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  1.    #1  
    I had a couple of problems when I originally tried to install my BT dongle, as Microsoft wanted to install its driver instead of the real driver for the dongle. Long and the short of it is, each install took the next highest Com port. It is now at COM16. Seeing as none of the com ports between com4 and com15 aren't used, is there any way to reclaim them?
  2. #2  
    There is nothing to reclaim. You haven't lost anything.
    It just picked an arbitrarily high address so as to be less likely to ever conflict with any other real or virtual serial ports. It may have also created another virtual serial port in the neighborhood of 10 -12. Some devices set up two ports, one for outgoing, one for incoming.

    If you for example, installed a real serial card and the real hardware used the addresses and irq of "COM2" then you'll have a COM2 simple as that. It's only because the virtual driver is way off on COM16 that the address space for COM2 is free of conflicts and available for real hardware or less clever legacy apps & virtual serial drivers that need to use the lower adresses. If the Infrared port wants to pretend to be a serial port on COM7, it can.

    XP after SP2 includes a bluetooth stack which is a little better in some ways but worse in many more. The XP SP2 driver works fine for syncing, hardly anything else.
    To get the full functionality until MS improves their driver, uninstall the device and rename this file:
    to something else (bth.bak) and reinstall with the WIDCOMM drivers that came on the CD. If it still installs the win drivers, use device manager to "update driver" and in that dialog use the "don't search" and "have disk" options.
    Brian K. White  --  --
    filePro BBx  Linux SCO  Prosper/FACTS AutoCAD  #callahans Satriani
  3.    #3  
    For those who have the same issue: I figured out how to reclaim the used com ports. I do call it reclaiming, because some software isn't intellegent enough to understand what Com18: is.

    If you go to the hardware properties of a serial port, it gives you the option to change the serieal port. The reserved serial ports will show up as used, but you can select them anyway. Windows will stop you to verify if you select a reserved serial port, but you can click past it. Once changed, you can change it back, and the serial port will no longer be reserved.

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