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Author Topic: Will MACH3 ever support 64-bit systems? Officially? FYI, it's 2010  (Read 140120 times)

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Re: Will MACH3 ever support 64-bit systems? Officially? FYI, it's 2010
« Reply #100 on: April 08, 2011, 09:51:22 AM »
Well, virtualization is probably going to remain an option. Especially if Microsoft improves their Virtual PC software. I still have to see if I can get Mach3 running in VMWare Player. That'd provide a free option for 64 bit Windows 7 Pro users and hopefully Windows 8 Pro users going forward.

I think external controllers with Ethernet / wifi support might be the future even more than USB ones. Something like a Beagleboard or a future version of Arduino should easily have enough horsepower for 4-6 axis CNC. Networking support would be pretty great for controlling and monitoring from a laptop and would easily let people switching controller PCs with a software install, not even requiring drivers. I'd bet you could even run a CNC rig off of a modern smartphone now that they're pushing 1Ghz with dual core processors.

andrewm

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Re: Will MACH3 ever support 64-bit systems? Officially? FYI, it's 2010
« Reply #101 on: April 08, 2011, 10:13:38 AM »
Looks like Microsoft is really trying to go above and beyond with Windows8, It will be interesting to see how well a Web Based OS does.

Offline Jeff_Birt

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Re: Will MACH3 ever support 64-bit systems? Officially? FYI, it's 2010
« Reply #102 on: April 08, 2011, 10:25:35 AM »
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Something like a Beagleboard or a future version of Arduino should easily have enough horsepower for 4-6 axis CNC. Networking support would be pretty great for controlling and monitoring from a laptop and would easily let people switching controller PCs with a software install, not even requiring drivers. I'd bet you could even run a CNC rig off of a modern smartphone now that they're pushing 1Ghz with dual core processors.

The problem is just having a fast processor is not enough. You have to have the hardware resources available that can do real time motion control. If you look at the motion control baords available today they all use FPGAs to create 'programmable' dedicated hardware for the task. Small microcontrollers can do a limited amount of such control but the hardware involved not fast enough to match what can be done for the same price in an FPGA.

Haivng used a lot of netowrk connected I/O devices I am a bit undecided on their fit for the general public. Configuration is much more difficult and there are an unlimited number of network issues that can cause problems. I've had such devices get into strange states where you cannot connect to them properly and several hours can be spent trying to get an alternitive connection method to work to 'reset' the device.

I can also picture some guy trying to run his CNC machine through his $50 home router rather than have a direct/dedicated connection to the machine and not understand why it won't work properly and be miffed that he has to go out and spend $20 to buy another NIC to make it work properly (and still give him access to his network for file sharing.)
Happy machining , Jeff Birt
 
Re: Will MACH3 ever support 64-bit systems? Officially? FYI, it's 2010
« Reply #103 on: April 08, 2011, 10:26:08 AM »
Typically every other OS the Microsoft comes out with is junk.  Win 3.1 was good. 95 junk. 98 good, ME was junk. XP was good, Vista was junk, so far Windows 7 has been pretty good.  Expect Windows 8 to be junk.

andrewm

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Re: Will MACH3 ever support 64-bit systems? Officially? FYI, it's 2010
« Reply #104 on: April 08, 2011, 10:32:35 AM »
Typically every other OS the Microsoft comes out with is junk.  Win 3.1 was good. 95 junk. 98 good, ME was junk. XP was good, Vista was junk, so far Windows 7 has been pretty good.  Expect Windows 8 to be junk.

Who knows, the cycle could break(9 Billion in R&D so far would suggest it).
Re: Will MACH3 ever support 64-bit systems? Officially? FYI, it's 2010
« Reply #105 on: April 08, 2011, 10:37:06 AM »
I won't be the first kid on my block to give it a try. 

andrewm

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Re: Will MACH3 ever support 64-bit systems? Officially? FYI, it's 2010
« Reply #106 on: April 08, 2011, 10:46:47 AM »
lol

I went from 98 to XP to Win7 so Unless it has something extremely amazing I wont even get it, Im happy with Win7. I cant see a need for a 128bit/Web Based OS.
Re: Will MACH3 ever support 64-bit systems? Officially? FYI, it's 2010
« Reply #107 on: April 08, 2011, 11:11:23 AM »
Loosely related ....
Do you guys see any truth to the following comment ?

