Question about Palm Vx Handheld

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Connecting serial with USB

I have an old Palm VX with serial output. My laptop has USB inputs only. I bought an adapter but the computer still doesn?t recognize the palm and I can synchronize.

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I think it?s a common problem. You?re welcome to try the next options, in hopes of one of them working out: 1. Make sure there is no problem in the settings and that in both computers the connection is set to USB. 2. There may be a clash between this connection and another component that is connected to the Palm. Try uninstalling everything, hard resetting and running Hotsync or Activesync, and reconnecting the units. 3. There might be a problem in the drivers, try reinstalling them. 4. If you are using PM 3.16, there might be a clash.

Posted on Feb 22, 2006


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Have two computers to connect to a printer. One computer uses a serial the other a parallel port. The printer has only one usb port. Is there a dual cable or adapter available to make the transition?

You won't find a cable or adapter that will allow both computers to connect simultaneously to the printer. This is because the printers would interfere with each other's signals. That said, adapters are available, but not cheap. Again, the problem is the language that each type of connector uses is different. On top of that, chances are that the printer software would not allow you to select a serial port output on the printer knowing it does not support serial port interface. Same issue with the parallel port. You apparently are using very old computers if all you have is serial or parallel port outputs. You may be able to get a USB card to install in the computer(s) to provide you with a USB interface. This would be cheaper than attempting to get a pair of adapter cables and more likely to work better as well. Often the adapter cables don't work right and will cause slow printing. Also, you CAN get a switching box that can connect two USB computer ports to a single printer.

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Options for Adding Serial Ports The serial port is prevalent on PC's ...

Options for Adding Serial Ports
The serial port is prevalent on PC's as well as scores of industrial, scientific and consumer devices, making it a convenient starting point for communications. Since RS-232 itself is only suited to short connections (50 ft. max.) many applications require that it be adapted to fit requirements. RS-422, typically used for extending RS-232 communications, provides full duplex communications between two devices. It can also provide one way communications from one master to several slaves. RS-485 communications standard allows cable lengths up to 4000 feet. It also provides very high noise immunity. Multidrop connections up to 32 different nodes can be made over a single twisted pair cable along with a signal ground connection.
This article summarizes the choices a system designer has when adding a serial (RS-232, RS-422, or RS-485) communications device. There are many different ways to add additional serial ports to your Desktop PC, Palm, or Laptop PC. USB, PCMCIA, PCI and ISA are some of the methods that will be discussed.
The Universal Serial Bus (USB) provides a high data rate and Hot Swap connection for PCs, providing an easy connection to a wide variety of multimedia and network USB devices. Generally considered to be for home or office use, USB is finding its way into Industrial applications.
PCMCIA Serial Ports are yet another way to add serial ports to a PC that has PCMCIA Slots available. Most Laptops today offer only one (if any at all) DB9 type serial ports. A PCMCIA Serial Card is a good way to add a serial port (or ports) to any laptop that is low on available serial ports (RS-232, RS-422 or RS-485).
PCI Cards are becoming more popular as a way to add serial ports to desktop PC's. PCI type slots are becoming the "norm" in standard PC's today, and PCI Serial Cards are an excellent way to add serial ports. The standard Desktop PC may only come with one serial port standard (if any serial ports at all). PCI Serial Cards use Software Drivers to address the ports to the PC.
ISA Cards are yet another way to add serial ports to the older desktop PC's. ISA type slots are becoming scarce in standard PC's today, but are still an excellent way to add serial ports. The ISA Cards are typically addressed using dip switches and shunts or jumpers to set IRQ's for each port. No Software Drivers are required with ISA style serial cards.
Palm OS PDA's may be connected to RS-422 or RS-485 data circuits using Palm adapters. These adapters offer total portability for collecting data and field service chores. The Palm device and the adapter will usually slip into a shirt pocket. Some models use the PDA's connecting cable, some include a cable and some are cradles that allow the PDA to nest in place and connect directly to the Palm base socket. PalmTerm Freeware allows you to transmit and receive data from the Palm serial port.

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How I can transfer my files from a Acterna 5100E OTDR to my laptop? It only has a standard internal flash drive and 9 pin output. I have the original software.

This devices interface is extremely old technology the 9 pin connector is most likely a rs232 serial interface . If your laptop has a 9 pin rs232 interface you may need a DTE to DCE adapter .
if you do not have this old rs232 port on your laptop I think this device a usb to null modem rs232 DB9 Serial DCS Adapter Cable with FTDI.
from my reading of the manual a null modem may be needed

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We bought some time ago an WD External Harddisk and now the Adapter doesn`t work anymore! What can I do?

Try connecting it to a different computer.

Any external storage device has three major parts:
* USB cable
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* USB-to-disk-drive adapter

Try a different USB cable.

Disconnect the disk-drive from that adapter, and connect the disk-drive as a "slave" disk-drive in a desktop computer, and see if you can read the files, which implies that the adapter is the part that has failed.

If you cannot read from the disk-drive, check its WARRANTY status. W.D. will replace it, if the warranty is still valid.

Otherwise, W.D. has a "Customer Loyalty" program: find the serial-number of your unit, access their web-site, and purchase another W.D. external storage unit, at a significant discount, by citing the serial-number.

Or, if the adapter is OK, then replace the disk-drive by a new one, and close-up the casing, to create a "revived" external storage device for your use.

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There are serial port to USB adapters, but can't you use a USB cable by itself? You can find the adapters at or


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1 Answer

Serial USB connection to an old palm

This is a common issue, you might want to try these, in hope 1 of them will work: - make sure there's no problem in the configurations of the devices and their both connection is to USB. - there's probably a collision with anther device that is connected to the palm, try doing uninstall to everything, do a hard reset, run " activesync" or " hotsync" and reconnect. - there's maybe a problem in the drivers, try reinstall them. - if you are using 3.16 pm, there's probably a collision

Feb 23, 2006 | Palm Vx Handheld

1 Answer

Connecting old palm vx with serial output tought usb

Hi, Few Things that you may do to fix this problem: 1. Is the "Local Serial" checked when you click the hot sync icon in the PC tray? 2. Look for ?hotsyncheck? at maybe this can help. hope this will help' Daniel

Feb 09, 2006 | Palm Vx Handheld

3 Answers

Connection is lost (6410)

First open the HotSync custom menu, start changing conduits to do nothing. Work your way down the list until you end up with a complete HotSync. If you still have the 6410 error, unplug the USB adapter, replug and try your HotSync again. The USB adapter may be the week link in this equation.

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