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Frontline Test Equipment - Serial RS232/422/485 Tester

Full detail sof the SerialTest products can be found on the Frontline site by clicking here >>>

The Frontline SerialTest products include the following:

  • STA-232 - for RS232 only sniffing using USB to Serial ComProbe II

  • STA-422/485 - for RS422/485 with different probe

  • STA-232/422/485 - for combined all three with both probes

an overview is in the tabs below...

  • Overview
  • Features


RS232 ComProbe II

Once you’ve used Serialtest, you will never want to work on another serial communication problem without it. Serialtest will help you quickly and easily find and fix even the most obscure problems and save countless hours of troubleshooting time. It is portable and easy-to-use with power and flexibility. No matter what the industry, Serialtest is an indispensable troubleshooting tool.

Serialtest Async is a PC-based analyzer for passively monitoring or actively testing serial asynchronous (async) communication circuits and networked equipment, at speeds up to 921.6 Kbps. The product offers an economical solution for debugging, testing, and troubleshooting equipment, circuits and software applications on serial data communication networks. Typical test application areas include utility meter reading, railroad signal and switch monitoring, PC-based control, lottery and gaming, credit authorization, and the Internet.

RS-422/485 ComProbe

Troubleshoot Serial Data Communications Live

  • High-speed, real-time data analysis.
  • Works with RS-232 ComProbe II and RS-422/485 ComProbe (both plug into USB ports).
  • Built-in decoders for Modbus RTU & ASCII, Async PPP, SLIP and TCP/IP.
  • Capture & View data, control signals and error conditions live in real-time.
  • Display Filters and Detailed decodes for rapid and easy analysis.
  • Errors are highlighted to quickly spot problems.
Trusted Worldwide by:
  • Field Engineers.
  • Software & Hardware Product Developers.
  • Network Integrators.
  • Network Administrators.
  • Network Troubleshooters.

The enhanced Serialtest protocol analyzer software enables shorter and less costly development intervals for data communication equipment and applications, faster and more efficient network installations, and improved mean-time-to-repair following equipment and network outages.

Serialtest with FTS Frame Display
Time-tested Frame Display Drills Down 
to Show Errors in Finest Detail

The Serialtest Async product includes the analyzer software, our DecoderScript decoder writing language, comprehensive product documentation and 1 year of Premium Maintenance on the software. Premium Maintenance entitles you to free software upgrades and complete tech support with a personal touch during the maintenance period. The RS-232 ComProbe II option also ships with a six-foot USB Cable, a RS-232 Y-Cable, six-foot RS-232 Extension Cable, two 25-Pin to 9-Pin Adapters and a Cable Bag to keep everything in. The Cable Bag is also shipped with the RS-422/485 ComProbe.

Write Custom Decodes Using the DecoderScript Language

Build your own custom decodes for proprietary protocols and extensions to existing protocol decoders using DecoderScript, Frontline's intuitive, high-level scripting language. Our DecoderScript Manual is a comprehensive guide to using the DecoderScript language and includes many examples of writing custom decoders.




Protocol Decoders Included

  • Modbus RTU, Modbus ASCII, PPP, SLIP, and TCP/IP carried over PPP and/or SLIP.


  • Easy-to-use scripting language to write custom decodes for proprietary protocols and/or extensions to existing protocol decoders.
  • If you don't have the resources to write a decoder yourself, contact Frontline to get an estimate for their decoder staff to write the decoder for you.

Data Capture Options

  • Requires 'RS-232 ComProbe II' or 'RS-422/485 ComProbe'.
  • Supports data rates up to 921.6 Kbps including non-standard baud rates.
  • Spy mode is supported only for PCs with built-in serial port that use Microsofts's serial driver (SERIAL.SYS or SERIAL.VXD).
  • Captured data includes data bytes, control signals, and error conditions.
  • Capture data to a single file or a series of files.

Display Windows

  • Data can be analyzed in real-time using the Event Display Display Event, Frame Display Frame Display, Protocol Navigator Protocol Navigator, Signal Display Signal Display, Breakout Box Display Event and Statistics Window Statistics.
  • Multiple synchronized windows can be viewed simultaneously.
  • Real-time breakout box includes timing diagrams and counters for control signals.
  • Timing diagrams enable captured control signal transitions to be viewed with respect to captured data bytes.

Data Display Characteristics

  • Frame/Packet contents are decoded to the byte and bit level.
  • Characters can be displayed in ASCII, EBCDIC, or Baudot.
  • Nonprintable characters are displayed using hex and mnemonics.
  • Supported radices include hex, octal, decimal and binary.
  • Decoded data formats supported include 16 bit Integers, 32 bit Integers, IEEE 32 bit Floating Point, 32 bit Reverse Floating Point, and ASCII.

Display Filters

  • Display filter parameters include filter-in or filter-out protocols, messages, data patterns, and advanced mode for complex filters.
  • Quick filters for the Frame Display and Protocol Navigator windows include protocol filtering in and out, filtering on the summary pane, and filtering on messages.
  • Tab filters in the Frame Display allow you to filter in frames that contain a specific protocol layer.


  • Search at the byte or frame level.
  • Find data by timestamps.
  • Locate errors.
  • Discover specific data patterns (patterns include wildcard characters at the bit level, nibble level, and byte level).
  • Search decoded text, with or without wildcards.

Data Export

  • Export Events or Frames into text or binary format.
  • Exports the contents of the Frame Display's Summary Pane into CSV format.
  • Export output is suitable for importing into a spreadsheet, database or other post-process program for intricate data and protocol analysis.
  • Print the Summary Pane and/or Decode Pane information.

Network Statistics

  • Shows amount of data on the network (number of characters/bytes/events/frames/messages).
  • Displays error information.
  • Provides information on data rates (characters per second, frames per second).
  • Provides network utilization information.
  • For serial networks, it provides statistics for both the DTE/Master/Host and DCE/Slave/RTU ends.
  • Provides current, peak and average values for all network statistics metrics.

Data Transmission

  • Includes special Transmit program to send data over Serial ports.
  • Transmit is supported only for PCs with built-in serial port that use Microsofts's serial driver (SERIAL.SYS or SERIAL.VXD).
  • Data strings and files can be transmitted one time, multiple times, or continuously.
  • Data transmission delays can be inserted in millisecond, second, or minute increments.
  • Control signals can be set on or off.


  • Provides both absolute and relative displays of event timing for bytes and frames/messages.
  • Calculates time intervals between bytes and between frames/messages (delta time).
  • Timestamp resolution is 100 nanoseconds.

Collaboration Features

  • Add notes to your capture files describing the contents of the data. Use the notes for archiving network information, or to resolve problems and sharing information between people.
  • Add bookmarks to highlight important bytes and frames for easy access. Use these bookmarks to share information and capture files between team members.
  • I/O configurations, protocol stacks, and filters can be saved for future use.

Help & Documentation

  • Comprehensive product help provides operating instructions.
  • Quick Start Guide enables rapid product set-up and operation.
  • Documentation is installed with the product and is also available online.