Orbit x-y Ball Tracker Xerox Star Mystery mouse - wheels instead of a ball Hawley Mark II X063X Lisa mouse Gibson light pen Logitech P7 Mouse Systems Optical M1 Mac M0100 serial Tablet with stylus Microsoft 'Dove bar' Internet scroll mouse Kensington Trackball notebook Trackball joystick 2-button mouse scrolling 2-button mouse NeXT mouse Kidz mouse Macintosh mouse




PC Mouse Connectors and Adapters

Early computer mice attached to workstations with various proprietary protocols and plugs. Mice for home computers began with serial connections (RS-232) with DB-25 plugs, as for Logitech's C7 series. Their P7 series were parallel with pins instead of socket plugs, judging from a blonde one at oldmouse.com.

With a Logitech bus mouse card a mouse could connect to the specific DE-9 socket or the other style round D-ring bus socket, each on an internal card designed for the mouse. Microsoft developed its In-Port™ mouse card for the round bus plug.

The wide serial plugs eventually downsized to DE-9 plugs and then to the small round PS/2 over time. Mouses using both of those connectors ran with their own internal microprocessor. An array of adapters followed. Manufacturers developed adapters to change the plug to enable using a mouse on different computer configurations rather than having to produce identical mouses but with different style plugs. At Logitech, Mike Lavelle designed the one piece DB-25 to DE-9 adapter that other manufacturers imitated shamelessly. For that audacious flattery he received a 1990 award at the end of the year from Logitech.

Lavelle adapter and matching mouse plug.
Lavelle DB-25 socket to DE-9 adapter (500066) and matching Logitech mouse plug (500068).

Z-nix copy of DB-25 socket to DE-9 adapter.
Knock-off copy of Lavelle's DB-25 socket to DE-9 adapter that came on a Z-nix mouse.

Twenty-some years later the Logitech adapter still feels nice to grip with a tactile rubbery feel and well defined ridges on the thumb screws. In contrast, the plastic on the cheap knockoff is hard and slippery making it less efficient to grip the screws.

DB-25 hole socket.
DB-25 hole socket

PS/2 Mouse Connectors and Adapters

Logitech mouse DE-9 to PS/2 adapter. Mini-din diagrams courtesy of Mobius at Wikipedia.
Logitech mouse PS/2 to DE-9 socket adapter to use a PS/2 mouse on a computer with a serial port. Diagrams courtesy of Mobius at Wikipedia.

USB Mouse Connectors and Adapters

USB plug.Serial and specific mouse ports gave way to the standardized USB Connection for most peripherals on all manner of computers.

USB ConnectorsUSB plug. ->

Microsoft DE-9 socket to Bus pins adapter.
Microsoft DE-9 socket plug to Bus 9-pins plug adapter on a 10" cord

Microsoft DE-9 socket to Bus pins adapter.
Microsoft mouse adapter from DE-9 socket to Bus pins on a cord.

Earlier, Microsoft produced complicated block serial to bus adapters for its "Dove bar" mouse.

Bus mouse plug.D-ring and 9 pins round bus mouse plug which plugs into the port on a mouse bus card installed inside the PC.

DE-9 to PS/2 adapter
DE-9 socket to PS/2 socket adapter

Mouse PS/2 plug
Mouse PS/2 plug

PS/2 mouse port on a computer
PS/2 mouse port on a computer following Microsoft's PC 97 standardization in 1997 of a green port for the mouse plug.

PS/2 socket end
PS/2 end of a Logitech PS/2 socket to DE-9 socket adapter.