parallel port

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parallel port

[′par·ə‚lel ‚pȯrt]
(electronics)

parallel port

(hardware)
An interface from a computer system where data is transferred in or out in parallel, that is, on more than one wire. A parallel port carries one bit on each wire thus multiplying the transfer rate obtainable over a single wire. There will usually be some control signals on the port as well to say when data is ready to be sent or received.

The commonest kind of parallel port is a printer port, e.g. a Centronics port which transfers eight bits at a time. Disks are also connected via special parallel ports, e.g. SCSI or IDE.

parallel port

(1) A hardware interface that transfers one or more bytes simultaneously. See parallel interface.

(2) A socket on a computer used to connect a printer or other device via a parallel interface (eight data bits transferring simultaneously). In the past, the parallel port was widely used for printers and occasionally for connecting other devices externally, but was superseded by USB.

Although some business printers may still offer parallel ports, consumer-based printers and new computers have only USB. However, parallel port devices can be hooked up to new computers with a USB-to-parallel adapter cable.

It Goes Back to the 1970s
The Centronics Data Computer Corporation, a subsidiary of Wang Laboratories in the 1970s, introduced a parallel port for printers. It was adapted for the IBM PC in 1981 and enhanced and standardized by the IEEE in 1994 (see IEEE 1284). The port first appeared on plug-in cards, but was later built into the motherboard. See Centronics interface.


In Transition
As USB ports (left) began to proliferate, the parallel and serial ports (right) were included for a while, but eventually gave way entirely to USB.




In Transition
As USB ports (left) began to proliferate, the parallel and serial ports (right) were included for a while, but eventually gave way entirely to USB.
References in periodicals archive ?
Axxon has achieved several notable milestones including the industry's first software configurable multi-port adapter, first Plug & Play serial port and the first Universal PCI Parallel port.
patent number 5,768,627 which, as implemented in the OnSpec Link family of Application Specific Integrated Chips (ASICs), ensures compatible, error-free communication between external devices such as scanners, hard drives, or CD-ROMs, and the PC's parallel port.
today announced that it has begun shipping its latest introduction to the IBM PC XT/AT and compatible parallel port adapter market.
0, our customers now benefit from increased performance when connecting to a network through the parallel port.
California Micro Devices (Nasdaq:CAMD), today announced that it has introduced the PACZIG1284, the first device to protect parallel ports against electro-magnetic interference (EMI) in PCs with frequencies from 100 MHz to 3 GHz.
The USB-Parallel Port Adapter enables users to connect a desktop or laptop PC to 10 of Pico's oscilloscope (and spectrum analyzer) instruments and six of the company's data loggers via the PC's USB port, freeing up the parallel port for printers and other peripherals.
5 MB embedded VRAM (128-bit PCI accelerator on Pentium systems), SMC Super I/O, Texas Instruments PCI1225 CardBus controller, one 10/100Base-T RJ45 jack, two 12 Mbit/sec USB ports, two RS-232 serial ports, one parallel port, IDE, FDD, and PS/2 mouse/keyboard ports, up to 256 MBytes of SODIMM SDRAM, industry-standard Phoenix BIOS, LCD interface to DSTN/TFT flat panels, CRT interface, two Type II or one Type III PC Card slots, and a Type II ATA CompactFlash slot.
The new Lexar USB-enabled CompactFlash cards and JumpSHOT USB connection kit offer a significantly faster and easier way to transfer large image files than the slow and cumbersome process of using the serial cable typically included with many digital cameras or reader devices that connect to the parallel port.
Because USB does not require IRQs, users can attach up to 127 peripherals including serial and parallel port devices with no configuration hassles," added Murray.
I/O Max allows users to add more of any type of peripheral device to their system -- including IDE devices (Iomega(TM), Syquest(TM), Imation(TM) and Mitsubishi(TM) removable drives, CD-ROMs, and tape backups), parallel port devices (removable drives, tape backups, and printers), and communications devices (modems, digitizers, and pointing devices.
USB ports also operate at faster speeds than today's serial or parallel ports.
USB, which greatly simplifies adding external peripherals to a computer, offers three distinct advantages over conventional serial and parallel ports.

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