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Discussion Starter · #1 ·
Hi all. This is my first post so be gentle. I'm not very computer savvy and this is probably so easy!

My desktop Windows 7 Prof has 2 X USB ports at the front panel and 4 X USB ports at the back. I'm assuming that 'port' means 'plug'? Anyway, from a USB port at the back I have a device connected by a long series of end-to-end Bluetooth extender cables into the back yard. The long cable operates in a very high temp environment and is not that reliable, but it works. To conserve its operability I wish to turn off/on the USB port (and only this port) at the back of the computer (at a very inaccessible spot) when I don't need to operate the remote device (connected to solar panel inverters via Bluetooth). The computer is used for work, so I can't really turn it off.

So summarising; how do I turn off/on one (and only one) USB port?

I've got as far as the 'Device Manager - Universal Serial Bus Controllers, but no further. PS. There's plenty of stuff out there about turning on/off all the USB ports, but nothing about turning off/on one only.

Thankyou for your help.

MatrixMailer17
 

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Re: How do I disable/enable a single USB port only?

the only way I can think of is getting a powered usb hub to make it easily accessable. some come with on/off switch.
 

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Re: How do I disable/enable a single USB port only?

If you want to turn off a USB port so the device is no longer accessible to the USB port, just unplug the cable or device from the computer ends USB port. When you need it again, plug it back in.
Be aware that USB cables are designed to work at a length of up to 6 feet. With a maximum of 10 feet. Any longer then that they will start to loose connectivity and be unstable.
 

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Re: How do I disable/enable a single USB port only?

Spunk I believe the maximum is 15' and if you look you will see that is the maximum size you can buy in a usb cable.
Lately usb hubs have been cropping up with on/off switches on the idividual ports and it would be much better doing that rather than pulling the plug in and out of the actual ports as those ports are rather flimsy and easy to break.
Amazon.com: Generic 7-Port USB Hub with ON/OFF Switch, Black (7 Port USB Hub): Computers & Accessories
 

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Re: How do I disable/enable a single USB port only?

For you Yanks, 5 Meters is 16 Feet. But IMHO I have found that anything of 6Ft or 2 Meters has connectivity issues.
 

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Discussion Starter · #8 · (Edited)
Re: How do I disable/enable a single USB port only?

Thankyou all,

I forgot to ask, would it be possible to turn an individual port off/on via the BIOS? I could probably follow some instructions. If that's not possible I'll try installing a switch of some kind as suggested.
 

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Re: How do I disable/enable a single USB port only?

No, you cannot turn off a port in the Bios, but if you have Front USB ports, they are connected via a cable to the Motherboard, where the Back USB ports are soldered onto the motherboard. You could open the case and unplug the Front USB port from the motherboard. But, wouldn't it be easier to just Unplug the device that is plugged into the USB port? That is why they designed these ports to Hot swap devices (eg) unplug them when you don't need them.
 

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Discussion Starter · #11 ·
Re: How do I disable/enable a single USB port only?

Thanks all.

From what you've all advised it looks as though the Device Manager or BIOS solutions aren't really viable. I'll need to look again at switching/unplugging the USB port or cable somehow as per suggestions. Thanks again all.
 

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Discussion Starter · #14 ·
Re: How do I disable/enable a single USB port only?

Hi Phantom010. I've looked at the webpage you've suggested. It looks interesting and may do the trick, but I can't see where to actually download USBDview from! All the download buttons simply go to other applications. I suppose ideally I'd like an application that simply turned off/on the power to a single plug, and nothing else. But if I find how/where to download USBDview from I'll try it. Thanks again ...
 

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Discussion Starter · #17 · (Edited)
Re: How do I disable/enable a single USB port only?

Thankyou both. Have found the link and successfully downloaded USBDview. I've been trying it over the last couple of hours. It seemed to work at first, but now I can't get it to turn off the USB port without rebooting which is not what I'm really after. I've tried using the non-administrator and administrator options with no luck using both 'disconnect selected devices' and 'disable selected devices' options, and one after the other in various combinations. My USB boosted cable combo and USB port seem to hang-on regardless. I'll keep working at it though.

I'm also wondering whether the USB individual port power supplies are even actually switchable in the electronics of the port drivers? But I'm in the dark really, knowing little about the semi-conductor hardware behind the plugs, or computers period. Maybe they're just fully powered all time regardless of any software changes?

Thanks again.
 

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Discussion Starter · #20 ·
Re: How do I disable/enable a single USB port only?

Hi Phantom10. OK, I've tried that. And now I'm able to get USBDview to function as needed, and I'm able to toggle my (single) USB port on/off via USBDview by simply selecting 'enable selected devices' or 'disable selected devices'. I do not even need to select 'disconnect selected devices', which I wrongly imagined would be required. The USB extension cable is turning on/off as required even when I'm logged on and all other used USB ports remain functioning normally. At first I needed to do a lot of rebooting to actually get the USBDview selections to 'accept', but I realised I needed to turn the solar panel software application off first, then it worked. I guess the software was hanging onto the port somehow. So now I can power-down the cable when I'm working, like now. Or turn it back on when I need to check the solar panels, then off again! Without having to physically unplug and plug the cable into the USB port. Great stuff!

Once again, thankyou all for the suggestions. Problem is, I think, fixed. :smile:
 
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