SharkTapUSB Gen2 features


"First do no harm"

  • It is physically impossible for the SharkTapUSB to inject data onto the monitored network. The SharkTapUSB will never drop packets. You can be confident your diagnostics are not affecting the network.

The new SharkTapUSB uses 'carbon copy' repeater technology

  • Directly supports 10Base-T, 100Base-T, and 1000Base-T links

  • Protocol independent

  • 'read only' (no way to send data from TAP port to Network ports)

  • Small and constant delay (about 500nS)

  • Full 2Gbit full-duplex bandwidth

  • Even replicates errors (it can't replicate the exact analog fault, but the fact of a data error is replicated)


Aggregate TAP ports - a standard wired ethernet port, or a virtual USB ethernet port

  • Copies of all packets are duplicated on the TAP port. Both transmit and received packets are duplicated on the single TAP port.

  • Jumbo packets up to 9KB supported.

  • Packets with bad Frame check sequence, and packets with a data error, are duplicated. (Not supported on USB port under linux)

  • Works with non-standard, non-TCP/IP data.

  • Large buffer (256KB) to absorb bursts of full-duplex traffic. If sustained traffic exceeds 1Gb total, TAP port copies of packets can be dropped, but the Network ports will never drop packets.


Virtual USB ethernet TAP port included

  • A "Realtek USB GbE Family Controller" will appear as a device on your PC. Configure it just like a built-in network card.

  • Perfect for thin laptops or tablets with no wired ethernet jack

  • You can optimize the virtual ethernet port for Wireshark or equivalent, leaving other ethernet ports configured for networking.

Backup power configuration

  • The SharkTap can be powered from the black USB jack, with the virtual USB connection made only when the engineer is actively monitoring.

  • Or, the two jacks can be viewed as main + auxiliary power configuration, for added reliability.

The SharkTapUSB can double as a dongle for connecting to a wired network. This mode is enabled by disconnecting both Network ports, and connecting both USB and wired TAP ports. The USB port is then cut through to the wired TAP port.

SharkTapUSB Specifications

  • Directly supports 10Base-T, 100Base-T, 1000Base-T links

  • Dimensions (including tabs): 2.9"W x 5.1"L x 1.1"H Weight: 5 oz

  • Passes Power-over-Ethernet (PoE), 350mA per pair (at 57V)

  • Temperature range: 0 to 65 Celcius. Nominal tested range - not formally guaranteed (the case melts before the circuitry quits!)

  • Power: Nominally 500mA@5V (2.5W), which is USB2 levels. However, most ports don't provide a true 5V, so we recommend a USB3 port if possible

  • Warranty: 30 day return, 1 year defects in parts and workmanship. Suitability is not guaranteed

SharkTapUSB materials

Frequently Asked Questions

Does the SharkTap respond to flow control packets?

  • No, the SharkTap doesn't respond to any packets, it only passes them through. Flow control, or VLAN packets, or any other special purpose packets that might be intercepted by a smart switch, are simply passed through and mirrored to the tap port.

Will the SharkTap "fail open"?

  • Yes - if the SharkTap loses power, the Network link will stop working

Does the SharkTap support Power over Ethernet?

  • Yes, it does. The center tap of of the isolation transformers for each pair are connected to the corresponding center tap of the other NETWORK port. So the high speed data is blocked, but DC power is passed through. This is done for all four pairs, so all standard PoE techniques are supported. There are no settings, it just works.

Will the SharkTap show packets with bad FCS?

  • Yes, it will. As of now, the standard linux driver will not pass bad packets over USB. They will be passed on Windows USB, and always passed on the wired-TAP port. Note that under linux, you may have to set your NIC up to receive bad FCS (using ethtool, typically)