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Computer wont start after installing internal mobo usb header extension cable

Mark O'Brien
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Last Modified: 2014-12-03
Hi techs, I installed an internal card reader, but the internal usb cable wouldnt reach the header on the board so I had to get an extension cable.  I thought I connected it correctly but the computer wont pwr on.  If I disconnect the cable, then it will power on again so Im doing something wrong with the cable.  The ext. cable is tough to figure out b/c it has four free connectors instead of one on each end.
Any help is appreciated.
Thank you!
Mark88
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JohnBusiness Consultant (Owner)
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Mark O'BrienDispatch Software Support and Server Administration

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The rep at Microcenter found the cable for me.  I dont think they have anything else
JohnBusiness Consultant (Owner)
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See if they can tell you which are the appropriate ends to use. You may need to try a different source for a cable.

You may even need to try a different reader made for your machine.
KimputerIT Manager
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The reader is already installed and it was not easy to do it.  I hope I can figure this out.

- Also, did trying to pwr on the computer while it would not power damage anything?
KimputerIT Manager
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As you've shown the picture just now (before I finished the post), the order was already correct it seems. It just means you have to connect it so the red connects to the first pin on the side where it's symmetrical (2 pins, not the side where it ends with only one pin).
Dr. KlahnPrincipal Software Engineer
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When I disconnected the ext. cable and powered on, I got a bios error that told me to choose the last known good.
I hope I didnt short anything out :(
JohnBusiness Consultant (Owner)
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Disconnect all the cables and remove the card. Now start the computer to see if it runs, or if there is now a hardware issue.

If no, put the card back in. I don't really recommend using the wrong cable, but if you must, make sure it is oriented correctly.

I would be inclined to remove the card and leave it until you can get the correct cable for it.
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Mark O'BrienDispatch Software Support and Server Administration

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There's the cable.  Also, I removed the reader from the bay and connected it to the board directly and it works.
JohnBusiness Consultant (Owner)
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So the card and computer are OK. You really need to get a correct cable if you can. Otherwise you need to sort out the pinouts and determine which to connect.
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Dr Klahn, so you mentioned about shorts.  How do I know if I broke the board?  

Anybody look at the pic?
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JohnBusiness Consultant (Owner)
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The picture is just a picture of a cable (the one I looked at) and does not help with pinouts.

Your computer (your other post) is ancient and getting a modern card into it may be troublesome.
Mark O'BrienDispatch Software Support and Server Administration

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there's no card being installed
JohnBusiness Consultant (Owner)
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Sorry - it is a header.  Still old machine, new cable may be troublesome.
KimputerIT Manager
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As I already explained much earlier, the cable is correct and standard. I already told you about the colors before I even saw the picture.
Mark O'BrienDispatch Software Support and Server Administration

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Oh I see it now Kimputer.  This board has two usb headers.  I have that part.  I just dont know how to get the pins in the right connectors.
Mark O'BrienDispatch Software Support and Server Administration

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Im firstly wondering why the extention cable has two separate cables cabletied together!
Mark O'BrienDispatch Software Support and Server Administration

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wow, too many colors on these connectors!  I have no idea...........
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Check continuity in the cable with a meter...just pin the terminal to get your leads.
Mark O'BrienDispatch Software Support and Server Administration

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Am I using both cables for the reader and the header?
Gary CaseRetired
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"... Also, I removed the reader from the bay and connected it to the board directly and it works. "  ==>  Okay, now look very carefully at the pins on the reader, and be CERTAIN that when you connect it with the extension they pins are being connected in the same order as when it's directly plugged in to the header.

Note that the reason your extension cable has two sets of extensions tied together is to allow you to extend both of the ports on that header.   Most likely you're only using one of the ports, so you don't really need to use both of them -- you should be able to tell that by looking carefully at the plug from the reader.    If you're not sure, use both extensions, but as already noted be SURE that you're plugging them in consistently -- and be CERTAIN that you're plugging the reader into the correct set of pins so that electrically the connections are identical to when you plugged it directly into the USB header.
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KimputerIT Manager
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I explained several times already. The colors on the cable in the pic ARE correct (standard). So put the red pin to the header on the side where it's symmetrical (2 pins, not the one with only one), there's only one way to put it where all 4 pins are connected (horizontally, not vertically). Your cable is meant for two devices (just as a header is meant for two devices)
So here it is, the USB header

00000
0000

x0000
x000

Align it so that the x is the red pin, that's all!
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in case you need it, here the pinout of the usb header :
u
Mark O'BrienDispatch Software Support and Server Administration

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The cable they sold me has 8 pins, and the header has 9
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i said before that the single pin is not used - pin 5 on the drawing
but you must connect the black wire to grnd -  so be sure not to invert the plug; then you short out +5V
Mark O'BrienDispatch Software Support and Server Administration

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So there would not be any loss of functionality wth a missing pin?
Mark O'BrienDispatch Software Support and Server Administration

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The reader has these colors:
Black Green White Red
Green Red Orange Orange Blue
Gary CaseRetired
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Forget the colors !!

Think about the physical connections.

The reader works fine when you plug it into the USB header.

Note that the wire that's plugged into the 5th pin on the row of 5 isn't used -- as already noted, there are only 4 wires actually used in a USB connection.

