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How To Identify USB 3.0 And USB 2.0 Ports

As technology keeps moving forward rather quickly, so too has the advancement of USB ports and devices, such as USB Flash Drives. Generally speaking, the transfer speed of a given USB Stick, Is only as fast as the port It's plugged Into. So how do you know whether your USB 3.0 device, Is operating at It's full potential? Well, In this tutorial, I will show you a number of ways to Identify USB 3.0 and USB 2.0 ports.

At the time of this article, there are a few types of USB connection ports, such as USB Type-A, Type-B and USB Type-C, but It's beyond the scope of this article to cover the lot. As such, I will be referring to the most commonly used, namely USB 2.0 and USB 3.0.

If you've purchased (for example) a USB 3.0 Stick, In order to get the maximum speed that It accommodates, you need to plug It Into a compatible USB port. For Instance, don't expect to gain any performance If It's Inserted Into a USB 2.0 port.

For the average user, It can be somewhat difficult to segregate the two, thus I will demonstrate a number of ways to Identify USB 2.0 and USB 3.0 ports on your device. So without further delay, let's get this tutorial started.

Using Device Manager:

Device Manager, allows you to see the different types of hardware attached to your PC. To access It, open the Run menu, enter devmgmt.msc and hit OK.

Then scroll down until you locate Universal Serial Bus controllers. Expand the view, and you'll see what's Installed. In my case, my laptop only has USB 3.0 type ports as shown below.

Looking At The Ports On Your Device:

I'd say this Is one of the easiest ways to separate one type of port from another. USB 3.0 ports are generally blue In color, whilst USB 2.0 ports are usually grey/black.

If you see an SS marking (SuperSpeed) on the port Itself, It's relative to USB 3.0/3.1 as Illustrated below.

Using A Third-Party Tool:

A very useful tool that does the job quite well, Is named USB Device Tree Viewer, that can be downloaded from the developer's website, or this reputable source. There's no need to Install It, so firstly connect your USB Stick and then execute the tool. Under Device Descriptor, you will see the port type that It's connected to. In my case, It's USB 2.10.

Here's a closer look at the description.

To test It's accuracy, I've now used the tool on another computer that's solely running USB 3.0/3.2 ports and as you can see, It's Identified It accordingly.

Again, here's a closer look at It's description.

Final Thoughts:

There's no right or wrong, In the method(s) used to Identify the types of ports Installed on your computer however just to be sure, It's good practice to use a couple. Sure there are other ways, but what I've mentioned above will well and truly suffice your needs. If you have any questions, drop a comment below.


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