A Guide to Computer Ports and Adapters

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Today's computers and mobile devices are available with a wide array of ports, from traditional USB to newfangled USB Type-C and Thunderbolt 3 ports. Even if you're familiar with the most common connectors, it can still be a challenge to figure out what wires or adapters you need in order to plug your device into a monitor, TV, network or peripheral.

When you're shopping for a new laptop, a 2-in-1 or a hulking desktop PC, you'll also want to keep ports in mind. If you need to attach to a particular type of device on the go, you'll benefit from having that connector built-in or, at least, knowing what kind of adapter to pair with your new system. That's why we've assembled a comprehensive list of ports, along with the type and cost of adapters you'll need to use if you don't have the right connectors on built-in.

Author Bio
Avram Piltch
Avram Piltch, LAPTOP Online Editorial Director
The official Geeks Geek, as his weekly column is titled, Avram Piltch has guided the editorial and production of Laptopmag.com since 2007. With his technical knowledge and passion for testing, Avram programmed several of LAPTOP's real-world benchmarks, including the LAPTOP Battery Test. He holds a master’s degree in English from NYU.
Avram Piltch, LAPTOP Online Editorial Director on
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5 comments
  • Jayson Says:

    Looking for a definition of ports and 1 has slipped by you as well. on a brand new computer, one of the ports has a "IOIOI" marked on it with a reverse VGA connection . What is it and does it work for a monitor?

  • hussein benitho Says:

    what is the ports and connectors standads

  • Jason Says:

    You've missed a few ports:
    Parallel port
    Serial/COM port
    PCI port
    PCI-e port
    IDE port
    EIDE port
    SATA port
    PS/2 port
    Add these, and this article will be amazing!

  • Chris Moor Says:

    You are missing a port type that is still present in older external hard drives. The cable goes to USB type 1 or 2 and this odd ball port I am still looking for. It's like a flatter elongated USB printer port, not a parallel port.

  • Thevindu Says:

    awesome i liked this and this helped me for my computer H/W thank you so much.

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