Now install the extensions so that pins on the reader are connecting to exactly the same pins they were plugged into when you directly connected it.    The electrons moving along the wires don't care what color they are !!
Mark O'BrienDispatch Software Support and Server Administration

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Why does the reader have 9 pins if only 8 get used?  Wouldnt they have block #5 too?
JohnBusiness Consultant (Owner)
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Your computer is quite ancient if I recall correctly, and it is also possible that the cables today do not accommodate equipment that old.
Mark O'BrienDispatch Software Support and Server Administration

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The case is old, mobo is 4/5 years old, so new
Mark O'BrienDispatch Software Support and Server Administration

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So there would not be any loss of functionality wth a missing pin?
Mark O'BrienDispatch Software Support and Server Administration

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So I plugged in the reader like you guys said and it worked!  I did a couple restarts to test it and the mouse froze and the computer shut off.  Some really odd video issues going on too, and I hope I didn't blow this $250 card.  I tried three times to turn it back on but it wont boot.  :(  So I disconnected the header cable and tried again and it starts now and for 20 minutes now it hasn't shut down.  

I wonder if I blew that usb header?
Gary CaseRetired
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"... So there would not be any loss of functionality wth a missing pin? "  ==> There's no "missing pin".    Note the USB header pinout shown a couple of posts above -- pin 5 is labeled "NC" ... which means there's nothing connected to it.    Why your reader has a wire to it is a good question, but the pin has no function except to serve as a "key" so you can't plug a USB plug into the header incorrectly.

Are you CERTAIN that you have the cables installed so that all of the connections on the reader are identical to what they were when you had it plugged directly into the header?
Gary CaseRetired
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Just for consistency, I'd connect the two cables as follows:

USB+5v  -  Red
LDM1     -  White
LDP1      -  Green
Gnd       -   Black

USB+5v  -  Red
LDM2     -  White
LDP2      -  Green
Gnd       -   Black

Then be CERTAIN that you're connected the other ends to EXACTLY the same set of pins in the cable from the reader that they would be connected to if the reader was plugged directly into the header.    Note that this means your reader will have one wire that's not connected to anything.
Mark O'BrienDispatch Software Support and Server Administration

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Yes, I connected the extension cable on the board same as to the reader - as in a parallel connection.
Mark O'BrienDispatch Software Support and Server Administration

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* Forgot to mention that the reader's pwr indicator light stays on even when the pc is shut down, which I thought was odd too.
Gary CaseRetired
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The power indicator simply indicates that the USB port is still powered when the PC is turned off.    This is likely an option in the BIOS ... or, if you're putting the PC into Standby (sleep) mode instead of powering off, is controlled by Windows' power options.
Mark O'BrienDispatch Software Support and Server Administration

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Should I reconnect the reader again and see if it hangs/shutsdown the computer?  Should I try the other usb header?
Gary CaseRetired
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If you reconnect it, be CERTAIN that you have the wires connected to the correct pins -- as we've outlined several times above.    You could try a different header if you want, but I doubt that will make any difference.   Just be sure it's a USB header -- not some other interface (e.g. IEEE-488).
Gary CaseRetired
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... You could also try connecting the reader directly to the header just to be sure your problem isn't a defective reader that's causing problems.    If it works okay like that, it should certainly work fine with the extension cables you have.
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if you're not sure, let someone with more knowledge help you, or take it to a shop - they'll help you out fast
Mark O'BrienDispatch Software Support and Server Administration

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I am certain its usb and that its connected correctly when its connected.   Anyone know why the computer shuts off or why the mouse and keyboard stop responding?
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because you shorted some signal, or power lines
Gary CaseRetired
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Do you have the problem if the reader is plugged directly into the USB port (without any extension) ?

If so, you have a defective reader.    If not, then one of the extension cables is bad OR you have it connected incorrectly.
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it seems the reader is ok, since it works when directly plugged
Mark O'BrienDispatch Software Support and Server Administration

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plugged reader back directly into header agan and pc has not hung up yet after 3 hours.
Gary CaseRetired
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I know you said you checked them, but TRIPLE CHECK that you're connecting the SAME pins from the header to the SAME plugs that were plugged into the header when the reader was directly connected.    Note that nothing should be connected to the plug that was connected to Pin 5 of the header.

As I noted above, if this doesn't work, then either you've made a mistake in the wiring, or you have a defective extension cable.
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Mark O'BrienDispatch Software Support and Server Administration

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That is for a 10 pin.  This header and reader is 9
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if you insist - clip off a pin then
Mark O'BrienDispatch Software Support and Server Administration

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Oh I see.  Didnt know you could do that.
Gary CaseRetired
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"... That is for a 10 pin.  This header and reader is 9 " ==> NO.   Your header is a 10-pin socket that only has 9 pins.    The extension will work just fine.
Mark O'BrienDispatch Software Support and Server Administration

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why in the world would they put 9 wires on their connector?
Gary CaseRetired
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You're worrying this to death.    You have already shown that the reader works fine when plugged directly into the header;   so just get a new extension and resolve this once-and-for-all.    Why they put on wire on a pin that's not used is indeed a good question ... but it's also irrelevant.    Somebody apparently just felt since there were 9 pins on the header they should have a wire going to each of them :-)
Mark O'BrienDispatch Software Support and Server Administration

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I fixed this.  I installed the reader on the lowest 3.5" bay instead where I wanted it on the top 5" bay.  :(
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Mark O'BrienDispatch Software Support and Server Administration

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Nobus, I already have one.  The 5" bays are too far from the headers
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We don't have continuity
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then buy cable extenders..
Gary CaseRetired
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"... I fixed this.  I installed the reader on the lowest 3.5" bay instead where I wanted it on the top 5" bay.  :(    " ==>    I wouldn't say "fixed" ... I say you worked around it by eliminating the need for the extension.

... the little $3.68 extension I linked to above will fix it, so you can install it where you want it and it will work just fine.
Mark O'BrienDispatch Software Support and Server Administration

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lol
Mark O'BrienDispatch Software Support and Server Administration

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3Ft 1m in the case?
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Mark O'BrienDispatch Software Support and Server Administration

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Thank you all for the assistance with this.  Im going to keep the reader in the 3.5" bay for now.
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