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Application Note: Connect Your Barcode Scanner to Any Operating System as a USB Keyboard
by Juan Worle on June 30, 2011
posted in Solutions & Applications
Hello everyone,

I wanted to share a little information with you about a quick and convenient way to connect your barcode scanner to any computer’s operating system (Mac or PC) as a USB Keyboard. As you may know, the standard connection for Microscan barcode scanners is a serial (RS232) plug, which has historically been a standard port type on computers. The need for alternative connection has grown in recent years, however, as many new computers (especially laptops) are reducing serial (RS232) ports in favor of USB.

To solve this connection problem, several serial-to-USB converters have made their way onto the market. Most of these converters use an installed driver to create a virtual serial COM port on the computer. Rarer to find is an adapter that can convert RS-232 into USB Keyboard emulation, which does not require driver installation. One such converter is Intelletto Serial (RS232) to USB Keyboard Converter Cable. This cable connects any serial device to any operating system as a USB Keyboard. We’ve been using these adapters at Microscan for a while now to convert our scanners’ standard serial plugs to USB Keyboard in response to the increasing popularity of USB connectivity and ease of use of the USB Keyboard connection.

Besides the standard converter cable, Intelletto also has a powered version of their converter cable available with 5V USB bus power coming out on pin 9. Because the power comes out on pin 9, we can connect the dongle from the Microscan IC-3USB (98-000051-01) to the device for a single cable solution identical to the IC-3USB, but with USB Keyboard emulation instead of COM port emulation. This setup is the most convenient because it eliminates the need for device driver downloads, keyboard redirector software, and external power sources, allowing for simple plug-and-play use of any barcode scanner.



This photo shows the Microscan MS-3 barcode scanner connected by way of the IC-3USB dongle to the Intelletto Serial (RS232) to USB Keyboard Converter Cable. Part specifics for this cable are available from Intelletto below:

Part Number baud (bps)  Power  Language 
HIDMDB9USBA-1E         38400  English 
HIDMDB9USBA-1G  38400  German 
HIDMDB9USBA-1F  38400  French 
HIDMDB9USBA-1EP  38400  English 
HIDMDB9USBA-1GP  38400  German 
HIDMDB9USBA-1FP  38400  French 
HIDMDB9USBA-3E  9600  English 
HIDMDB9USBA-3G  9600  German 
HIDMDB9USBA-3F   9600   French 
HIDMDB9USBA-3EP 9600 English 
HIDMDB9USBA-3GP  9600  German 
HIDMDB9USBA-3FP  9600  French 

Since Microscan does not sell this product, please contact Intelletto for more information.
Juan
Posted by Juan Worle,  Technical Training Coordinator
Juan Worle is responsible for the global training program based in the Renton, WA Global Headquarters. With nearly 15 years experience in the industry, he has held positions in Service and Support, Applications Engineering, Sales, Marketing Communications, and Product Management.

Comments

Microscan Systems
March 20, 2013 12:57pm
Hello Tony -- Thanks for your comment! I'd like to see if someone on our technical support team can answer this question for you. I will have a member of the team reach out to you via email. Thanks! Shaina Warner, Marketing Specialist, Microscan Systems
Tony Deluca
March 20, 2013 12:44pm
Do you have a driver for the IC-3USB for Windows 7? Can I use teh one for Vista?
Bob Taplett
September 7, 2011 02:44am
Juan - Thanks for the great information. This is very useful for an existing application but could be useful to many others. Great Info!

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