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PC Lockup with Mach3
« on: July 19, 2009, 10:31:24 PM »
this week after trying to actually cut something on my newly built machine i found that while in mach3 and running the g-code the computer would randomly lock and only a hard power cycle would bring it back. i started doing some research and seen the xp optimization doc, so i reformatted the computer and installed xp pro as a standard pc. once i reinstalled the pc and all the basic drivers to function i installed mach3 and tried cutting again, well it locked up 2 different times. if i have mach3 closed and just in the os i have left it on overnight and no lockups.

can someone point me to any fix or suggestions? or should i reinstall vista 32bit and try that?

the pc was my workstation that i just upgraded from so i know it is known good, it is a p4 3.4mhz with 4gig memory.


thanks
James

Offline jimpinder

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Re: PC Lockup with Mach3
« Reply #1 on: July 20, 2009, 03:16:38 AM »
When you say the "computer" locks up - do you mean the computer, or is it Mach that locks up.

Check your GCode - or try running something so simple that you can see it is right.

I have been writing GCode over the last week, and the favorite thing that locks up Mach is silly errors in the code.
This is particularly apparent when using subroutines, if you have misnamed it, or not put in a  return command.

Errors usually get picked up as you enter the program. Mach runs through the entire program and gives you the tool path pciture. Do you get as far as that, without anything appearing in the comments window.
 
I take it, other than this, everything else works fine, like jogging, accuracy etc etc.
Not me driving the engine - I'm better looking.

Offline Jeff_Birt

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Re: PC Lockup with Mach3
« Reply #2 on: July 20, 2009, 09:20:23 AM »
Another big culprit is electrical noise.Electric motor are huge generators of (electrical) noise that can feed back into your controls and wreak havoc, stepper motor cables and other thigns can generate noise as well. To combat noise the first step is to not run 'noisy' cables in parallel to signal lines like limit switches. Using shielded cables for the signal lines will also help. For spindle/coolant motors you should have a line filter near the motor to stop the noise at the source, for example here is one (bottom of page) that works well for small spindle motors: http://soigeneris.com/cncparts2.aspx. Also, I always recommend an optically isolated breakout board.
Happy machining , Jeff Birt
 
Re: PC Lockup with Mach3
« Reply #3 on: July 20, 2009, 10:39:51 AM »
jimpinder the entire pc locks up, no CTRL+ALT+DEL, keyboard or mouse functionality and only a hard power cycle will bring it back.  i think teh G-code is ok, even the demo roadrunner locked it up. the other g-code was generated from aspire. simple test v-carve sign and others.

Jeff_Birt all my cables are shielded and as for the computer i have it isolated to a APC UPS to help in the isolation and interruption of power. the BOB i am using is the PDMX-132.

thanks
James

Offline Jeff_Birt

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Re: PC Lockup with Mach3
« Reply #4 on: July 20, 2009, 11:08:52 AM »
That BOB is opto-isolated BUT it powers both sides of the isolation with the same on-board transformer. That means that not only are you bringing the noisy 110VAC line onto the control board but your inductively coupling the two circuits that are supposed to be isolated :(

Can you tell if there is a certain device turning on/off that causes the lock up? How about turning off the spindle and any coolant pumps and running it in the air. Does it still lock up? What happens if you turn the machine off and just run Mach?
Happy machining , Jeff Birt
 
Re: PC Lockup with Mach3
« Reply #5 on: July 20, 2009, 12:42:30 PM »
Jeff never thought it might be the router i am using (pc 7815) i will try it without it turned on to see if there is a noise problem.. i will have to try it tonight when i get home..

thanks
James

Offline Hood

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Re: PC Lockup with Mach3
« Reply #6 on: July 20, 2009, 01:39:58 PM »
What motherboard does the computer have?
Hood
Re: PC Lockup with Mach3
« Reply #7 on: July 20, 2009, 03:15:03 PM »
it is an Asus P4C800-E Deluxe board with crucial memory sticks..

Offline Hood

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Re: PC Lockup with Mach3
« Reply #8 on: July 20, 2009, 03:38:10 PM »
Ok, not heard any bad reports about that one so afraid I am no help.
Hood
Re: PC Lockup with Mach3
« Reply #9 on: July 21, 2009, 02:26:10 AM »
well after running the current setup with xp and the router off i ran my 116K line job twice and both times it locked up. so i just took a quick image of the machine and reformatted and installed vista business x86. after installing i ran the same job 2 more times and this time no lockups so far, i will probably run a few more just to be safe.. not sure what the problem in xp was but vista seems to be working fine but only time will tell...

thanks
James