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serial device won't work

Posted on 1998-06-03
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Last Modified: 2010-04-26
I just bought a device called Pocket Quicken.  It is a little hand held unit which interfaces with Quicken.  This device will not work on my serial port (com2).  I have my mouse on com1 (irq 04), com2 (irq 03) is available, com3 (irq 04) is available, and com 4 (irq 03) is available.  When I phoned tech support, they told me that with this particular device, the irq must be at least one number away from any other device.  The only irq's I have available are 09, 10, 11, and 12.  Is there any add-on I can puchase to solve this problem?  If I converted my mouse to a bus mouse and configured the device to irq 03 on com 2, would it conflict with irq 02 (programmable interupt controller)?
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Question by:deross
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Otta earned 100 total points
ID: 1135813
In your BIOS-setup mode,
check that your motherboard's own COM2
port is "enabled".
COM1 usually uses IRQ #4,
and COM2 usually uses IRQ #3.

In Windows 95, remove the COM2 port
(from Control Panels -- Hardware),
shutdown, and reboot, and let Plug-and-Pray
try to redefine it.
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by:tchris
ID: 1135814
I have never heard of any device that "requires the IRQ to be at least one away from any other device".  That sounds prett fishy to me.

Terry
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by:Otta
ID: 1135815
There's very few situations where two devices can "share" an IRQ,
i.e., one device has an IRQ which is "zero" units "away" from
the other device.

For me, I find that my modem on COM4 uses IRQ #3,
and my digital-camera's software uses COM2 and IRQ #3.
Of course, I don't use both at the same time,
but "three" minus "three" is less than "one" unit.

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Expert Comment

by:tchris
ID: 1135816
Well, if that is what they meant by telling him "one away from any other device", then it was at least a wordy way of saying that it needs a unique IRQ.  I took it to mean that it had to have three sequential IRQs; with nothing using either adjacent IRQ.  Kinda strange either way IMHO.

Also, what kind of PDA is your Pocket Quicken running on?  From what I understand, it is software that runs on a PDA such as a Pilot, etc..

Terry
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Author Comment

by:deross
ID: 1135817
I guess I should have added that I have tested another device on COM 2 IRQ 03 and it works fine.  But like I said, the tech support person I spoke with told me that with this particular device, both adjacent IRQs must be unoccupied (it does sound strange).  Is there no solution?
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by:tchris
ID: 1135818
If this is just a serial device, plugged into an RS-232 port, then there is *no* way for the device to know *what* IRQ it is on.  The port itself needs an IRQ, but devices plugged into it do not.  An RS-232 device only cares that it is getting plugged into a live RS-232 serial port.

Given what you have described, either you may have misunderstood the tech support person, or they don't understand serial ports very well.  If other serial devices work fine on the port, then their device is / has the problem, not your computer.

Check to insure that the baud rates, data bits, stop bits, parity, and flow control ALL match up between your port settings (Found in the device manager tree under PORTS -> COMMUNICATIONS PORT (COM2) -> Properties) and the communications settings for the Pocket Quicken.  If they do, then I would suspect the PQ as the culprit.

Terry
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