The "Things" That You Own. Many of the very possessions that we used to own are
still in our lives, but we may not actually own them in the future. They may simply
reside in "the cloud." Today your computer has a hard drive and you store your
pictures, music, movies, and documents. Your software is on a CD or DVD, and you can
always re-install it if need be. But all of that is changing. Apple, Microsoft, and
Google are all finishing up their latest "cloud services." That means that when you
turn on a computer, the Internet will be built into the operating system. So,
Windows, Google, and the Mac OS will be tied straight into the Internet. If you
click an icon, it will open something in the Internet cloud. If you save something,
it will be saved to the cloud. And you may pay a monthly subscription fee to the
cloud provider.

Thanks,
Russ

Offline ger21

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Re: Will MACH3 ever support 64-bit systems? Officially? FYI, it's 2010
« Reply #108 on: April 08, 2011, 11:40:18 AM »
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And the cost of CNC will go up, as you'll be forced to use an external motion controller.

Why assume it will 'go up'? I can use a cheap PC/motherboard and a $150 motion control card and have a very nice system. No fussing with the parallel port at all. It is a lot simpler, easier and less expensive than spending days trying to find a mother board whose parallel port will work for a CNC controller or to find PCI card parallel port that will work. If my cheap PC fails I can move everything to a new PC with no fuss. In my mind the total installed and operating costs drop with an external motion control board.


I think it's safe to assume that the majority of Mach3 users use the parallel port. And these people don't have to spend days to get it working. You've been accused of "pushing" the Smoothstepper in the past, probably due to statements like this.

Right now I can buy a $50 PC on Ebay and the parallel port will work with no problem.

If the parallel port is no longer an option, then it'll cost me 4 times as much to get a PC.

In my mind, an external motion device is an unnecessary added expense.

The PC running my router was $25 on Ebay, a PIII with a 1Ghz processor. I purchased a spare motherboard an processor for another $20.
Gerry

2010 Screenset
http://www.thecncwoodworker.com/2010.html

JointCAM Dovetail and Box Joint software
http://www.g-forcecnc.com/jointcam.html

Offline Jeff_Birt

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Re: Will MACH3 ever support 64-bit systems? Officially? FYI, it's 2010
« Reply #109 on: April 08, 2011, 12:17:23 PM »
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You've been accused of "pushing" the Smoothstepper in the past, probably due to statements like this.

Why is it that you can't disagree with me without hurling accusations? Why is it that you are afford the opportunity to express your own opinion but not me? I'm offering up my opinion, expertise and experience for all, free of charge. If I like a particular product I am most likely gong to tell other people about it, if I think something is a POS I will likely mention that too. (It is also interesting to note that I did not mention any particular product, you did.)

I do run a business and mention some of the items I sell. I sell products that I like, that I have found to work well, have found to be useful and would use in my own shop. I DO NOT just push the cheapest imported crap I can get my hands on. I also talk about a lot of products I don't sell and I recommend a lot of them if they solve a problem someone is facing. In fact you would likely be surprised that I regularly send links in emails to other 'competitive' sites if they offer a product that better suits someones needs. I also work with my 'competitors' to bundle shipments of our respective products for international customers so they can save money on shipping charges. So am I 'pushing' my competitors products when I suggest them to people.

I think if you actually got to know me you would find I'm the least pushy person on the planet.


Quote
I think it's safe to assume that the majority of Mach3 users use the parallel port. And these people don't have to spend days to get it working. You've been accused of "pushing" the Smoothstepper in the past, probably due to statements like this.

Of course most people use the parallel port as it has been out the longest. There also used to be no other affordable choice. Now there are lots of choice in all different price/performance ranges for external motion control products. If these products did not offer superior performance they would not exist, i.e. there would be no need for them.

I do a lot of technical support, at least half of it is supporting folks who have never spent even $1 with me. I can say with a strong conviction that getting a parallel port system to work can be very difficult for some folks. Getting a PC (old or new) that works well from the parallel port is like pot-luck, you never know what you are going to wind up with. That is why many companies go through a tremendous effort to test a variety of motherboards and components to find an optimal solution. If you are good with computers you can get a wider variety of PCs to work but most folks do not have that skill set and the results are quite mixed (and a lot of people just get frustrated and quit).

None of the external motion control solutions that work with Mach are perfect either but they work the same no matter what PC they are on. From a support point of view it is much better for the end user and the person providing support as the potential problem set is greatly reduced. I have a few parallel port machines here and they work well so I won't fuss with them at this time. I've have also spent hours trying to get various PCs to work from the parallel port that just did not perform very good at all.

I'm not pushing any particular product as much as pointing out that the parallel port is not the panacea of motion control I/O choices. There are many factors involved besides the initial purchase price.
Happy machining , Jeff Birt