
- The COM port that the serial/RS232 is plugged in to
- The communication parameters (baud rate, parity, data bits, and stop bits) required by the TAP terminal.
Once you have that information, here’s how to configure PageGate.
First, open the PageGate Admin.
Next, expand the Connectors section.
Each connector in the program can be configured to use a serial port. If you’re using multiple connectors, you can select any of your available connectors to tie the serial port to.
So, expand the connector you want to tie the serial port to and go to the Settings sub-section.
Set the “Serial Port” field to match the port the cable is plugged in to and check ‘Direct Connect’ to indicate that this is a serial, not a modem, connection.
Now that we’ve told PageGate where to find the serial line, we can add the carrier. Right click on Carriers and select ‘Add’.
Give the carrier a name.
Set the Protocol to: TAP
Leave the phone number field blank.
Set the Baud Rate, Data Bits, Parity and Stop bits to match the receiving TAP terminal’s requirements. The industry standard for TAP is 1200 baud, even parity, 7 data bits and 1 stop bit.
In the ‘Init String’ field, enter the word direct in all lower case letters.
The ‘Max Chars’ field determines the maximum number of characters that can be sent in a single message. Typically speaking, when communicating to an on-site TAP terminal, you’ll set this to 240.
When finished, click Apply.
Now all that remains is adding a recipient that uses the new carrier. To do that, right click on the Recipients section and select ‘Add’.
Give the recipient a name.
Set the carrier to your serial based TAP carrier.
In the ID/PIN field, enter the pager number.
You’ll notice that there’s a second Max Characters field here in the recipient as well. The carrier max characters value determines the number of characters that can be delivered in a single message and the recipient max characters value determines the number of characters you want to send to this person. So, if the recipient value is higher than the carrier value, the program will break up long messages in to multiple messages based on the carrier’s value.
For example, let’s say we’re sending pages and that your carrier Max Chars value is 240. Let’s then also say that we’ve set the recipient value to 480. If we send a 300 character message, PageGate will break that up in to one 240 character message and one 60 character message. If we send a 500 character message, everything after the 480th character will be lost.
When finished, click Apply.
This concludes the video tutorial on how to configure PageGate to deliver messages to a directly connected TAP terminal.