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I accidentally plugged my USB mouse into my eSata port… it works?

My father bought a nice USB-gadget for me and wanted to demonstrate it to me. So he plugged it in as I wasn't at home. Unfortunately he has plugged it into the eSATA-jack and not into the USB-jack. I didn't see it for quite a while and the gadget and the notebook was running fine for hours (although the USB-gadget was plugged into eSATA).

Does anybody know if this can be done without being potentionally harmful?

(I'm very astonished that it hasn't done harm and even more surprised as it has worked. Pressing plugs into jacks which shouldn't be put there feels wrong to me.)

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marked as duplicate by Linker3000, sblair, random Aug 2 '11 at 0:39

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up vote 11 down vote accepted

I believe that most of the newer eSATA jacks also act as USB jacks. On my Dell E6400 that is the case. The shape of the opening is slightly different to accommodate both.

http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/ESATA/USB

enter image description here

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+1 Excellent answer, I did not even know they existed. That would explain why it worked in the first place as I was scratching my head on that one too, at first. en.wikipedia.org/wiki/ESATA/USB#SATA-IO (search combo). –  KCotreau Aug 1 '11 at 22:53
    
Whoa! Never seen one of those before. –  Brad Aug 1 '11 at 22:56
    
Yup, the Dells have had this for a couple of years now. –  surfasb Aug 2 '11 at 0:06

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