5 years, 9 months ago.

Dual NIC solutions?

Can anyone recommend a project out there that is using 2 NICs with an mbed-based board, like the FRDM-K64F? That ARM only has one peripheral for Ethernet, but I was wondering if there are any other options. Currently, I am considering using a Wiznet chip to get the 2nd port, but the socket limitation is a problem for me.

Question relating to:

mbed IP library over Ethernet ethernet, ip, mbed

You won't find dual ethernet in the MBED type devices, if you must have 2 then the only option I know is the TI AM335X boards. See http://www.ti.com/tool/tmdssk3358 and http://www.ti.com/tool/tmdsice3359, these are both $200 and the dev kit is available free from TI, they run Linux, android or TI's embedded real time OS all of which are free.

posted by marian szczepkowski 19 Sep 2014

Thanks, Marian, I'm going to check out that board. I will probably have to research the Linux option, because their StarterWare uses the lwIP TCP/IP stack, which is the same as the mbed TCP/IP stack I am using, and it seems to be limited to only 4 simultaneous connections.

posted by Dave M 19 Sep 2014

A few weeks ago, I had a similar problem like you. Anyway, I solved the problem using namespace keyword. Please refer to the below link.


posted by Steve Kim 29 Jul 2015

2 Answers

5 years, 9 months ago.

There are no devices with more than one NIC. The Wiznet solution is your only mbed option with a single CPU.

You might need to use two devices and communicate between them with I2c or similar.

To get dual NIC capability on a single CPU you're looking at Cortex A8 or better, and Linux or Windows Embedded, not mBed.


Accepted Answer

Ah yes, that was another consideration, just use two mbed-based devices and SPI / I2C. Thanks also for the suggestion about having to look at a different family for the feature I need!

posted by Dave M 18 Sep 2014

You're welcome. Sorry I couldn't be much help. The lowest end dual NIC device I know of is the AM335x series from TI. These are actually used in the BeagleBone Black devices, but they only put one NIC on that. There are quite a few SOM vendors that do implement the dual NIC faeture, and in fact the TI starter kit for that device does - see http://www.ti.com/tool/tmdssk3358 - different world of pricing to an mbed though, but $200 for what it is is not bad, touich screen LCD and all. I use one of these quite often and it's a nice kit.

Phytec is one SOM vendor with both a core board and SBC that support dual NICs, cheaper than the TI starter kit, and suitable for production environments. There are plenty more.

Phytec SOM: http://phytec.com/products/system-on-modules/phycore/am335x/ Phytec SBC: http://phytec.com/products/single-board-computers/phyboard-am335x/

posted by Philllip Dimond 18 Sep 2014

Thanks, Philip, Phytec was definitely on my list of vendors to look at. I'll also check out that TI dev board!

posted by Dave M 18 Sep 2014
5 years, 9 months ago.

Depending on what you actually want to do you might want to look at reprogramming a router? Obviously that's no good for a commercial project but then you'd just get a development kit for a part with the two NIC anyway.

One way to give an MBED another Ethernet port might be to look at SPI ethernet adapters such as the ones made by Microchip. Unfortunately I have no idea how to make the device driver.

I had considered your first suggestion, but I'll likely have to go with a separate adapter. If I do that, the best option is to use the Wiznet parts, like W5500 instead of Microchip's, the reason being that the former has the TCP/IP stack in silicon, meaning that I only have to issue commands over SPI to get at the data. Thanks!

posted by Dave M 18 Sep 2014