Regardless of whether you are interfaced to your radio, for Rig Control, using a direct USB from the radio to the computer or using a USB/Serial converter, this procedure will identify the COM Port/s used by your radio. Once the drivers for the device are installed we need to determine the COM Port that has been assigned by Windows. To do this, make sure your USB cable is now connected between the radio and the computer. Turn your radio ON. We can now open our Windows Device Manager and locate the Port# the radio is connected to.


For Windows 10 users: right-click on the "Start" button (Little Window button in lower left corner on the task bar). When the menu opens select "Device Manager". You could also open the Windows Control Panel and locate and open the "Device Manager"


For other versions of Windows: navigate to your Device Manager by clicking on the "Start" button, then RIGHT-CLICK on "Computer" and select "Properties". In the upper left corner of the Properties screen, click on "Device Manager". You could also open the Windows Control Panel and locate and open the "Device Manager" 


In the list of devices in the Device Manager, locate the hive called "Ports (COM & LPT)" (#1 above) and double-Left click on it to open it.


Once the "Ports" hive is open, you will see one or more Com Ports listed. If you have more than one Com Port showing, make a note of all the port numbers. Then, the easiest way to determine which one is connected to the radio you are attempting to connect, just follow the USB cable from the radio back to the computer. Unplug that cable from the computer and the Com Port that is being used will disappear from the list. Plug the cable back in and the Com Port being used will reappear.


With many of today's modern radios that connect via a USB cable, when the drivers are installed, two Com Ports are created. In the image above, the driver for an Icom IC-7100 has created 2 Silicon Labs ports. If you have two or more radios that require two Com Ports, the Com Ports for the ports for each radio should be numbered sequentially (3 and 4, 5 and 6, etc.). You can locate the port combination that's connected to the radio you are adding in the same manner as explained above.  The pair of ports connected to that radio will "disappear" from the Device Manager when the cable is unplugged Plug the USB cable back in, and the pair of ports will re-appear.


If no COM ports disappear or re-appear when the USB cable is unplugged from the computer and plug it back in, this indicates either the device driver is not installed, installed incorrectly or in some way not recognized by Windows then you need to contact the device manufacturer for assistance with installing the proper drivers for the device.


Now that you know which port/ports your radio is connected to, make a note of the COM Port number that reappeared when you plugged the USB cable back in.  For those with 2 COM Ports, make a note of what the "STANDARD" port number is.  You will need to know the ports in the next step to connecting your radio.


Identifying The Device Driver Manufacturer

Once you have identified the COM Port used by the radio, it is sometimes necessary to identify the USB/Serial converter manufacturer when it is not obvious in the name of the port such as when the Silicon Labs device converter and drivers are used.


To identify the manufacturer and driver programmers, left click on the port that's connected to the radio to highlight it. Once highlighted, right-click and select "Properties" from the context menu. The manufacturer of the USB/Serial converter and driver is shown on the Properties page as shown below.