Why Portable Hard Drives Have Two USB Plugs

FelixTheS By FelixTheS, 8th Jul 2011 | Follow this author | RSS Feed
Posted in Wikinut>Guides>Technology>Computer Hardware

The reasons behind why portable hard drives come with two USB plugs.


If you've bought a portable hard drive, you will have noticed that the cable has three ends. One small one, and two normal sized ones. If you have wondered why there are two ends for the computer and which one to use, this article is for you.

The reason behind the two plugs

As we have already established, there are two plugs which fit the USB ports of your computer. There's one which has a single cable coming out of it, and one with two. Why? The later is the main one. If you have bought your computer sometime in the last 5 or 6 years, that's the only one you'd need. This plug is used for data transfer and to supply power to the hard drive. The additional plug only supplies power. If you own a very old computer, you'll probably need this one too. It may also be required if your using a laptop and/or have a lot of devices plugged into the other USB ports. In the previously mentioned cases, not enough power is supplied to each USB port, so the second cable is required to supply the hard disk with enough energy to function properly.

How to find out what's right for you

This is pretty simple. First plug in the double cable. Give it a few seconds to start spinning. If your hard drive doesn't show up after about 15 seconds, go ahead and plug in the other one too. If it still doesn't work, check all connections. Still not working? You've then got either a broken hard drive or a faulty cable - return it to the shop, asking for a replacement or repair.

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author avatar FelixTheS
I'm here to write about a wide range of topics including Technology, Business, News, Travel and more.
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author avatar Denise O
9th Jul 2011 (#)

Why do Portable Hard Drives Have Two USB Plugs. Well, now I know. Nice read. Thank you for sharing.:)

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