Using a computer in any business usually requires to be connected to a network. For connecting to your wired network, you require a free Ethernet port on your computer. If it is not available then a USB Ethernet adapter provides the necessary connectivity. When there is no availability in your system for an add on, be it Ethernet adapter or a peripheral, you might need a USB extender. They help you to run a cable to the convenient location and still use the functionality of your system.
So, when USB plays such an important role in connectivity, let’s understand, what is it?
USB stands for Universal Serial Bus. It is a port that allows you to transmit data at high speed between your computer and peripheral devices like keyboard, external hard drive, and many such devices.
It came into the market in 1995 and since then has become an important part of our devices irrespective of their size. Its features like plug and play operating system, connecting with the other peripheral devices, set them apart from other cables in the game in connecting easily with the devices.
Going further, the USB cable is available in various types and each of them has a purpose. Let’s explore them further:
- Type A:These types of connectors are approximately 1.4 cm length by 0.65 cm in height and are typically useful for wired mice and keyboards. It sticks normally features USB-A connectors as well.
- Type B:Type B is less common in comparison to type A and is square in shape. You can find them in routers, computers, printers, and game consoles.
- Micro USB:The Micro USB is a version of Type A and B and exists in smaller versions than their base counterparts and is highly popular in mobile devices. You can find the older but obsolete mini versions in many old devices.
- Type C:The type-C has the dimensions of 0.84 cm by 0.26 cm and is a new standard designed to replace Type A and Type B with smaller ports for better support and turn it into thin form factors of mobile devices.
If you ever encounter a situation where you have to connect a device having one type of port with the other type, then use the correct type of the interface on each end. Manufacturing of various types of usb cable happens to support different combinations of types and male/female options.
There will come a time when you have to use the USB extenders because of the length limitations of USB cable. So, to help you pick the right type, let’s understand, what is a USB extender and why should you use them?
As the cables reach the limit of their length then the signals begin to degrade. The USB 3.0 has a length of just 10 feet. For the business systems, it means that if any device is using a USB port then they must be set within the 10ft of your computer system.
But, you can extend this distance with the help of a USB extender. An extender is a two-part device that extends the distance between USB port and peripheral devices using a Cat5 UTP cable.
One part of the device plugs into your USB port and the other part in your USB peripheral. Further, you’ll need to plug the UTP cable in both ends to complete the connection.
The signal transmits the data through the cable between the extender parts to extend the USB connection beyond the 10ft limit. The data speed of the extender is slow in comparison with the other connection. But most of the devices use the full 4.8 Gbps data rate capability of USB 3.0 connection.
Now let’s understand USB ports to Ethernet. Let’s see how it works:
Ethernet ports are useful to connect computers to a wired local area network or to a modem for a broadband connection. Most of the computers in organizations have one or more Ethernet connections.
Let’s say you require an Ethernet connection and don’t have a port then a USB to Ethernet adapter is just what you need. Take the adapter and plug it in the USB port and it will provide you with the Ethernet connectivity.
These adapters are ready to use, when connected they provide you with full speed for data transfers. All you need to complete the connection is just plug the Ethernet cable into the adapter and then into a network hub, router, or modem.
USB cables and USB extenders are useful in our day to day lives. They not only make our lives easy but working with them is also productive. Be it just transferring data or even internet connection, they are your go-to solutions.