How to stop usb mouse and s/card conflicting?

March 5, 2011 at 08:59:53
Specs: Windows 7 Home Premium 64-bit, Core i3@2.4GHz/4GB RAM
Product: Acer Aspire 5742 Laptop.

When using music production software, my usb soundcard cannot function so long as the usb mouse is plugged in. Otherwise the two devices work fine.
All drivers are good and up to date as far as I'm aware...
The laptop has three physical usb ports.
The soundcard and mouse are obviously being plugged into separate, physical usb ports.
The motherboard has two enhanced usb host controllers.
One of the host controllers hosts a 6 port (virtual) hub that only seems to host the webcam that is built into the laptop.
The other controller hosts an 8 port (virtual) hub that hosts whatever is plugged into the three physical usb ports.
(BTW, Can I assign one of the physical usb ports to connect to the other usb host controller (the one that hosts the webcam)? That way, I can connect the mouse and the soundcard to different host controllers?)

Any advice greatly appreciated anyway...

boiler


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#1
March 5, 2011 at 10:13:18
I know from experience that some USB mouse models conflict with other USB devices, for reasons I've never been able to figure out.
Try a different model of mouse.

The term CARD is frequently mis-used.
If a device is NOT on a physical card that plugs into a slot on the mboard surface, IT'S NOT A CARD !
You have a USB sound adapter but it's NOT a sound CARD .

You have three built in USB ports. Each of those should work fine with any USB device, with the following possible exception.

Directly connected to the mboard USB ports are supposed to be able to supply up to 500ma each, however the USB ports on some laptops cannot do that.That should not be a problem unless you plug in an external hard drive, or an external optical drive, which requires that the port can supply the full 500ma.

External USB hubs you plug into one built in USB port DO NOT work with all USB devices, even when the hub is "powered" - has an external power adapter plugged into the hub.

If you need more ports that can probably actually supply 500ma per port, or more directly connected to the mboard ports that will more likely work with any device otherwise, you can get a PCMCIA (PC Card) or ExpressCard USB 2.0 (or USB 3.0 ?) controller multiple port adapter cheaply. However, all the ones I've examined the specs for support 500ma total current for all the ports, not each port, unless the adapter has a jack a 5v external power adapter can be plugged into and you plug one in.


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#2
March 5, 2011 at 12:44:40
You MAY have more than one USB controller. Especially if you have a built in card reader. If so, try using a different USB port for one or the other of the devices. Best if you can find which one is serving the card reader and use that one for the mouse too. That will leave the USB sound card by itself.

USB controllers usually serve TWO USB ports. When an internal card reader is present it is usually piggybacked onto a controller, so you end up with the card reader and 2 ports on one controller.

The fact that you have three USB ports indicates you either have all on one controller or you have TWO controllers.


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#3
March 6, 2011 at 02:09:20
Hey thanks for the replies...
My usb sound ADAPTER does require the full 500mA, however, I'm not convinced that lack of power is the issue because the sound adapter has its own (optional) power supply and the problem still occurs when this is being used...

I'm pretty sure all three of the usb ports are on the one controller and that I do have two controllers -- In Device Manager>View, Devices by Connection, the built-in webcam shows up on one controller and any devices plugged into the usb ports show up on another controller. I do have a card reader but I'm not sure how this fits into the equation...
I tried plugging the devices into different ports in different combinations and the problem still occured.

In conclusion, I will try a different usb mouse and get back to y'all.


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Related Solutions

#4
March 6, 2011 at 07:28:49
Okay, same thing occurs with a different usb mouse and also a usb keyboard incidentally. Now think it's probably a power issue with the OS/driver not intelligent enough to recognise when the sound adapter is being powered by its own power supply. Still think the answer would be to assign one of the physical usb ports to connect to the other host controller. Not sure if that's possible though -- maybe an advanced BIOS setting? The other thing would be if a future driver update for the sound adapter included a feature where it told the OS if it was being powered by its own power supply?
Didn't quite follow the suggestion made by tubesandwires, is it being suggested that a PC card or express card would solve this (don't want to throw cash at this problem unless it will definitely work...)
Thanks

boiler


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#5
March 6, 2011 at 09:27:52
You can find out how much current a USB device draws in
Device Manager - USB Controllers - Root Hub - Power tab. However, I'm not sure whether that is a actual reading or an an un-changing static rating specified in specs Windows has been supplied with for the device.

A USB 2.0 controller is backward compatible with USB 1.1 specs.
Device Manager shows both it's USB 2.0 support (Enhanced or similar Host Controller) and it's USB 1.1 support (Enhanced or similar NOT in the Host Controller line).

