Universal Docks Are USB Devices
- Posted in: Tech Talk
When I first started using a universal dock even I, the DocKtor, had trouble getting my head around the difference between using an old-fangled snap-in proprietary dock (sometimes called a "port replicator" - example below) and using a "universal dock"/. This wiki (http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Universal_port_replicator) is pretty good at explaining the difference, but it is important to remember that a universal dock is actually a "USB Device" containing its own hardware devices for external graphics monitors, GbE, and audio input/output in addition to port replication for external USB 2.0 and USB 3.0 SuperSpeed hub ports. This is why it comes with DisplayLink software as shown in the Programs and Features and the Device Manager. Keeping this in mind will help you realize the "universality" of the dock and the reasons why you have to initially load software for it to work. I won't get too salesy on you by explaining that universal docks work with about any PC, MacBook, or Win 8 Pro slate, so you don't have to go out and buy a new dock every time you upgrade your device.