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I have some arduino mini pro collecting environment data, so they operate a long time collecting and I need to connect Gnd - Rx - Tx once in a while to transfer data to my PC, and then disconnect.

I have read some comments here and I know it can be dangerous for the circuit, but can't find a practical solution.

Is there any practical recomendation / recipe to do this ?

I am wondering:

  1. Keep power source connected, then connect in order gnd - rx - tx using three cables, then disconnect in the oposite order.

  2. Use a USB connection with gnd - rx - tx (no Vcc) to connect and disconnect.

  3. Disconnect Vcc from the external power source, then connect gnd - tx - rx, then Vcc from external power source.

  4. ¿ Any recipe / recommendation ?

Thanks in advance.

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  • \$\begingroup\$ I use 1 arduino mini with two temperature and humidity sensors and one photocell, it stores the information in a 512Kb EEPROM, its power source is a wallwart - really a kindle adaptor. Once each month I have to connect my PC via an arduino UNO to get the data and store in my PC, in this moment there are two connections: the wallwart and the arduino UNO. I have 5 "sensor modules". Really appreciate your help. \$\endgroup\$ – Gcarom Nov 27 '14 at 15:18
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An answer to this really requires some more information about your data collection system. Is it designed to be able to be powered from the host USB +5V connection?

If so then the proper operation of the target device demands that there be an appropriately designed circuit to gracefully switch between the external power and the host USB 5V power.

If you have the data collection device properly designed with decent bypass capacitors in place along with a good ground system then it should not be a problem to plug and unplug the device whilst its external power is applied. This scenario is not any different than when you plug an externally powered USB hub up to your computer.

I would discourage you from making a setup that demands use of a USB cable that has had it's +5V wire cut. Someday you or someone else will forget and plug in the device with just any handy USB cable and then damage may ensue.

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