When you look at Root Hub - Power tab....
Root Hubs for the USB 1.1 support usually have two ports per Root Hub on older mboards, sometimes they have one, or three on newer mboards.
Root Hubs for the USB 2.0 support always have more than three ports per Root Hub.
The total number of USB 1.1 Root Hub ports = the total number of USB 2.0 Root Hub ports - they are the same ports, dual purpose.

A device Windows "knows" works fine with only USB 1.1 support is only shown as drawing current in a USB 1.1 Root Hub.
A device Windows "knows" is supposed to work better if it has USB 2.0 support is often only shown as drawing current in a USB 2.0 Root Hub.

"I do have a card reader but I'm not sure how this fits into the equation."

Typically, a card reader connects to a header for one USB port connection on the mboard, however many types of cards it can read.
...........

"Okay, same thing occurs with a different usb mouse and also a usb keyboard incidentally."

Is that ONLY when the USB sound adapter is plugged in ?
Is that when they are all plugged in ONLY to the USB ports built into the computer ?

" Now think it's probably a power issue with the OS/driver not intelligent enough to recognise when the sound adapter is being powered by its own power supply."

500ma x 5v = only 2.5 watts max available through the USB connection. The USB port supplies only 5v - the USB sound adapter may need another voltage such as 12v (what voltage is printed on the external power adapter ?) and far more current.
What are the input voltage(s) and current ratings the USB sound adapter needs ?

The OS has nothing to do with it.
If the laptop has a current per USB port problem, it's a hardware problem.
E.g. if the USB sound adapter works fine when it's the only thing plugged it, doesn't work fine when anything else is plugged in at the same time (I have NEVER heard of a USB connected keyboard conflicting with anything, and it draws very little power), if the USB adapter actually requires 500 ma via the USB connection, your laptop can't supply 500ma per port.
You could try using a USB Y cable with the USB sound adapter when you have another USB device plugged in, with two USB plugs on the computer end plugged in. If you already have an external 2.5" (e.g. "Portable") hard drive, you may already have a Y cable that will plug into the USB sound adapter. Otherwise, you can probably buy a suitable one locally.

"... being suggested that a PC card or express card would solve this (don't want to throw cash at this problem unless it will definitely work.."

They WILL solve your problem if your problem is due to your built in USB ports cannot supply 500ma per port, however, as I said above.....
"....all the ones I've examined the specs for support 500ma total current for all the ports, not each port, unless the adapter has a jack a 5v external power adapter can be plugged into and you plug one in."

The USB sound adapter will work for sure if it's the only thing plugged into the multiple ports for the device, but you may have the same problem when you plug in the USB adapter AND something else into the multiple ports for the device.

They are NOT expensive. If you live in a reasonably large city, local places often have them in stock.Otherwise, they are easily available on the web.


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#6
March 6, 2011 at 12:38:27
Okay, thanks for reply...

"Is that ONLY when the USB sound adapter is plugged in ?
Is that when they are all plugged in ONLY to the USB ports built into the computer ?"

Yes to both q's -- just to reiterate, the devices work fine most of the time. The only time there's a problem is when I'm using music production software and then the usb sound adapter (or audio interface actually) only works so long as I don't also plug in a usb mouse or keyboard. Strangely, I can plug in my usb midi keyboard and the audio inferface still functions... although maybe it's significant that in device manager, the midi keyboard is listed as requiring zero mA...

"What are the input voltage(s) and current ratings the USB sound adapter needs "

Well an external power adapter is required to be 9v, 500mA so 4.5W max -- but I think this might be a red herring insomuch as the audio interface is designed to work without an external power adapter and does not come packaged with one. The only time it is recommended that you use an external power adapter is when you are using a microphone that requires phantom power with the audio interface...

...It sounds like a PC/Express card is the way to go, unfortunately it doesn't look like I have a PC/Express slot on my laptop (my fault for getting a cheap laptop)...

Still not sure if I have one or two usb host controllers. Two controllers are listed in device manager and both are stated as being located on the same PCI bus ("0") but the two have different device numbers. The "USB root hubs" of both controllers are stated as running at high-speed ("advanced" tab). Still wondering if I can assign one of the physical usb ports to connect to the webcams host controller?

boiler


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#7
March 6, 2011 at 17:00:41
"I can plug in my usb midi keyboard and the audio inferface still functions... although maybe it's significant that in device manager, the midi keyboard is listed as requiring zero mA..."

The older way of connecting a MIDI device is by means of a MIDI to 15 pin game port adapter, to a game port that supports both joysticks and MIDI connections, found on sound cards and on onboard sound game ports. Zero power required for that too. It's merely gender adapters and wires.

"...the audio interface is designed to work without an external power adapter and does not come packaged with one...."

