Jan Axelson: Parallel Port Complete

For most folks, this is all you will ever need to know about the PC parallel port.

Related links
Computing reviews All of my Computing book reviews
Book reviews All of my book reviews
Home My home page
JPOC Rating

Seven out of ten.

Very useful indeed.

My Review

For many people involved in a project to connect something to a PC parallel port this book will be the only one needed. It contains detailed information about almost all aspects of parallel port interfacing for PC systems.

The author covers the port from the nitty gritty of designing and building custom hardware to connect to the parallel port to the higher level protocols such as the IEEE standard for daisy chain negotiation on the port.

The book covers all of the different modes of operation including ECP and EPP as well as the original parallel port and the PS/2 or bidirectional port.

As well as the descriptions of these aspects of the parallel port the book includes a disk with code to access and drive the port from Windows Visual Basic programs.

The book is aimed squarely at the PC & Windows world but it is applicable outside that environment. Many systems now include parallel ports that are register compatible with the PC parallel port from a programming point of view. More that that, the protocols that operate between the computer and the peripheral are standard and so something like the daisy chain protocol is relevant to any architecture that wants to use it.

My only criticism is the way in which some information is presented. It's not that anything is left out, but by way of an example, the IEEE standard document is a more readable description of the daisy chain protocol than this book.