Can I connect a PSP to wired Ethernet?
August 31, 2007 1:46 AM   Subscribe

Can I connect a PSP to wired Ethernet?

Young Flabdablet has the use of a friend's PlayStation Portable. I don't want him using the Internet behind closed doors, so I'm not going to give him the WPA key for my wireless router. Is there (a) software available that we can install on a PC, allowing him to get a LAN connection via the PSP's USB2 connector (b) a USB2-to-Ethernet dongle that will work with the PSP?
posted by flabdablet to Computers & Internet (12 answers total) 1 user marked this as a favorite
Perhaps you could use a second access point which you could unplug at will.
posted by alexei at 2:17 AM on August 31, 2007

Or-- better yet, disconnect/modify the antenna to reduce the range to 2 meters, and put it where you want him to be.
posted by alexei at 2:18 AM on August 31, 2007

You can buy a device that provides wireless access to a wired network. I have a Belkin one. You could then attach this to your wired LAN or to a secondary NIC.
posted by wackybrit at 2:33 AM on August 31, 2007

Most wireless routers have a MAC filter. If your model has one, just block the PSP's MAC address.
posted by uncle harold at 3:30 AM on August 31, 2007

Alternative answer: If possible, switch your wireless network to WPA2. The PSP can only do WPA and WEP ecryption (AFAIK, at least I didn't have success with mine).
posted by uncle harold at 3:32 AM on August 31, 2007

Just to clear this up: I have a wireless router already, it's already connecting computers further away than Young Flabdablet's bedroom, and it's doing WPA because my laptop's running a crappy D-Link wireless card driver that doesn't support WPA2.

I would rather put a physical limit on where he is able to connect the PSP to the network (the room with wired Ethernet outlets) than adopt a wireless solution needing active administration, but if there's nothing readily available that lets me do this, I may just give up and do the MAC filtering thing instead.
posted by flabdablet at 5:06 AM on August 31, 2007

I think the easiest solution to this problem is to only allow him to use it in the space you want...just something along the lines of "don't take the PSP out of this room".
posted by DMan at 8:28 AM on August 31, 2007

What is your wireless router? My Linksys, with the widely-used custom firmware, will allow me to set rules stating when certain clients are allowed to use the network. You could do this and grant the PSP access only during certain hours.
posted by mikeh at 9:04 AM on August 31, 2007

Instead of using a key, we have no password, but have our router set up only to allow devices whose MAC addresses are registered. You could configure your router to do this and allow all your computers on, but not your kid's computers except for the PSP.

nb: He can surf the internets on the PSP, so look out there. I think there are parental controls you can use for the PSP.
posted by By The Grace of God at 9:05 AM on August 31, 2007

I know he can surf the Internet on the PSP. That's precisely why I only want him able to do that in a public area in the house. I have no wish to make the Internet frustrating and useless to him with a crapflood of false positives from some idiot content filter, so I won't be installing "parental controls". It seems to me that the only parental control that ever actually works properly is random parental eyeballs. I'm perfectly happy with the results of that policy so far.

If the only way he can connect to the Internet is with a bit of wire, then I don't have any admin task to do beyond what I'm already doing for his PC (which is in the computer room, not in his bedroom): occasionally look at what's on his screen. If I hand him the WPA passphrase and enable wireless access, and use router settings of whatever kind to control access to that, then I have to Do Something every time he wants to log on, and remember to Do Something Else every time he takes the PSP away for non-network play.

Which is why I wanted to find out whether it's possible to set up a PSP network connection that's physically tethered to the PSP with good old-fashioned wire.

So far I'm getting the impression that it isn't.

My router is a Billion 7402VGP, and it has MAC blacklisting and whitelisting, as well as packet filter that can apply time schedules to selected source IP addresses, and a DHCP server that can fix an IP address to a given MAC; I could fiddle and fartarse about with that and get my false sense of security that way. But the wired connection is so much simpler and more foolproof.
posted by flabdablet at 7:00 PM on August 31, 2007

flab: your monitoring style is extremely laudatory.

How about getting a long lanyard and connecting the psp to the desk or something in the computer room? Even if you didn't have the monitoring reason, the fact that it's NOT HIS PSP is a good reason to have it lanyarded, for safety.
posted by By The Grace of God at 4:20 AM on September 1, 2007

By gum, you might have something there. I won't go the lanyard, because I don't want to make the computer room the only place he can use the PSP, just the only place he can browse the web at home. But you've helped me see that it's not necessarily a network cable I need; anything that guarantees the PSP is present in the computer room would do.

So I'll hang a longish USB cable off my headless Linux box, and put a script on that box that tells the router to whitelist the PSP's MAC when it's plugged in, and unlist it when it's disconnected.

If he can work out how to do MAC spoofing on a PSP, he doesn't need me protecting him from the Internet :-)
posted by flabdablet at 8:43 AM on September 1, 2007

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