moderated Re: JAWS 2021 and Pac Mate Omni BX 400 vis USB

Milton Ota



That sounds great that you found the mini USB port on the left side of the PacMate display.


I think you are mis-reading the text that display when you connect the display to the computer.


It should read: pm display 40 3.70


That is the latest and last update that was available for the firmware of the PacMate display.


Now, we need to be sure of the problem why JAWS is not starting with your PacMate display.


First, you should make sure that no other braille display is connected to the computer, some may say this is not necessary but I found this to help by disconnecting my Focus and then getting JAWS to recognize the PacMate display.


Let go into the JAWS menu by pressing and holding down the JAWS key/Insert key and the letter J.


Now press the letter L or using the down arrow key, select Braille Display.


Make sure that you have focus on the PacMate display and confirm that you are using the USB port for the display.


You may need to go to modify setting by tabbing over and opening that choice.


Make sure that you set it as the default display and tab to OK. You should then be prompted to restart JAWS, and I hope you have a shortcut key for starting JAWS.


If you would like further help, live in the 48 continental states, I’m in Central time and will be available for a tandem session and phone call after 1:30 PM today.





From: <> On Behalf Of Dan Miner via
Sent: Sunday, January 10, 2021 5:20 PM
Subject: Re: JAWS 2021 and Pac Mate Omni BX 400 vis USB


I have indeed finally found a mini USB port on the left side just under the insertions guide.    JAWS is now keeping it as my default but it seems to be failing to load the braille driver.


The display itself shows on power-up:

pm display  40  - k70


USB device info from device manager.

LibUSB-1.0: FreedomScientific [PAC Mate]

Device type:  libusb (WinUSB) devices

Manufacturer:  libusb 1.0

Device status  multi line  This device is working properly.


I found a few mentions that the Focus USB driver would work which is what I have installed as a USB driver at the moment.






From: <> On Behalf Of Milton Ota
Sent: Sunday, January 10, 2021 5:50 AM
Subject: Re: JAWS 2021 and Pac Mate Omni BX 400 vis USB


Okay, have you looked on the left side of the display for a mini usb port?


When you plug the display to the Pacmate what version of the display is shown?


These are questions Freedom Scientific Support will ask so you should check these things out.


This is just a suggestion to figure out the problem.



From: <> On Behalf Of Dan Miner via
Sent: Saturday, January 9, 2021 9:55 PM
Subject: Re: JAWS 2021 and Pac Mate Omni BX 400 vis USB


They are still clipped together.  I’ve been searching the BX manual and didn’t see any option to run the display without the PDA part.  A quick examination of the display only section doesn’t suggest it would support running completely stand-alone as I see no USB type A or mini B port.  The display is working with the PDA part which is running 6.2 of the environment but I haven’t figured out how to update it since I don’t have any way of connecting CF cards to my system to prepare one for an upgrade path.


I figured they would flatly deny support since it is so old.  This came from an era of proprietary  USB protocols so I am expecting to need some sort of USB driver.


I did manage to find it in the Device Manager in control panel.  It’s listed under Other Devices under its name but doesn’t know much about it and says there is no driver for it.


“Device status: The drivers for this device are not installed. (Code 28)”




From: <> On Behalf Of Richard Turner
Sent: Saturday, January 9, 2021 3:14 PM
Subject: Re: JAWS 2021 and Pac Mate Omni BX 400 vis USB


Have you separated the display from the note taker? 

My guess is the display is too old to be supported, but you may need to call FS on Monday. 




"You know," said Arthur, "it's at times like this, when I'm trapped in a Vogon airlock with a man from Betelgeuse, and about to die of asphyxiation in deep space, that I really wish I'd listened to what my mother told me when I was young."

"Why, what did she tell you?"

"I don't know, I didn't listen."

-- Douglas Adams, The Hitchhiker's Guide To The Galaxy


On Jan 9, 2021, at 2:07 PM, Milton Ota <mota1252@...> wrote:



I would check to see what is going on with your USB port in the device manager in Windows 10. Let me know if you need help finding the device manager.



From: <> On Behalf Of Dan Miner via
Sent: Saturday, January 9, 2021 12:18 AM
Subject: JAWS 2021 and Pac Mate Omni BX 400 vis USB


Someone gave me this braille display and I’ve managed to get it up and running as far as the Windows mobile usage is concerned.  But I really want to be able to do braille display of my desktop PC running Windows 10.  I have it connected via USB but the computer doesn’t seem to acknowledge it from what I can tell.  The device is running off the power from the port and I know the cable works as I use it for my old Book Port Plus.

I’ve tried to tell JAWS that a Pac Mate is there in the braille settings by adding a display but it just never selects it (keeps switching back to no display).    As I’m on Windows 10, ActiveSync install is impossible (stopped support at XP).  And google has failed me so far for any details other that the ActiveSync companion CD had some USB driver bundled with it for the device.  No sign of that driver either.


It just seems to be such a waste for a usable braille display that  is still serviceable as a hosted display if the PDA part is not so useful now.


Any pointers would be appreciated.



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