Parallel to USB?

Greetings:

It seems that I have seen a device that will enable one to connect several (2 or 3) parallel devices to a computer USB port.  However, after several days research I have failed to find this device again.  Now I am beginning to think I either dreamed this or have it mixed up with some other device.

Is such a gizzmo available and if so, where?

Karl
KarlAiblingAsked:
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biardConnect With a Mentor Commented:
It depends on the availability of drivers.   As in my statement above (for example) I installed a Belkin USB to Parallel cable.  I wished to install a parallel port ORB drive.  I attached the Orb drive and installed the software for it, but It would not work because it did not correctly validate the new port as standard LPT.   As I said before you will  need to be able to write your own drivers or conversion libraries to get this to work through the USB port.  Printers work.  This is the only thing I have seen work correctly (or even be installed successfully) on one of these devices.  Your scanner should have a pass thru port on it so that you can install another parallel port device piggy backed off of it.   Then, you can install your printer (because this WILL work) on the USB to parallel port cable.  If you need to install more than this, I would suggest a parallel port expansion board instead.  Additionally, it will be cheaper.
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MrbreezeCommented:
Haven't seen one that does mutiples but this one does it one at a time
Entrega CON-USB-P36 and heres their web site
www.entrega.com
                       Mrbreeze
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ApparatusCommented:
I have never hard of someting that hooks-up 2 or 3 parallel port to a usb port but there is such a thing as a usb to parallel port converter. This adapter costs about $50 at Best Buy.
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KarlAiblingAuthor Commented:
Mrbreeze, I am going to "reject" your answer for the time being.  Your answer is good and informative.  However, I am looking for the multiple parallel plug input device to a single USB plug.  If nobody comes forward  with that answer, I will return and give you credit for the answer you gave.

Apparatus, thank you for your answer but I feel as of now, Mrbreeze's answer is more complete.  Thank you.

Karl
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biardCommented:
All you really need to do is get a USB hub, and several of the usb to parallel cables.  They will be added to the system individually and be assigned individual port numbers.
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KarlAiblingAuthor Commented:
biard:  Sounds like a plan.  I would like any comments about this from anyone who has tried it.  Would hate to invest in a USB hub and at least one cable only to find this won't work.  Have YOU tried this biard???

Karl
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biardCommented:
Yes.  However, I would question what types of devices you plan to attach to the new ports?  Are they all printers?  Or do you intend to add drives or scanner, etc?  Printers will work.  I tried to install an orb drive using this method, and it would not function.  It would not even recognize it.  If the manufacturer supplies usb compliant drivers it may work.  Printers do see the port as another printer port.  This is what this type of setup is designed for.  I wouldn't try to connect anything else.
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dipnbaCommented:
Belkin makes such things and I have tried them. But for "many" peripherals to be connected you might have to buy the USB hubs though. How ever, make sure your peripherals would work if you change from parrallel to USB (my old printer didn't :P).
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KarlAiblingAuthor Commented:
Thanks dipnba for your comments.  Anyone else with first hand experience with this question.

At the present, I would like to use just a parallel port scanner in my USB port.  Since I keep getting boxed in on periphials and sockets, I would like to have room to expand.  BUT FOR THE PRESENT gentlemen, let's get ONE to work.  

Karl
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biardCommented:
I don't believe it will work with a scanner.  Those USB to parallel cables are for printers.  It will require a custom driver to be written for each device beyond a printer.  Now, you could put your scanner on your standard parallel port and then put your printer(s) on one of these devices, but otherwise, you are really going to have issues.  
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KarlAiblingAuthor Commented:
dipnba: I feel you answer is a big vague.  I need a straight answer; either it will work or it won't.  I can't afford to buy stuff to "try."  Have some of that laying around now. Sorry.
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KarlAiblingAuthor Commented:
biard:  Accept your answer.  For one thing this is turning into a guessing game.  The problem that has developed is that it is necessary to daisy chain my printer through the scanner to the LPT1 port.  This means that the scanner has to be powered up the whole time.  I don't like this.  I am from the old school of, "if it ain't being used, shut it off."  I do make an exception for the computer though.  New school.  

I have tried to run the scanner and printer through a Belkin A-B switch, using IEEE1284 cables but the scanner will not scan a picture.  

I guess a parallel expansion card is the answer biard.  Thanks all.

Karl
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biardCommented:
Well, the schools of though do vary, but consider this.  When do light bulbs burn out?  It is not while they are on.  It is when you turn them on.  The more an electrical device is turned on and off, the shorter its life expectancy becomes.  Just some food for thought.
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