problem with parallel Hardware Key on Laptop

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I'm having trouble with a hardware key on my parallel port, and would
like to disable power management of the parallel port in XPsp2.

I talked to tech support of the program, and Tech's say it is in
laptops.  I've tried another laptop, same problem.  The laptops
monitor the parallel  ports for activity, and then turn it off.  When
the program checks for the Key, it gives me an error, Key Not Found.

I've got no BIOS settings for power management, and under Control
Panel -> Power Options -> , i've tried all the different power
management schemes.

Does anyone know of a program that may help bypass this? Or some
settings in XP?  Are USB ports also monitored for power use, or are
they always on?  

I was thinking of making a connector with an LED on it, from the +5v
pin to ground, or I wonder if a null connector would work, something
like a loop-back connector for testing the port.


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