FireWire and USB woes

Posted by Pierre Igot in: Macintosh
July 10th, 2003 • 9:26 pm

It’s a bit sad that, after all the excitement caused by the introduction of “plug-and-play” technologies such as USB and FireWire to REPLACE the aging and fussy ADB and SCSI ports on Mac computers, and after half a decade of Macs shipping with these new ports, we are still experiencing far too many fundamental problems with peripherals.

To wit, this recent reader report update at

Whether Windows or Mac, USB is nothing but trouble. In fact many of the USB peripherals (MIDI, audio capture) I have state that they will NOT work when connected to a hub but must be connected directly to the computer.

Then there is the situation faced by a colleague of mine, who has a FireWire LaCie PocketDrive. It’s already died on her once, requiring her to return it to LaCie for repair. The other day, all of a sudden, it failed to mount on her iBook or older G4 at home. I suggested restarting the machines, to no avail. She brought the PocketDrive to work, connected it to her dual G4 MDD and… it worked.

I too regularly experience USB and FireWire issues, from sleep-related issues caused by USB devices to my first and only kernel panic in Jaguar.

Puzzling, and very frustrating. It’s not plug-and-play; it’s plug-and-hope-you-can-play. Granted, it’s not quite as bad as SCSI used to be, with required restarts and SCSI ID and termination fiddling. But still!

Comments are closed.

Leave a Reply

Comments are closed.