1. Computer problem? Tech Support Guy is completely free -- paid for by advertisers and donations. Click here to join today! If you're new to Tech Support Guy, we highly recommend that you visit our Guide for New Members.

Solved: How Do I Know If I Am Using Too Many USB Ports?

Discussion in 'Windows 7' started by sistafatti, Jan 29, 2011.

Thread Status:
Not open for further replies.
Advertisement
  1. sistafatti

    sistafatti Thread Starter

    Joined:
    Feb 18, 2004
    Messages:
    283
    My new Gateway computer contains 10 USB 2.0 ports I was excited thinking I had sufficient ports because so many computers come with just 4 USB Ports. I use a 2Wire receiver communicating to an Actiontec wireless modem attached to my wife's computer (WXP) to access the Internet and recently after installing a web came and Skype, I lose my wireless connnection on occassion and have to unplug and then plug the wireless receiver into a USB port.

    I contacted my ISP's tech support and received the following as part of his reply:

    USB allows hundreds of devices to connect to one computer, however, the computer does not provide enough electricity to power very many devices. If it runs out of power it will still detect the usb device but it won't allow it to work. If you are using several devices connected through usb (such as a keyboard, mouse, wireless adapter, camera, external hard drive, external cd-rom drive, etc.) this may be drawing too much power for your computer to supply. If this is the case a simple, inexpensive powered usb hub may resolve the issue. Any hub that has its own AC power adapter will work fine.

    The following is some basic info on my computer? I just do basic computer functions, ie; Word Processing, spread sheets, financial software, photo editing software, Print Shop etc. No gaming or streaming of movies, videos etc.


    Manufacturer: Gateway
    Model: DX4320
    Rating: 4.4 (Windows Experience Index)
    Processor: AMD Phenom II X4 820 processor 2.80 Ghz
    Installed Memory (RAM) 6. GB (5.73 Useable)
    System Type: 64 bit operating system (Windows 7 Home Premium
    Hard Drive: 525 GB free of 577

    How do I know if I am using too many USB Ports and should purchase a self powered USB Hub?
     
  2. fel1x

    fel1x

    Joined:
    Jan 23, 2011
    Messages:
    562
    psu size??? no one ever seams to know that one !!

    mostly 4 to 6 are connected as an average , a powered usb hub ( i have one which is a card reader as well cost £5.00 is well brill)

    if you are using to many you will soon know about it as it will crash or not work at all
     
  3. Unktone

    Unktone

    Joined:
    Jan 18, 2011
    Messages:
    12
    You can daisy chain up to 114-117 devices on one USB port. Number of peripherals is most likely not the problem.

    Although you didn't give a specific part number, the DX4320 series has many models, the one available with 8GB of memory only has a 300watt power supply. If you wanted to be completely accurate, you can look at everything that your power supply is connected to, adding up the amount of power that is being used, and compare it to the max ratings that are listen on your power supply.

    If the power is sufficient for your use, updating your motherboard drivers might do something.
     
  4. TerryNet

    TerryNet Moderator

    Joined:
    Mar 23, 2005
    Messages:
    78,267
    First Name:
    Terry
    Details are important. The wireless adapter loses power? It does not lose power, but you can no longer detect any wireless signals? You can detect wireless signals but have lost the IP configuration and cannot reconnect? Something else?
     
  5. sistafatti

    sistafatti Thread Starter

    Joined:
    Feb 18, 2004
    Messages:
    283
    I don't lose power to the wireless adaptor, When a web page won't load I check the wireless icon in the system tray, it only has a couple of bars highlighted and it indicates "limited access". I unplug it from the USB port and then plug it back in and then I have a full connection again. The wireless icon (which looks like the icon on a cell phone) then has all of the bars highlighted.
     
  6. TerryNet

    TerryNet Moderator

    Joined:
    Mar 23, 2005
    Messages:
    78,267
    First Name:
    Terry
    Install, or re-install, the latest wireless driver from the adapter manufacturer's web site.

    If that doesn't cure the problem maybe the adapter is slowly failing or maybe there is a power problem. The maximum current drain from a USB port is 500 mA (milli-amps). USB wireless adapters (at least the ones for which I've found current information) draw 500 mA. That leaves little room for error if the port is slightly underpowered or the adapter draws a little more than the specs call for. The first USB wireless adapter I had would continually be shut off and then powered back up on some computers but worked OK on others. Clearly yours isn't having that much difficulty, but it could be a similar issue.
     
  7. FijiJohn

    FijiJohn

    Joined:
    Apr 2, 2006
    Messages:
    244
    Your ISP is referring to the amount of power available from the USB port. The spec says, "A maximum of 5 unit loads (500 mA) can be drawn from a port in USB 2.0." The critical factor is not your PSU so much as the power to the USB port. The max USB port output is thus 2.5 watts (5V x 0.5 amps). It is rather easy to put enough things on a port to draw more than that. EACH port should support 500mA but daisy-chaining devices means they all have to share that 500mA.
     
  8. sistafatti

    sistafatti Thread Starter

    Joined:
    Feb 18, 2004
    Messages:
    283
    Thanks much everyone...........a wealth of information and I learned something new. One reason why this is such a great site with knowledgable members.
     
  9. Sponsor

As Seen On
As Seen On...

Welcome to Tech Support Guy!

Are you looking for the solution to your computer problem? Join our site today to ask your question. This site is completely free -- paid for by advertisers and donations.

If you're not already familiar with forums, watch our Welcome Guide to get started.

Join over 733,556 other people just like you!

Loading...
Thread Status:
Not open for further replies.

Short URL to this thread: https://techguy.org/977700

  1. This site uses cookies to help personalise content, tailor your experience and to keep you logged in if you register.
    By continuing to use this site, you are consenting to our use of cookies.
    Dismiss Notice