This is a good solid adapter. I am using these in a manufacturing plant and they stand up to heat, humidity, and vibration. The pig tail is just the right length.
Installation - you must first download the driver package. The company website, trendnet, has the most current driver available there. Install the driver package. Then plug in the adapter. It doesn't matter what OS you are using, follow those steps and you will have no problems getting this to work. The drivers are fine from Windows ME all the way up to Win 7. I am using this adapter on XP, 2000, and 7 (32 bit).
Remember that if you pull out the USB end of the adapter and plug it into a DIFFERENT USB port on your computer (or in a hub) the adapter WILL be assigned a new COM port. That seems counter-intuitive and can be the reason a device might work fine, but then mysteriously stop working the next time. Each USB port on your computer is a different hardware address, and Windows understands it to be a whole new device, so it assigns the adapter a new com port number.
The best way to troubleshoot the thing is to download a copy of Tera Terminal. It is a highly recommended program for Windows 7 (HyperTerminal is not included in Win7). Tera Terminal allows you to test the serial connection. After using both for a while now, Tera Term is a much better program and much easier to use than HyperTerminal. I will switch even for non Win7 computers.
There is another USB to Serial adapter, [...] USB-to-RS232 Serial DB9 Adapter Cable (ICUSB232) that uses exactly the same driver. In my estimation, they both use exactly the same chip inside the adapter. This particular adapter comes in more modern packaging, the USB cable is a bit longer - around 12 inches, and it looks better. After my testing on both of these, you could use them interchangeably, shop based on price.
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