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Messages - MosaicDave

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1
Okay so actually we found the solution to our issue today.  Well it was a dumb thing; this post is just for the benefit of anybody else later on that runs into this situation.

It turned out, that for some reason, our new Windows 7 computer was booting up with "Num Lock" turned on.  So the numeric pad keys did nothing without Shift pressed (since windows was getting numbers instead).  With Shift pressed, the numeric pad keys then I suppose were outputting the codes for the arrow directions, making jog work at slow speed.

Our keyboard has no "Num Lock" light, so there was no easy way to know.  We decided today to start up the Win7 on-screen keyboard to check, and sure enough Num Lock was set.

I know we ran into this issue once before a year or two ago, and it ended up mysteriously fixing itself, without me ever understanding why it happened, or why it got better.

Well maybe I have learned something today!

Thanks again--

--dave

2
Hi all--

I'm having problems with jogging that I can't quite understand, so here I am.

I've had the following system, working mostly okay, for several years:

    -- A vanilla desktop PC running Windows XP SP3, with 4GB of memory.
    -- Mach3, Version R3.043.062
    -- Ethernet SmoothStepper
    -- ESS plugin version ESS-M3-170328-u4-f1-H
    -- Gecko G540

I've had occasional problems with inexplicable errors within Mach3, and have tried unsuccessfully to diagnose these through the Mach3 and Warp9 forums.  Recently I've decided that I suspect the PC's Ethernet port as being somehow a little flaky and intermittent, so I have opted to replace the machine with something better.

So, we bought a new computer.  It's a bare-bones Shuttle box; we've put a 4 GHz i3 processor in it, 8 GB of memory, a 250GB SSD, and Windows 7 Ultimate 64 bit.  Over the past couple of days we've assembled and initialized this machine, installed Mach3 and the SmoothStepper driver, and installed the same profile as we had been using on the XP machine.  By the way the XP machine is still here for reference, and running mostly fine as before.

Now, I had expected that, once we got the W7 machine running with the same Mach3 profile as the XP machine, that it would behave the same way.  And mostly it does.  But, something's different, and I can't figure out what's wrong.

With the W7 machine, I can load a G-code program and run it, and everything behaves just as it would have on the XP machine.

But, jogging is somehow not right.

We've always used the keyboard numeric keypad arrow keys for jogging.  With the XP machine, pressing just the arrow keys by themselves, the machine will jog at a reduced speed; I think I have this set to 5% of maximum from within the little flyout window that pops in from the right when you press "Tab".  Pressing Shift + arrow keys, the machine will jog at full maximum speed.  And, when pressing control + arrow keys, the machine will jog in 0.001" increments - again an increment that I defined in the "Tab" popup window.

Now on the W7 machine, I remind, we're using the exact same Mach3 profile.  But jogging isn't working the same:  Pressing just the arrow keys by themselves, the machine seems to do nothing; no motion at all.  Pressing Shift + arrow keys, the machine will jog at what seems like the 5% reduced speed.  And when pressing Control + arrow keys, the machine will move in 0.001" increments, same as it should.

Okay so my question: Can anyone explain this situation to me?  It seems clear to me, that there must be some Mach3 parameters that are not stored in the profile, but rather somewhere else.  But I can't figure out where.  And, I can't figure out where to configure the behavior, when pressing the arrow keys with and without the Control and Shift modifiers.

Any help, I would greatly appreciate!

Thanks--

-- Perplexed in Pennsylvania (a.k.a. Dave)

3
Mach4 General Discussion / Re: G-Code for Mach4 vs. Mach3
« on: July 17, 2018, 04:19:51 PM »
Okay everyone, just to say for now, thanks very much for the replies.

--dave

4
Mach4 General Discussion / G-Code for Mach4 vs. Mach3
« on: July 12, 2018, 10:43:34 PM »
Hi All--

I'm in the process of transitioning (or trying to) from Mach3 to Mach4.

My CAM package (CamBam) has a postprocessor for Mach3 built in, but none for Mach4.

