|Summary||USB 1.1 Device server with support for wide range of USB devices. Does not support USB audio / video (Isochronous) devices|
|Keyspan USB Server|
|Summary||USB 1.1 Device server with built-in 4 port hub and primarily printer, scanner and multifunction printer support. Does not support USB audio / video (Isochronous) devices|
|Silex SX-1000U||KeySpan USB Server|
|Supports up to 15 devices (via additional USB hubs)||
Windows 2000, Windows XP only
Hard to find
Max Transfer Speeds of 12Mbs
1:1 device-to-host configuration
Requires external USB hub to support
more than one device Does not support webcams or other Isochronous USB devices
|Built-in 4 port USB 1.1 hub Supports Mac OS X v10.2.8 and up as well as WinXP, 2000 Widely available 1:N (automatic) sharing for USB printers||Max Transfer Speeds of 12Mbs 1:1 device-to-host configuration Does not support webcams or other Isochronous USB devices|
What exactly is a USB Server? Well, to put it simply, a USB Server allows you to access USB Devices over the network through Ethernet. There are significant benefits to USB serving, including being able to share a multi-function USB printer, which you normally cannot fully do in a Windows Network. However, each networked USB device must be used in one-to-one device-to-host relationship based on "reservations" made by each user. The exception to this 1:1 device-to-host relationship is for USB printers, which I'll touch on later.
In this review, I'll be comparing two USB Server products: the Silex SX-1000U USB Device Server and Keyspan USB Server.