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[ The PC Guide | Procedure Guide | Physical Installation Procedures ]

PS/2 Mouse Port Connector Physical Installation Procedure

This procedure describes how to install the port connector for a PS/2-style mouse to the case of a system that uses the AT form factor, and connect it to the motherboard. PS/2-style mice are the newer kind that use a round connector to attach to the system. They are different than conventional serial mice both in their interface and electrical signaling. You will generally use this procedure when installing a new motherboard or building a new system. In addition, some AT form factor motherboards come with a pin header on the motherboard for a PS/2 mouse but don't come with the actual port connector, so you will use this procedure if you decide to add the connector later on. ATX form factor motherboards have this connector integrated onto the board and therefore do not require this procedure.

Note: I assume that the mouse port connector is mounted into a screw-in expansion slot insert, as this is usually how this is done with AT form factor systems. You can in fact mount the PS/2 connector in an unused 9-pin serial port mounting hole directly in your system case, if you have one. (Even though the PS/2 mouse port is round, the plastic molding that holds it is sized to fit a DB9 connector hole.) This will let you save an expansion slot. If you wish to mount the PS/2 port in this way, you'll want to refer to the I/O Port Connector Physical Installation Procedure, which describes how to mount port connectors to the case directly. Then use the last step of this procedure to connect the PS/2 port to the motherboard.

Procedure Overview:

  • Difficulty Level: 2 (Low).
  • Risk Factor: 1 (Very low).
  • Hardware Required: Phillips head screwdriver, if you are going to install the ports into an expansion card slot insert.
  • Software Required: None.
  • Time to Perform: Less than 5 minutes.
  • Preparation / Warnings:
    • If you have not already done so, please read the section on general installation and assembly tips.
    • You should have the motherboard already installed in the case before commencing.
    • Make sure that the motherboard will support a PS/2 mouse port before installing it. Do not rely solely on the manual, as I have seen motherboards that differed somewhat from their manual, especially with regard to included peripherals. Locate the pin header for the port on the motherboard first.
    • Make sure that you install the correct PS/2 mouse port for the motherboard being used in the system. These ports and cables are not universal and you may have problems if you use a type that was not specifically matched to your motherboard.

Procedure Steps:

  1. Identify Slot for Installation: Choose an appropriate location for the insert. The best expansion slot to choose is one that doesn't actually line up with an expansion slot on the motherboard (most systems have more inserts in the case than the motherboard actually has slots). This way you don't unnecessarily block off any expansion slots on the motherboard. You will also generally want to use a slot near where the PS/2 port cable connects physically to the motherboard; make sure the cable will reach as it is often very short.
  2. Remove Slot Insert: If there is a metal blank in the slot you want to use, remove it using a screwdriver. Save it in case you ever need it again in the future.
  3. Install Port Connector Insert: Mount the connector port insert into place and secure it using the screwdriver.
  4. Double-Check Installation: Check to make sure the connector is installed properly. It should not be loose; try attaching a PS/2 mouse to the connector to verify that it works.
  5. Connect Cable to Motherboard: Connect the internal cable coming from the connector to the appropriate header on the motherboard. Refer to your motherboard manual if you need it. Be sure to line up the red wire on the cable with pin 1 on the connector (although some of these don't have a red wire, so be careful). The connector is usually five or six pins, though not all of the pins will necessarily have actual wires for them.

Next: Video Card Physical Installation Procedure


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