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There is a PC program which reads ASCII data from serial port in real time and processes it. The thing is I'm not able to change the code. The program reads the incoming data where one can only set which sections to be logged.

Now there is a sensor device which outputs data via RS485 which I can convert to RS232 and to USB as well. The thing is this device will send data only if it receives request data.

My problem is the PC program is not able to send data but only receives. I need something to trigger(send request to the device) continuously and then send the received data to the PC's port to be read by the program.

Would a micro-controller work in that case as below?:

schematic

simulate this circuit – Schematic created using CircuitLab

What other tricks might work in this case?

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Sure, you can do that. The microcontroller would both generate the triggers and convert the RS-485 protocol into the serial protocol expected by the PC COM port. You can even get some MCUs that have the USB interface built in, eliminating the need for an external USB COM port device.

This is the sort of thing that Arduino is good for.

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