Multidrop ethernet bus, basic question.

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Paul of Alexandria

Joined Jan 28, 2015
9
I've been using ethernet forever, of course, but am now in a position of having to actually design something. Originally, ethernet used a single coax cable with "vampire" taps to connect nodes. Almost all ethernet networks these days use point-to-point communications via a router and the ubiquitous CAT-5 / RJ-45 cable, none of the networks are actually multi-drop.

Can you use a PHY layer transceiver, e.g.the TI DP83849IF (http://www.ti.com/product/DP83849IF/technicaldocuments) with multiple drops on a twisted pair, or are they only for point-point use? I can't find anything in the documentation either way. Is there a convenient way to set up an actual multi-drop line, or must there be a router involved? (Or, must every node have two ports and relay the packets?)
 
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