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 Using a serial mouse
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296 Posts

Posted - 26 Feb 2002 :  16:23:04  Show Profile  Email Poster
Q: Can I use a serial mouse?

Yes. However, since most mice require power from the serial port hardware handshaking lines to operate, only fully-connected serial ports with full-power drivers will work. While acceptable for communications, low-power charge-pump devices used in mobile computing typically aren't sufficient to power a mouse.

The Graphics Master (serial ports A and B) offers full-power serial buffers as a production option. Consult ADS for a build of CE that includes the mouse drivers and hardware necessary to drive your mouse. Configuration charges may apply.

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1519 Posts

Posted - 29 May 2003 :  10:24:08  Show Profile  Email Poster
You may be able to use a serial mouse with the "9-wire" serial ports. Mice draw power from both RTS and DTR, which together provide enough current from the charge pumps to power some mice.
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1519 Posts

Posted - 05 Feb 2004 :  10:35:31  Show Profile  Email Poster

Connecting a Serial Mouse

A number of our products use the Maxim MAX3243 or equivalent for their nine-wire serial ports (e.g. BitsyX Serial 1; AGX Serial A, B and 3). Maxim guarantees mouse driveability with this part.

Mouse Power

Serial mouse drivers typically use the DTR and RTS lines to supply V+ to the mouse, while the TX line in its idle state supplies V-.

Making the Connection

To use a serial mouse with ADS systems, configure the hardware and serial port as follows:

1. Connect TX, RX, RTS, DTR and GND to the mouse
2. Set DTR and RTS to be active
3. Leave TX in the idle state

Items 2 and 3 are typically managed by the serial mouse driver.

OS-Specific Tips

In Windows CE, you should generally have the mouse plugged in when you boot the OS. You can dynamically connect a mouse, but you'll have to create an application that uses ActivateDevice() after plugging the mouse in. See topic 832 for details.

To use a serial mouse under Linux, see topic 903.

Further reading

MAX3243 datasheets at
Seral mouse FAQ:

Edited by akidder 1-Mar-2005: Linked this topic to forum topic index. Added link to Linux post.
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