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First of all, we connected our usb plug to arduino board (starter kit). After that, we completed Project 1 successfully (circuit with led and switch.) We tried unplug the usb cable, but it was very difficult, we had to pull very hard, but we couldn't unplug it. Finally, I managed to take it away with the help of my partner. I was pulling the usb and my partner was keeping the arduino board stable. The result wasn't very nice, we probably broke the usb cable. You can see what I mean in these images, the metallic coating part of the cable is still stuck on the board.

https://ibb.co/6wtf02J

https://ibb.co/4pZg2w0

https://ibb.co/WPchtgN

https://ibb.co/gPHZYnt

Nevertheless, we put the remaining cable back where it was, and the board seems to be working normally.

My question is if it safe to use it. Is there any chance of electrical damage or something like that?

Thank you!

P.S. In addition, we are planning to buy a new arduino starter kit. How can we avoid this problem with the new board?

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    And shield from the usb plug can't be pulled out now? I don't think it's a dealbreaker, maybe just some ultra cheap cable..
    – KIIV
    Feb 22 at 16:25
  • Yes, it can't be pulled out. Maybe we could try with pliers, but I think we shouldn't, I believe if we do, we could probably damage the inside of the board. If it is safe to use it this way, we are willing to keep the shield inside the arduino usb port.
    – zch
    Feb 22 at 16:35
  • at most you can damage usb connector.. Maybe a little squeeze in the middle (just a little in weakest place). Anyway usb connector can be replaced, if you don't destroy something else
    – KIIV
    Feb 22 at 16:47
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    @KIIV, was considering making an answer to this, but with your second comment you seem to be covering everything I'd say anyway. So it makes sense that if it's to be answered, it would be by you rather than me. I'd tack my own thoughts into a comment if there's anything to add beyond what you say.
    – timemage
    Feb 22 at 16:49
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Without the center part of the USB plug, it should be possible to make some deformations of that shield without damaging rest of the usb connector and pull it out. Aim for the weakest spot - seam (usually in the middle of bottom).

But even if you damage on board connector, it can be replaced (but it might be better to give it to someone with soldering experience - at least for unsoldering it)

And as noted in comments, even without working usb connector it can be programmed either by connecting USB-TTL serial converter to D0/D1 (but without auto-reset, unless you provide 100nF capacitor between reset and RTS), or it can be programmed by another Arduino as SPI (it needs bit more wires, and by default it doesn't burn bootloader, so if you fix USB, you'll have to burn bootloader). Easier might be swapping Atmega328p between boards, however it needs some practice, so you won't bend or rip pins)

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  • One thing I had to add is just that in the meantime until fixing it, it's unlikely the USB cable shield sitting in the USB jack will cause any actual electrical problem. So, it could powered by the barrel jack and programmed by a USB->TTL serial converter via D0 and D1, until it is fixed.
    – timemage
    Feb 22 at 17:01

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