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Jeff Geerling on Twitter: “I plug computers into my computers…”

Posted by jpluimers on 2022/04/20

Hopefully the picture below is the board of a PCIe KVM board based on a Raspberry Pi Compute Module 4 supporting Power over Ethernet (PoE).

At least it seems to looking at the thread started by [Wayback/Archive] Jeff Geerling on Twitter: “I plug computers into my computers… “:

It would also very much match the below issue that Jeff raised:

[Wayback/Archive] PCI Express BliKVM? · Issue #14 · ThomasVon2021/pikvm-CM4-Board

Something I mentioned in the Skype group chat, but forgot to formally request / document here, is a request to consider making the same basic board as BliKVM, but as a PCI Express card.
Now, it would be a dummy card—it couldn’t leech power off the 12v rail because when the PC is powered off, BliKVM would shut down too.
But it would basically slot into one of the PCIe slots on a PC motherboard, then internally, you can connect the front panel stuff (ATX power, reset, HDD, and activity).
Externally, it would have the following ports:
  • OTG (to connect externally to one of the PC’s USB ports)
  • USB-C power input
  • Ethernet
  • HDMI input
  • (if it fits) microSD — though this could be internal to save space if you want to make a compact height card
  • (if it fits) a hole for WiFi antenna connector
The microSD might need to be internal on the board itself (maybe on the top edge) to save space on the back. It would be really neat to be able to slot in an IP KVM inside a PC directly, so I don’t have to have an extra box with a jungle of cables hanging out the back.
and the BliKVM the mentioned:

Such a PCIe based KVM should be a lot more affordable than a [Wayback/Archive] ASRock Rack > PAUL low-profile PCIe IPMI card based on their ASPEED AST2500 (via [Wayback/Archive] PiKVM on PCI-E? : homelab).

Anyway, back to the picture that Jeff posted:

There is little text found on the board, but enough to be very promising:

  • FAN
  • ACT
  • USB-PC
  • PWR
  • BT1220
  • I2S
  • OLED
  • CSI-2
  • Compute Module 4
  • PCle
  • POE jumper

Another option of course is to actually have a 64-bit ARM machine inside an x86-64 machine for development purposes: [Wayback/Archive] 37 on Twitter: “@geerlingguy Reminds of the following video. … I’d love to have an ARM CPU alongside the X86_64 I’m currently using. I hope for more of these carrier boards to appear, the possibilities are “endless”.”:

[Wayback/Archive] Intel said this may not work – but it does. Intel NUC 9: The PC within a PC. – YouTube


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