Ask for help: Mac Pro3,1(MA970) front USB fail

Discussion in 'Mac Pro' started by gugule, Jul 13, 2015.

  1. gugule macrumors member


    Jan 14, 2014
    Mac Pro3,1(MA970) 2008 early
    The two front USB ports fail. I plug a udisk to one of them, but the mac doesn't respond. I plug a mouse to one of them, doesn't either. If I plug the udisk and the mouse to the back USB ports, they works.
    The front USB ports are soldered on the front panel module, and they are linked to a port on the mainboard by a cable. I have taken off the front panel module and installed it on another mac, it works perfectly and the two USB ports work well. The USB cable is good as well. So I think the USB ports on the mainboard is broken.
    There are two similar ports on the mainboard near the USB port, but the text beside on the mainboard is 'SATA'. So I don't think the USB wire can be linked to those ports.
    Has anyone met this problem? How did you solve it?
    If there is another USB port on the mainboard, it will be wonderful.
    USB port 1-0.jpg
  2. ActionableMango macrumors G3


    Sep 21, 2010
    I'm not familiar with the 3,1 Mac Pro, but I'd be surprised if there are spare USB connectors on the main board.

    On the other hand, there are plenty of USB PCIe cards that have internal USB connectors on them. So theoretically you could get one of those and hook up the front panel USB to it, but there are some things that would worry me:

    1) You need to get a card with a chipset compatible with OS X drivers.
    2) The cable from the front module of a MP 3,1 might not be standard USB pinout (I wouldn't know).
    3) Even if it is the right pinout, it's probably not long enough to go from the front module to the PCIe area, so you'll need a longer internal-style USB cable too.
  3. crjackson2134 macrumors 601


    Mar 6, 2013
    Charlotte, NC
    Do you have another OS you can boot to for testing? I've seen it a couple of times where it wasn't a hardware failure at all.
  4. gugule thread starter macrumors member


    Jan 14, 2014
    Yes, I have tested the USB ports in Mac OS X 10.7.5. Unfortunately, the result is same.
  5. gugule thread starter macrumors member


    Jan 14, 2014
    Thank you for your reply and advice.
    It seems that it is a little difficult to fix the problem. But I will try.

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4 July 13, 2015