what is a usb header on a motherboard

Everything about USB Header on Motherboard (its location and usage methods in 2022)

Ever found yourself running out of USB ports on your computer? Are you tired of swapping your devices continuously because of the lack of USB ports?

Then you have come to the right place. This article is all about the question “What is a USB header on a motherboard” and how to conveniently utilize it for your ease.

USB headers are tiny parts on your motherboard that connect the motherboard to establish a connection with external USB devices.

In short, they allow you to have additional functional USB ports on your computer in addition to the ones pre-existing on your computer’s case.

They are very simple to use and just require a USB port with a cable, once connected they are ready to be used. But before getting into how to use them, let’s dig into some details about them.

What Is A Usb Header On A Motherboard And How To Locate It?

USB headers are tiny clips or ports on the motherboard that are used in case the user wishes to connect the motherboard with additional functional USB ports.

There are different types of USB headers and each one differs in its physical appearance and speed. 

However, it is fairly simple to locate them on your motherboard. You can locate them either simply by opening the casing of your computer and looking for them on the motherboard. They are labeled as F_USBx where “x” is the type of the USB port. 

In addition to physical inspection, you can also look for the USB headers in the motherboard’s manual. It provides a complete chart of the motherboard including all the headers in it with labeling.

Different Types Of USB Headers

As you may already know, there are various kinds of USB ports, correspondingly, there are different headers for different ports as well. 

To keep it simple, there are essentially 4 types of headers according to the following types of USBs.

  • USB 2.0
  • USB 3.0
  • USB 3.1
  • USB 3.2

So according to the user requirement, the USB ports must be connected to their compatible headers, or else the ports will not function

From the above mentioned, the USB 2.0 and 3.0 headers are the most common. The USB 2.0 header is for the USB 2.0 ports and similarly, 3.0 headers are for USB 3.0 ports.

Apart from the visual difference, almost all the USB ports differ mostly in their transfer speeds with the USB 2.0 ports being the slowest having 0.5 Gbps, and the USB 3.2 being the fastest with almost 20 Gbps speed.

How To Connect  A USB Header To A USB Port

Here is how you can perform the deed, 

  • It is very simple and straightforward to connect the header with a port. If you have bought a new computer, it should have come with USB cables as well. If not, you can purchase the USB cables along with a panel of ports you wish to connect.
  • Once you have that panel along with the cable ready, first unscrew one of the unused panels from the rear end of your casing and insert the panel with the USB ports in it. 
  • When that is done, simply plug the cable from the panel into the USB header on the motherboard. 
  • You will need to look for the correct header, for a USB 2.0 port, the header is a small 9-pin plug while for the USB 3.0 port, the header is bigger and has 19 pins arranged in a 9×10 arrangement.
  • Once you have the header connected, just double-check the screws and the cables and you are good to turn on the pc and start using those extra ports.


To sum it all up, the USB headers come in handy when the user opts to get some extra ports connected to the computer. 

However, it should be kept in mind that every header supports a specific port and if that compatibility is not accounted for, the header will not work.

This is my detailed answer to “What is a USB header on a motherboard” and hence conclude my article here. I hope that the article had everything you were looking for and proves to be useful for all the readers.


Q. Not enough USB headers on the motherboard?

Ans. If you have used up all your ports and the headers as well. You can buy cards that have additional USB ports. You just need to plug them into your motherboard like a graphics card and they should be good to go.

q. how many Motherboard USB header types Are there?

Ans. There are 4 types of USB header types:
USB 2.0 header
USB 3.0 header 
USB 3.1 header
USB 3.2 header

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