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COM Port/ other port assignment on WinXP

Discussion in 'Hardware' started by Teenytoona, Jun 15, 2004.

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  1. Teenytoona

    Teenytoona Thread Starter

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    Ok, so I'm pretty much a neophyte with XP - we only have one computer with it (what's up with all the cartoony features?). We have one port that's definately named "com port" on the computer - a male 9-pin port (there are others that appear to be named "COM" up through #6 but which exactly those are, I am unsure).

    We've got a port that's labeled as LPT1 and it's a female 25 pin port. We've got the latter (the LPT1) equivalent assigned as com ports on our other computers (which run on 98SE). We are looking to assign the LPT1 as a com port in order to get a specific connectin for some software we are running. Problem is we can't seem to get windows XP to see the LPT1 as a COM. When we've tried it labels it as a COM port with a big ol yellow question mark and it doesn't work (meaning communicate with the device and/or the computer itself).

    So anyone know how to give me more information and/or instructions on how to reassign things (we need it to be com 1-4, probably will need to reassign the other things named coms 2-4). Oh it's a dell inspiron 7000 - notebook computer if that helps and/or changes things. Let me know what other information I need to provide and I will do. I don't know everything (obviously) about computers, but I can find my way around pretty well.
     
  2. ~Candy~

    ~Candy~ Retired Administrator

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    Are you plugging a serial device into the lpt 1 port then? I'm not sure I'm understanding. What type of hardware are you trying to get to work?
     
  3. Teenytoona

    Teenytoona Thread Starter

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    It's HASP key with a specific software button.
     
  4. ckbrown

    ckbrown

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    Tennytoona

    You are looking for a DB25 male serial port. The DB25 MAle to Male adapter that you got to connect the software key to is not going to help.

    Goto radio shack and buy a DB9 to DB25 serial adapter. Connect the adapter to the 9 pin Com port and the key into the 25 pin end.

    Power up and we have launch?

    Let us know.

    Hope this helps

    C.B.
     
  5. ~Candy~

    ~Candy~ Retired Administrator

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  6. Teenytoona

    Teenytoona Thread Starter

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    Maybe I"m not specific enough I"m not sure how to clearly illustrate the problem. Let me try again:

    The port on the computer is female and the key is male, this part is fine. It's how the port is assigned within XP. The port itself is called "LPT1" in the computer, we're trying to get the computer to see (relabel or reassign) it as a COM (like we have it on our other computers). Maybe it's not altogether possible to reassign them as you can in 98SE? I don't know, but that wouldn't exactly make sense seeing as XP is supposed to be an upgrade from 98 and the like.

    Oh and the key is serial.
     
  7. Teenytoona

    Teenytoona Thread Starter

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    Does this by default mean my only option is an adapter? There is no way of reassignment?
     
  8. angel

    angel

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    I think there's still some confusion...
    com port = serial port
    lpt port = parallel port

    They're two completely different animals. I could be wrong but I don't think it's in any way possible to get a serial device to work on a parallel port and vice versa.

    Because you appear to need the 25 pins, that's why ckbrown suggested a 25 to 9 adaptor. (fyi - some older computers did include 25 pin serial ports onboard.)
     
  9. Teenytoona

    Teenytoona Thread Starter

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    Ok, so that's a bit of new information. Thing is, when we attach the HASP key to the LPT port, it fits - (same pin number and all that). Is there some other criterion for determining communication then besides number of pins?
     
  10. angel

    angel

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    Ya, it'll prob "fit" but won't work. They can both be 25 pins (confusing, isn't it?!).
    Though I don't have the serial and parallel port pinouts in front of me, I'm going to assume they are different. Even if they weren't though, the technology (for lack of a better term), or the way the work, is different.
    Check out this link for some information on the differences between serial and parallel ports.
     
  11. Teenytoona

    Teenytoona Thread Starter

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    Cool thank you Angel. My partner seems to think they're both serial (meaning the ones on the networked computers vs the one on the laptop), I've not investigated it though. I really see vary little difference, and I do think that these (the ones on the network) used to be LPT ports and have been changed to COM- (the printer used to be connected through one of the keys).
     
  12. angel

    angel

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    I don't know how an lpt (parallel) port can be "changed" to a com (serial) port. It's entirely possible, however, that the com port is 25 pins.

    The ports should be marked in some way (usually a symbol) or you can look up the mb diagram online.

    Put simply, though. If you have an ltp (parallel) port, you cannot use a serial device on it. And vice versa.

    Now, I'd be very happy for you guys though if someone could prove me wrong.
     
  13. Teenytoona

    Teenytoona Thread Starter

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    Ok, apparently they are both serial. So the issue remains - is there a way to reassign the port (formerly known as LPT1) to the name of COM2?
     
  14. angel

    angel

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    Well, now you're confusing me. A serial port will not show up in Windows as LTP1.
    If it is a serial port, it will show up as a COM port in Windows.
    The Inspiron 7000 has both a parallel and serial port so it's normal to see lpt1 listed in Device Manager. If you don't see a com port listed in Device Manager, check your BIOS to be sure the port is enabled.
     
  15. Teenytoona

    Teenytoona Thread Starter

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    Hmmm, ok, I'm still convinced then that I"m not wording something right. Let me try and be as basic (terminology free) as possible and hopefully that will help maybe I"m not calling the right thigns the right names. It would be so much easier to point to my computer and say "that" heh. :p

    The computers on which the HASP key works: the key is plugged into, and running from the port that used to be the printer port (it has the little printer icon right by it). Now we figured on the laptop we could get the same thing to happen - since we did it for the other computers. Thing is, the program we're running is DOS and it has to see the port that the key is in as a COM1, COM2, COM3 or COM4. And we've been able to do so in win 98SE but not on the lap top that has Win XP.

    My off hand quirky thought is that maybe they're both parallel, but then that wouldn't explain why the original computers do see the actual port as named "COM1" (or 2, 3, etc).So the puzzle continues.
     
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