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BuildOrBuy Group Network
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BuildOrBuy News

images/bullet2.gifUSB News:

images/bullet2.gifwww.microsoft.com - USB Technology:
USB, Universal Serial Bus:

An external bus supporting Plug and Play installation. USB 1.1 vs. 2.0 - USB = External Connectivity Simplicity. Originally planned as a low speed peripheral device bus, USB 2 will now compete with 1394 FireWire for PC & Consumer Electronics Device Connectivity. A quick comparison of Transfer Rates may help to explain this issue or see USB.org - FAQ.

According to www.formfactors.org, Front Panel I/O: "The USB 2.0 connector is the same as USB 1.1 connector. The USB 2.0 specification defines a new high-speed transfer rate of 480 Mb/sec., a 40x increase from the 1.1 specification."

Transfer Rate Specs
USB 1.1 = A maximum bandwidth of 12 Mbits / sec (equivalent to 1.5 Mbytes / sec), and up to 127 devices can be attached.

USB Info!

USB 2 = A dramatic throughput increase to 480 Mbits/sec, challenging FireWire (IEEE 1394) as the external serial interface of the future.
O/S: Fully Supported by Win98. O/S: Win2000 & WinXP flavors.
 

To utilize USB 1.1, PCs have to meet the requirements of Win98 or above.

Identifying USB versions - Windows Device Manager and USB - UHC (1.1) Universal Host Controller vs. EHC (2.0) Enhanced Host Controller. Otherwise, plug a USB 2.0 Device into the USB Port and WinXP Pro will identify connected Device & Port capabilities.

And to capitalize on the speed of USB 2, we'll have to have the following according to Microsoft: Win2000 or flavors of WinXP.

The crucial aspect of previous USB Device implementation & utilization, "Microsoft requires the host silicon expose a self-powered USB 2.0 hub (with a Transaction Translator) hanging downstream of every port of the USB 2.0 controller." This should solve some of our USB 1.1 connectivity problems as well. Chalk it up to Early Technology Exposure if you feel burned lately when your USB Ports & Devices gave the graceful BSOD! Enjoy! GB

How to tell USB Differences from Windows Device Manager - USB versions 1.1 & 2.0: UHC (Universal Host Controller) vs. EHC (Enhanced Host Controller) respectively.

  1. Phoenix Technologies - See: White papers & Documents, Bios Boot Spec & USB Specifications
  2. 310575 - General USB Troubleshooting in Windows XP
    Mismatched Cabling
    "There are two types of USB cables, high speed and low speed. Low-speed cables differ from high-speed cables primarily in their shielding. If you plug a high-speed device into a low-speed cable, you can cause signal distortion over long distances.

    Verify the entire USB chain is working correctly to be certain that a device that requires the ability to draw power from the hub is not plugged into the chain on the other side of a non-powered hub. This causes that hub and all of the devices down the chain to be suspended. If the hub is a powered hub, verify that the power supply for that hub is configured properly."

     

    Out-of-Date Firmware or BIOS
    "The key to all USB devices is the firmware. The USB device's firmware contains all of the information about the device. A port is not reset until all of the descriptors in the firmware have been loaded and verified by the root hub. This is critical because it applies to items such as printers and modems. Make certain that you have the most up-to-date firmware that is available for both your computer's BIOS and each individual device.

    The symptoms of malfunctioning or incorrectly configured firmware might be unusual. Typically, when you remove and then re-add a USB device, the device simply becomes available again. However, the device may be displayed as a second instance of that device, and load itself as such in Device Manager. If you see duplicates of a device, verify that you have the most up-to-date firmware for that device. This issue is common with USB printers and modems. A similar issue that has the same cause occurs when a device loads a device driver, and then adds a second device for which there seems to be no driver. The second device is displayed with an exclamation point in a yellow circle in Device Manager. The device may work correctly, but you cannot remove the "ghost" device until you unplug the parent device that seems to have generated the ghost device. Also, you may be able to resolve this issue by updating the firmware or the device driver for that device."
    IPL (Initial Program Load) USB Boot Devices:
  3. Platform Compatibility for USB Boot Devices: Updated link (10/22/2003).
  4. Recommendations for Booting Windows from USB Storage Devices: (10/22/2003).
  5. Inside Out Networks AnywhereUSB: Currently USB 1.1 over IP Remote I/O Concentrator.
  6. www.intel.com - Universal Serial Bus:
  7. www.intel.com - Universal Serial Bus - EHCI Specification:
USB, Universal Serial Bus - News:
  1. images/bullet2.gifwww.ExtremeTech.com - Linksys, Maxtor Team Up For NAS Device: Connecting Storage to the Network ... Linksys $99 NSL (Network Storage Link) claims to work with any USB enabled HD (6/15/2004).
    1. www.Linksys.com - Network Storage Link: Share you External Hard Drive on the LAN!
    2. Maxtor & Linksys Establish Strategic Alliance Promoting Easy Home Network Storage: (6/15/2004).
    3. Linksys NSLU2 - Network Storage Link for USB 2.0 Disk Drives:
  2. Keyspan introduces USB Server - "Easily connect USB devices to a PC via a wired or wireless Ethernet-based LAN. The USB Server enables attached USB devices to be used and shared by client PCs on a LAN. In addition to printers, the USB Server supports other USB devices such as hard drives, scanners and more." USB Server ships in late Q1 2004, MSRP $129. Showcased @ 2004 International CES this week! (1/7/2004)

  3. support.microsoft.com - 822603 - Availability of the Windows XP SP1 USB 1.1 and 2.0 Update: "The Windows XP USB User Interface does not support more than 10 Host Controllers." (9/15/2003)

  4. www.theinquirer.net - Yes, there are USB drivers for DOS... (6/28/2003).

  5. COMPUTEX ONLINE: Welland Industrial introduces USB 6-in-1 Memory Reader/Writer (2/3/2003).

    1. www.welland.com.tw See: Super Panel!

  6. ExtremeTech.com - Build It External USB 2.0 Hard Drive (1/16/2003).
  7. images/bullet2.gifNews: Keyspan Expands USB 2.0 Connections (12/2/2002).
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Web Development, Gill Boyd & Team - Posted 12/07/2002; Updated 03/12/2009