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Question

Remote Bluetooth Access

by rowan.bradley / March 21, 2018 8:26 AM PDT

What is the best/cheapest way of getting Bluetooth coverage remote from my PC? I have some Bluetooth devices in my home that are too far from my PC for a direct Bluetooth connection to work. I have both wired LAN and WiFi throughout the house, so it seems that what I need is a device that can either create a Bluetooth zone using the WiFi network, or by plugging into the wired LAN, so that I can then contact these Bluetooth devices via the Ethernet network. Does this exist? Please suggest how I can best meet this requirement.

Thanks - Rowan

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All Answers

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Answer
While it is entirely possible
by R. Proffitt Forum moderator / March 21, 2018 10:40 AM PDT

The thing is that no one I know has created such a thing for deployment by end users. That is, there are technical ways to do this say with a smart phone that connects to the bluetooth and relays the traffic to a custom app on your PC but this would be full custom and have severe issues that once you get into Bluetooth programming will have you go "Why did I ever think up this idea?"

Me? Just an author of apps that we use Bluetooth links to devices and have more than a basic understanding.

So, this is why there are more and more devices that use WiFi for the new Smart Home push.

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So how do I get a solution?
by rowan.bradley / March 21, 2018 11:30 AM PDT

I don't really have much of an alternative. I could dispose of the Bluetooth devices and buy WiFi or Z-Wave ones (I'm not aware that such an item exists), or I could install a PC close to the Bluetooth devices. But these are really totally inelegant solutions. In these days when I can buy a full Unix microcomputer with WiFi for about £10, it cannot require a whole PC to do this job. So if I have to do this, what is the best way?

There are a couple of "Bluetooth Access Points" on the market (Netgear and Belkin), but it sounds as if they are designed to give Bluetooth users access to LAN resources (e.g. internet connection), not the other way round, which is what I need. Nevertheless, they must contain the required hardware. Could one of these be reprogrammed to give the necessary functionality? Many such devices run some flavour of Unix, and some of them can be reprogrammed, so this question may come around to: if I have a Unix computer, what software would I need (most of it hopefully already existing) to get this Bluetooth/LAN connectivity that I am aiming for?

Thanks - Rowan

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I don't think you can "get" a solution.
by R. Proffitt Forum moderator / March 21, 2018 11:35 AM PDT

My work in Bluetooth both in hardware and apps (apps as in PalmOS, Windows Mobile, Android, Windows and embedded single board computers) tell me that it is possible to make a solution. But it will take time and effort to get this to happen.

You might run into stumbling blocks like some maker of a bluetooth thing won't reveal how to talk to the device. Or other blocks.

But a ready to use solution? Unlikely. I'm sure someone will bring up the old Bluetooth PAN but I will defer to them to show that working.

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An example result of Ethernet to Bluetooth.
by R. Proffitt Forum moderator / March 21, 2018 11:36 AM PDT
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