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Mach2/3 Hardware requirements?
« on: July 23, 2006, 09:22:35 PM »
I'm literally ready to purchase the license tonite but I have a question.

I've been running TurboCNC to this point mainly because I had an old 120mHz Pentium laptop running DOS. it finally died. I'm driving a HobbyCNC controller on a bench mill and it has served me well.

I picked up another laptop with a 400mHz PII, it's an HP Omnibook XE2. I loaded XP SP2 on it and Mach2. I configured Mach2 this weekend, tweaked the backlash settings. I left most of the defaults except for my required port configuration. I've been using it all weekend mainly jogging and MDI entries. I use OneCNC and have posted a few files but they are over the 1000 line limit for the demo. Anyway, everything seems to be working just fine, no apparent missed steps, I tuned the motor settings about %20 below the point where they no longer stalled. There is nothing else installed on the laptop, it's dedicated to this purpose, I sneakernet the files on a memory stick.

Is there any reason that I should be concerned that the laptop I'm using is insufficient for the application? Can I expect Mach3 to perform similarly? I'm happy with Mach2, it  does all that I need it to do, I was wary to try Mach3 in case it might have some instabilities with the hardware, at least until I hear otherwise.  I've got some jobs to run this week and I'm ready to 'Buy Now' Otherwise it's back to Turbocnc.
Re: Mach2/3 Hardware requirements?
« Reply #1 on: July 23, 2006, 09:44:56 PM »
Mach3 may be to much for that computer :( But you can test it if you like :) Mach2 and 3 can be on the same computer ...


Hope that helps
Brian
Fixing problems one post at a time ;)

www.newfangledsolutions.com
www.machsupport.com
Re: Mach2/3 Hardware requirements?
« Reply #2 on: August 11, 2006, 01:12:06 AM »
Brian,
I have an 800MHz Pentium 3 running Windows XP Pro SP2, will Mach 3 run OK on that? Can't remember how much RAM it's got, I think 500MB, maybe less.
I would prefer not to have to strip down Windows as suggested on the Mach site, so the alternative is I could create a dual boot with Windows 98 version 2 and run Mach 3 on that.
Any comments on that scenario?

Thanks,
Dave.  :)

Mach3 may be to much for that computer :( But you can test it if you like :) Mach2 and 3 can be on the same computer ...


Hope that helps
Brian

Re: Mach2/3 Hardware requirements?
« Reply #3 on: August 11, 2006, 09:08:19 AM »
Art told me in an email that Mach 3 really needs a minimum of 1gHz CPU.
Re: Mach2/3 Hardware requirements?
« Reply #4 on: August 13, 2006, 07:25:45 AM »
Bummer,
I just checked my computer and it's actually a Pentium 3 running at 600MHz, so I guess that won't do!
I already have two computers and don't fancy spending on another! Looks like Mach software is out of the running then.

Cheers,
Dave.  :(

Art told me in an email that Mach 3 really needs a minimum of 1gHz CPU.
Re: Mach2/3 Hardware requirements?
« Reply #5 on: August 13, 2006, 09:20:02 AM »
Dave, don't throw out the baby with the bath water. Just run Mach2 like I'm doing. the license is good for either so if you happen across another laptop, you can move up.

Mach2 runs great on the 400mHz HP that I have, paid $150 delivered for it. I've got a used Compaq 2gHz I paid $350 and it was such a nice laptop and a step up for me, I couldn't sacrafice it to the garage.

Mach2 is pretty well debugged so that is to your advantage as well. A big step up for me over TurboCNC :)


Bummer,
I just checked my computer and it's actually a Pentium 3 running at 600MHz, so I guess that won't do!
I already have two computers and don't fancy spending on another! Looks like Mach software is out of the running then.

Cheers,
Dave. :(

Art told me in an email that Mach 3 really needs a minimum of 1gHz CPU.
Re: Mach2/3 Hardware requirements?
« Reply #6 on: August 14, 2006, 05:14:18 AM »
Thanks for the note Rusty,
I have downloaded Mach 2 and I'll load it onto the garage (er, I mean workshop) PC and have a play with it - unfortunately it's going to be some time before I get all CNCd up, but who knows - I may have a faster PC by the time I get it all done.

I e-mailed Art off line earlier and he says he has heard of people running Mach 2 on 400MHz machines so it should be OK on my 600MHz. By the way - I asked about running it under Windows 98 but he says it only runs under XP.

Cheers,
Dave. :)

Dave, don't throw out the baby with the bath water. Just run Mach2 like I'm doing. the license is good for either so if you happen across another laptop, you can move up.

Mach2 runs great on the 400mHz HP that I have, paid $150 delivered for it. I've got a used Compaq 2gHz I paid $350 and it was such a nice laptop and a step up for me, I couldn't sacrafice it to the garage.

Mach2 is pretty well debugged so that is to your advantage as well. A big step up for me over TurboCNC :)


Bummer,
I just checked my computer and it's actually a Pentium 3 running at 600MHz, so I guess that won't do!
I already have two computers and don't fancy spending on another! Looks like Mach software is out of the running then.

Cheers,
Dave. :(

Art told me in an email that Mach 3 really needs a minimum of 1gHz CPU.
Re: Mach2/3 Hardware requirements?
« Reply #7 on: September 08, 2006, 05:15:52 PM »
My steppers require 1300 steps for per mm of movement . What will be the maximum speed  with a 1.7 ghz cpu speed ? By the way I have noticed that  the toolpath display uses too much  CPU speed (particularly with the  new toolpath display in jog follow  mode ) . Even the display is turned off  Mach3 says " generating toolpath" when a new g-code is loaded .It should be  a way to turn  the display off .

Rceebuilder
Re: Mach2/3 Hardware requirements?
« Reply #8 on: October 24, 2006, 12:14:56 PM »
I've been running mach3 on a P3 355mhz for the past few months on my mill.  Milled all my parts for my 4x8' router mill with my geared head mill machine running mach 3 on this machine..  Mill used Jeff's conversion plans and power supply from camitronics, servos, gecko controllers

Although this machine has a Clean load of windows 2000 sp2 and Mach.  That is ALL I have on the machine.  So perhaps the key is not to be taxing the machine with to much extra to do...  This machine does not have any connection to a network and has never seen the internet either....  I think this is important to prevent a windows machine from doing something unexpected (ie slowing down) when being used in this application.

Perhaps mach 3 would cut bearing pockets smoother with more processor.  But I'm pretty happy with the way it works..

Although I've found I'm limited to 150ipm fast rates on the larger mill for jogging so that is a problem that needs a cure..

But it can run on slower machines in my opinion.

Now I would not try to run it on my P3 upstairs that is loaded down with all sorts of overhead junk..

b.