Serial Port Guide

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1) What does the serial port look like?
2) What if my computer doesn't have a 9-pin serial port?
3) What if my computer has only one serial port and the mouse is already using it?
4) What is the difference between a serial and a communications port?
5) What can I do to verify that my serial port is working?
6) Serial Port Troubleshooting Guide
7) Advanced Configuration

 

Q: What does the serial port look like?

A: The serial port on your computer is a 9-pin male connector. Usually, it will be located on the back of the computer, indicated by either a symbol or named Serial Port, COM Port, or I/O Port.

Q: What if my computer doesn't have a 9-pin serial port?

A: You can purchase a serial port adapter card from a local computer store. You will need to install and configure the card properly in order to use the serial port. If you have a 25-pin serial port, you can purchase a 25 to 9-pin serial adapter to use. Make sure that the 25 pin port is a serial port rather than a parallel port.

Q: What if my computer has only one serial port and the mouse is already using it?

A: Contact your computer manufacturer to see if you have a PS/2-type mouse port available on your computer. Using a PS/2 mouse will free the serial port, allowing you to plug the serial connector into the previously occupied serial port. An alternative is to purchase a serial port adapter card from a local computer store. You will need to install and configure the card properly in order to use the serial port.

Q: What is the difference between a serial and a communications port?

A: There is no difference between the two, thus these terms are interchangeable.

Q: What can I do to verify that my serial port is working?

A: If you have a serial mouse, plug the mouse into that port and see if it works. Make sure to turn off the power to the computer and then plug the mouse in. Then turn the computer back on. You can also run the Serial Port Test Program to see if your ports are functioning properly in Windows. (Note: The Serial Port Test Program is not available).

 


Serial Port Troubleshooting Guide

Highlight your Communications Port and then double-click on it to display the Communications Port Properties.

On some computers, there may be more than one Communications Port. Make sure you have the camera connected to the correct port.

 

This screen will tell you if the Communications Port is functioning properly.

Under Device Status, it should show "This device is working properly." If it does not show this, please refer to the Advanced Configuration section.

 


Advanced Configuration

This section is for advanced users who are still experiencing problems downloading pictures through the serial port.

You will need to adjust your serial port settings if you are getting errors when downloading pictures.

Original Setting
Adjusted Setting
Bits per second:
9600
57600
Data bits:
8
8
Parity:
None
None
Stop bits:
1
1
Flow control:
Xon/Xoff
Hardware

 

This screen will appear after pressing the "Advanced" button. Some serial ports may not be able to handle the original port settings and will need to be adjusted.

Move both sliders for the Receive and Transmit buffers to Low and then press "OK." The lower settings will help to correct connection problems since it will limit the incoming and outgoing data transmitted through the serial port.

 

This screen shows what your current settings are. By default, Windows will automatically have the "Use automatic settings" option selected. In some instances, the Conflicting device list may show "No conflicts," yet the Communications Port may still not function properly.

 

You may adjust the settings if the current configuration does not work. If the setting that you chose to adjust displays a conflict under "Conflicting device list:" choose another configuration until "No conflicts" is displayed

If the serial port still does not function properly after these adjustments, please contact your computer manufacturer for additional assistance. In some cases, your computer manufacturer may recommend using an add-on serial card which may work better. A serial add-on (or adapter) card can be purchased at a local computer store and will usually cost about $15-30.

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