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A computer port is a connection point or interface between a computer and an external or internal device. Internal ports may connect such devices as hard drives and CD ROM or DVD drives; external ports may connect modems, printers, mice and other devices.
Computer ports have numerous functions and connectors of varying designs. Types of computer ports include:
Typical serial ports may use a serial RS-232C or an RS-232 connector. A parallel port on a personal computer (PC) may use a Centronics interface with a 25-pin connector.
SCSI ports come in a variety of interface connections; these include:
There are also many other interfaces that do not conform to the SCSI standard but use the SCSI command protocol.
USB ports are one of the most common computer ports in use today. They are hot pluggable external connectors with 4 pins (1 for power supply, 2 for data and 1 for a ground connection), measure 4.5 mm by 11.5 mm and come with a maximum length cable of 5 meters. The maximum number of devices that can be connected to a single computer with USB computer ports is 127.