Amiga PPP to RPI via Null Modem

31 May 2024

computer Amiga

Amiga 1200

Amiga 1200

I was lucky enough to add an A1200 to my family of Amigas. I started off with a good look over and had to do some restoration. This A1200 has had a full recap, SD IDE adapter w/led light fix all done. Now that I had gotten that work completed along with a good cleaning I wanted to connect to the internet.


I was lucky that the A1200 came with a working IDE 2.5 inch HD! It also has a Blizzard A1260 card with 8 MiB of RAM in the belly slot. I was very happy with this pickup for sure. I still have a few issues from the restoration that I need to work though (heat and a video artifacts when it gets hot) but that is a topic for a different day.


Why did I want to connect to the network? Well I didn't have a good way to connect the 2.5 inch IDE drive up to anything that would actually read it beside the A1200. I tried a cheap IDE to USB adapter that I did plug into a linux box but would have no part of the drive for some reason. I tried several times as I really wanted to use the dd command to take a nice disk image with no joy. So well plan B... What can we do here...


So self what can I do with things I already have?

The goal was to connect via a generic setup that I can use on any Amiga that I have or acquire in the future? Lets get this machine connected to the Internet in a way that any of my Amiga's can use. So that rules out using a PCMCIA card. I do have a PlipBox but I could not get it to work so the Serial port it is. There are many options to be online anymore but most are not cheaper and I had the necessary parts already around the house.


So I have this Raspberry Pi 1 that wasn't doing anything and really isn't overly fast enough to do a whole lot anymore.. We have our gateway.

I already had a USB to Serial adapter with lights! RPi saw this and it works like a champ along with being able to see that we can talk, send and receive. Nice.

Next though my bin of connecters I have a Null modem adapter, score!

Next to finish it off a serial cable to give us all the things we need hardware wise to connect up any of my Amiga's with a nice serial link.

Speed Limit

You ask about speed? Well this is NOT fast by any means but it is functional. Some of this is the journey and can we do something more so how fast can it be done.


The hard drive in the A1200 luckily wasn't full and already setup as 2 partitions. I loaded the lharc archiver onto the machine and archived the 1st partition to the 2nd partition as a file. Once that was done I transferred the data the my ftp server on the RPi.

Once this was done I removed the archive and then archived the 2nd partition to the 1st.

So now I have the data off to my local RPi I can then save what was archived. I tested the archive to ensure nothing bad happened in transfer.

I am very happy that the Amiga allowed a backup to be done like this.



So how did I setup all of this? I am here to share that knowledge as well. You can create your own mini bridge to your modern internet.

Raspberry Pi

Raspberry Pi

On the Raspberry Pi I have the Raspbian Linux distro installed.

Install the vsftpd package as we are going to use the ftp protocol to move the files around. Yes this is a plain text protocol but since it is just going across my local network I am not overly concerned about that. Also then I don't have the deal with TLS and encryption overhead that does use a decent amount of processing.


Edit the /etc/vsftpd.conf file:

Ensure these include:



Setup the PPP server on the Raspberry Pi:

Install ppp package

to start the ppp package:

  sudo /usr/sbin/pppd noauth /dev/ttyUSB0 57600 crtscts

Be aware this may need restarted. To check the command below to see if it is running.

  ps -ef | grep ppp 

If it is not start the pppd again. This process seems to die everytime there is a "hangup"


Network route maybe needed

You may have to add a route on other machines on your network as the default route won't know about your Amiga PPP link.

sudo ip route add via

If you are only ftping to the Pi that has the pppd service running then this step won't be needed.



I picked up a copy of Roadshow to use for this endeavor. It has been a nice piece of software and pretty easy to use. In the past I have used AmigaTCP 3.0b from Aminet but this is a lot simpler and allows me to support current developers.



Once you have RoadShow archive, version 1.15 as of this writing, extract it and then follow these steps.

While Roadshow is now installed nothing is configured as of yet so lets do go ahead and do that.



We are now going to create a PPP configuration for our serial port so we can talk to our Raspberry Pi.


Add your DNS entries

edit DEVS:Internet/name_resolution to add your DNS entries.

Also update your domain you want to be your default search domain in there.



To connect you must start the ppp daemon on the Raspberry Pi then run the following on the Amiga: ppp_dialer s:ppp-configurations/ppp-serial

You will now have a network connection!

Good reference that helped me figure this out: article

I hope you enjoyed this Amiga adventure with me and I hope to see you in the future for more.