In that case it probably MUST be plugged into a port that can supply 500ma.
Look up the current drawn for it in Device Manager when only it is plugged in (see above in response 5).

"It sounds like a PC/Express card is the way to go, unfortunately it doesn't look like I have a PC/Express slot on my laptop (my fault for getting a cheap laptop)...

It may not have a PCMCIA (PC Card) slot - that's an older technology - but it should have an ExpressCard slot. You usually need to remove a plastic plug in the slot in order to use it.
See the Owner's or User's Manual for the model. It's often already there in the brand name software installation in you All Programs list somewhere.

"Still not sure if I have one or two usb host controllers."

See response 5.
You probably have only (a) USB 2.0 controller(s) but Windows installs support for it's / their built USB 1.1 support too.
The number of USB 2.0 controllers you have is shown by the number of Enhanced (or similar) Host Controllers listed. There are always more Host controllers listed without Enhanced or similar listed in the lines, for the USB controller's built in USB 1.1 support.
The total number of USB 1.1 Root Hub ports = the total number of USB 2.0 Root Hub ports - they are the same ports, dual purpose.

It's usually not relevant for a laptop or netbook how many USB controllers you have or the total number of ports listed for them because the chips often support more USB port connections than you can possibly connect to - there are no internal USB headers inside the laptop other than possibly one for a card reader, one for a web cam, one for the touchpad (the touchpad is often PS/2 connected).

On the other hand, on a desktop mboard, you can usually use every one of the total number of possible USB port connections, if there are enough headers on the mboard.


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#8
March 7, 2011 at 01:27:43
Thanks for reply...

"Look up the current drawn for it in Device Manager when only it is plugged in (see above in response 5)."

I'm not sure that it's "current drawn" exactly but the "power [sic] required" for the audio interface (when only the audio interface is plugged in) is 500mA...

"It may not have a PCMCIA (PC Card) slot - that's an older technology - but it should have an ExpressCard slot."

I double-checked and no, unfortunately I do not have an ExpressCard Slot...

"The number of USB 2.0 controllers you have is shown by the number of Enhanced (or similar) Host Controllers listed"

Well that's two, but one seems to be exclusively for the webcam (which I'd quite happily disable when doing music)...

So it seems I may be stuck...oh well, pretty cheap laptop as I said...

One other thing I forgot to mention, if I load up the music production software with only the usb audio interface plugged in and then I plug in the usb mouse, it is the mouse that won't function, rather than the audio interface...but I guess that is consistent with the problem being 500mA total rather than 500mA per port...


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#9
March 7, 2011 at 06:48:25
Referring back to your first post you don't state where the card reader is connected. It should be running off one on the USB controllers.

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#10
March 7, 2011 at 07:52:47
OtheHill

He did say "I do have a card reader ..." in response 3.

boiler

Since you have two USB 2.0 controllers, you should be able to AT LEAST draw 500ma from each one.
You probably don't need to be concerned about disabling the webcam regarding the USB sound adapter, and I doubt you can disable it in your bios settings.

The card reader is shown as a USB mass storage device in the Device Manager - USB Controllers listings.
I have an accessory (installed in a drive bay) card reader on my desktop computer that connects to a connection for one USB port and it shows up as USB mass storage device Power required 500ma in one of the two USB 2.0 Root Hubs - Power tab.

I have two USB 2.0 controllers on that computer.
There are four Root Hub listings for the USB 1.1 support, 3 ports per Root Hub.
The only thing that currently shows up with a figure for Power required when I click on the Power tab in all of those is a USB mouse.
The last two Root Hub listings are for the USB 2.0 support, 6 ports per Root Hub.
The card reader shows up there as a USB mass storage device, Power required 500ma when I click on the Power tab

When I have USB flash drives plugged in, there is a USB mass storage device listing for each one, and they only show up as Power required xx ma in the USB 2.0 Root Hubs when I click on the Power tab

(See response 5 for more info if you need to)

Depending on which USB 2.0 controller the card reader and web cam draw power from, you could
- disable them in Device Manager but I don't know whether they still draw power when you do that (disable the USB mass storage device for the card reader)
- disable the webcam in the bios if that's even possible
- disconnect them inside the laptop if you never intend to use one or the other or both

OR - try using an external powered hub that connects to one built in port on the laptop - one you can plug in a 5v power adapter into (you usually have to buy the power adapter separately ) - but they DO NOT work with everything even when they are powered..


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#11
March 7, 2011 at 10:03:43
Tubes, he didn't state where it is configured. Got to be on one of the USB controllers.

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#12
March 7, 2011 at 10:59:40
OtheHill

I told him where my card reader shows up in response 10.

He should find the same or similar.


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