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Using the USB port for Networking

Modern PCs are now equipped with a new communication device:

The USB-Port:
Universal Serial Bus

More information on its usage and available products can be found at:


USB is supported by Windows95 OSR2.1 and Windows98
(not yet by Windows NT4, it has been announced for NT5):

It takes (like most other devices) an
Interrupt, however the advantage of USB is the possibility to connect MULTIPLE devices to USB, still using just ONE interrupt, and to connect devices without having to reboot to have Windows recognize the new hardware.
Although is it not as fast as an Ethernet Network (USB runs at 1.2 MBit), it makes sense to use it as a network connection.

However, at this time, Microsoft is NOT providing any Network driver for USB,
such USB Network support is currently only available from other suppliers (see the list at
www.usb.org ), like:

Parallel Technologies :
Net-LinQ USB Connection Cables

I have used this product for my
Introduction to USB Networking
and the Windows9x USB Networking

Anchor Chips Inc

It's a peer to peer network that runs over USB.
You can attach multiple PCs (up to 16).
Current version is 1/3 Ethernet speed ( Sept. 19,98)
(I have not tested/used this myself, so this is for your information, not a recommondation)

A special cable is required for
the USB connection.

Since additional hardware (the special USB-cable) is involved, this
is NOT available as Shareware, you need to purchase it ( 89.98 US$).
(due to this cost, you need to decide yourself, whether to use this USB networking or whether to purchase PC-Card/PCMCIA network cards, which would also allow you to connect to the company Ethernet network)

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