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Author: Juan Herrerķas Rey

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The USB: one for all...


... And all for one, paraphrasing Dumas. USB means neither more nor less than Universal Serial Bus, bus universal series; we go, that serves to connect any peripheral one to the computer. It is clear that in fact it is not a question of any peripheral one, but rather of the peripheral typical day pupils: mouse, keyboard, joystick, printer, modem...

Example of connections by means of USB

So although it is not completely universal, it turns out to be quite comfortable. One of his peculiarities consists of the fact that up to 126 devices (apart from the proper computer) are connected or of line one behind other (for example, the PC to the printer, the modem to the printer, the mouse to the modem...) or to a few devices with diverse exits of connector that can be in any of the peripheral ones of the chain, of the PC or in other devices like the monitor.

With the bus USB we will approach more the authentic reality of P&P (Plug and Play, to plug in a device and listed), and even some devices will be able to settle without need to begin the system again. Clear it is that this will depend on that the devices and the operating system cooperate appropriately, which is still to see; P&P it has already enough years and it still gives multiple problems...

The motive of which we could not connect devices as a hard disk or a CD - ROM to the bus USB owes to his band: 12 Mbits/s, or what is the same: 1,5 MBytes/s Esto is sufficient for a printer, which like much 1 MB/s transmits, or for a modem (less than 0,01 MB/s), and let's not say for a mouse or a joystick. But a hard disk transmits several gentle per second, which makes it completely inadequate for the bus USB.

Also, the band must be distributed between the devices, what it does not import very much if we are connecting another mouse, but that it indicates us that to connect 126 printers to the same port USB and to try to print in all simultaneously is not a good idea. Nevertheless, it looks like a sufficient breadth to use some portable devices as the units Zip, while we them do not try to use simultaneously that a printer, a modem and a scanner USB (combination certainly improbable).

One of the typical places where we will find connectors USB will be the monitor, what it does not imply that this is a device USB. For the transmission of the image there are needed tens (and hundreds) of MB/s, what is at light years of the capacity of the USB; nevertheless, the monitor turns out to be a place strategically suitably to place these connectors, liberating the computer of some cables. For it some manufacturers of monitors like Phillips include in his most modern, advanced and expensive models a box with these connectors (what is named a connections distributor or hub).

Well, if he is already sure of the utility of the bus USB: how to obtain it? Although the basic badges have in his chipsets support for USB for a pair years, it has not even been does very little that the external connectors have included to be able to make use of it. If his badge has a chipset HX, VX, TX, LX, BX, or a Route Apollo or similar, but it does not see in the exterior of his computer the small connector of rectangular form of the bus USB, he will need to buy it and to install it. The best thing is that it goes to the manual of his motherboard and looks what the jumpers are to plug in the above mentioned connector, which will be able to find in some electronics shops; later it is possible that it is necessary that he enables it in the BIOS or by means of other jumpers. If this option has not been included in the motherboard (in cheap or ancient badges), bad luck: it will have support USB but it will not be able to use it.

Connectors USB in a motherboard

In the badges that sell at present, especially if they are in format ATX, the connector of the bus USB is present like a standard, sometimes even for copy. Since it is appreciated in the image, it is a small rectangle, of the approximate size of a telephone pin (but different from these).

Finally, we are going to evaluate the future of this technology. The absence of support for her in Windows 95 has done that it has happened unnoticed last years, but the arrival of Windows 98, which yes supports it, one is supposed that it is going to revitalize it to a great extent; we will see appearing all kinds of devices USB that will try to flood the market making use of the innovation. Finally, it seems that for the mice and the others the future happens inevitably for the USB.

Nevertheless, do not cover to buy a new badge with USB not anything for the style. The devices USB will cost perceptibly more than the equivalents with classic connectors; also, enough years will happen until the bus USB is used exclusive. It is necessary to bear in mind that the ports series and parallel are one of the standards on which there have been based almost 20 years of the life of the PCs, and cannot be eliminated of a pen stroke; nobody is going to obviate the fact that 100 % of the PCs has these ports, or that 99,99 % of the personal printers uses the parallel port to get connected with the PC. So if it has no USB, calm; I do not have it either and the most minimal thing does not worry me.


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