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I was wondering if it's possible to use the 10.2 Gb/s HDMI port on several computers as a backbone networking interface for a home made cluster?

Is there some kind of HDMI switch? Can HDMI transport arbitrary data? Can you access the HDMI port in *nix as a device like eth0 and pipe to it? Can the HDMI port on the computers receieve data, or is it outgoing only (graphics card -> display)?

This would be very cool.

If it doesn't exist, what would be the logistics of implementing this?

Edit) Reddit discussion, http://redd.it/1lnzyi

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HDMI 1.4 supports Ethernet over the cable. Other than this, don't try it. –  Ignacio Vazquez-Abrams Sep 3 '13 at 21:49
    
Could the data be converted to a visual representation and ported over the audio/video channel at 1080p 30fps? –  blakev Sep 3 '13 at 21:54
    
Implementation suggestion from stack overflow: stackoverflow.com/a/21791324/2714534 –  blakev Feb 16 at 3:49

1 Answer 1

HDMI has multiple channels carrying various kinds of data (video, audo, control, etc)

As Ignacio commented - HDMI 1.4 does have Ethernet (HEC) on pins 14 & 19 - you could use this.

HDMI 1.4 does have reverse audio channels (ARC) so that (for example) a TV can return a sound signal to an external audio amplifier. I suspect throughput may be relatively low.

It does have a CEC channel for bidirectional command communication but this is relatively low speed.

I believe the video portion of the TMDS channels is not bidirectional and so cannot be used to receive data.

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