Is Mach4's interpretation of G-Code identical to that of Mach3?  So that my current CamBam Mach3 postprocessor will generate code that will run under Mach4 without issues?

Or would you all recommend that I use the Fanuc postprocessor (which CamBam also has) instead?

Thanks--

--dave

5
Bryanna--

By the way:  About the "Static GUI" shortcut you noticed.  I'm not sure how that got onto the desktop.  After we reinstalled everything this morning, it was no longer there.  Then out of curiosity, Bryce (here) found the shortcut again with the normal Win7 search, and inadvertently dragged it to the desktop.  So now it's back on the desktop, and we have no idea where it came from originally.  Or, what it is supposed to do.  But, anyway it seems to be something that we don't really need?

--dave

6
Hi again Bryanna--

Thanks for steering us in the correct direction, which by the way is what you've done.

I put an Nvidia graphics card with 1GB of memory into the machine, and now Mach4 seems to start normally.  I wouldn't have guessed that it was the PC's onboard graphics capabilities that was blocking things up, but so it was.

Well now on to getting a profile for my machine, etc.

Thanks again--

--dave

7
Hi Bryanna--

We're not using a video card - just the onboard, built-in graphics capabilities of the motherboard.  So it's the Intel G41 chipset, with the stock Intel driver.  Which seems to be working completely fine for everything else; the machine is very quick and snappy and responsive, in every way.  Except Mach4 won't run.

--dave

8
Hi Bryanna--

Thanks for your reply.  My colleague who is trying to get Mach4 up and running initiated this thread from my computer here yesterday; I'm jumping in now just to add some clarifications and detail:

First, what we're doing generally, is trying to migrate to Mach4, since our current Mach3 system isn't reliable enough for us currently, despite my heroic attempts to tweak, optimize, debug, and stabilize it, over many months, going on a couple of years now.

So as to not tamper with the current Mach3 setup (which is making parts now even as I type this post), we're bringing up Mach4 on a separate computer.  It's maybe a little dated, but it has an Intel Core2Duo processor running at 3.16 GHz, and it's got 4GB of memory, so I believe this should be more than adequate for Mach4.  Also, we've installed a 120GB SanDisk SSD in the machine, which is formatted as just a single partition, because I'm trying to minimize file system latency, just based on the long saga of unreliability I've gone through with Mach3.  Anyway so I think this machine ought to work well for Mach4.

We've just installed a clean copy of Window 7 64-bit.  Then the Win7 Service Pack 1; then the chipset driver; then the graphics, Ethernet, and Audio drivers, so the motherboard has a complete set of drivers.

Then we've installed "Mach4 Hobby".  I've set it to run as an Administrator, as you suggested.

Also I've disabled Windows Firewall, as well as Windows Defender, which would be the only antivirus-like thing on this system at this point.

When we run Mach4GUI.exe and then select the Mach4Mill default profile, a progress bar appears, and advances maybe 2/3 of the way across; above it it first says (something like) "Loading Screen Elements", and then "Connecting Tool Paths".  At this point the program crashes, heads off into debug-report land, and freezes, so I have to use the task manager to kill the process.

This morning, we completely repartitioned the SSD and reinstalled everything again from scratch, but it just leads to this same exact result.

Any suggestions??

Thanks--

--dave

9
Mach4 General Discussion / Re: Mach 4
« on: July 11, 2018, 03:26:32 PM »
Hey Joe,

I am trying to download Mach 4 onto Windows 7 3.16 GHZ 4GB SSD, but when running Mach 4 I am getting a debugging error. I have tried suppressing the report and continuing with the report generation, but either way, the Mach 4 freezes and will not continue passed this point. Any suggestions? I will attach the debugging report.

10
Mach4 General Discussion / Mach 4 to Windows 7 : Debug Report Crash
« on: July 11, 2018, 02:12:24 PM »
I am transitioning to Mach 4 using Windows 7 SSD 3.16GHZ 4GB memory, and I am getting this debugging report. I have tried to suppress and follow through with the report, but the Mach 4 Demo freezes and will not continue loading. The computer I am running it on does not have an internet connection.

Thank You

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