Computer Hardware Terms, Glossary and Dictionary
Parallel port, also called a female connector, is a socket on a computer for transmitting data in parallel, or more than one bit at a time. There may be 8, 16, or 36 channels; each channel carries one bit of information, so eight channels would be used to transmit one eight-bit byte at a time. Not all the channels are used for data; some may be used for control signals. Parallel port connects a computer with an external device such as a printer. Most personal computers have both a parallel port and at least one serial port. On PCs, the parallel port uses a 25-pin connector (type DB-25) and is used to connect printers, computers and other devices that need relatively high bandwidth.