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Author Topic: Will MACH3 ever support 64-bit systems? Officially? FYI, it's 2010  (Read 140196 times)

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Re: Will MACH3 ever support 64-bit systems? Officially? FYI, it's 2010
« Reply #50 on: May 26, 2010, 08:57:25 PM »
Quote
it is a misunderstanding on my part because I didn't know (and may never really understand) the difference between 32 bit and 64 bit operating systems. It sure isn't obvious to a non-computer person that they are totally different and one is not a super set of the other (the min/max conundrum). The point is I shouldn't have to as a customer.

You shouldn't have to understand?? WHAT!!! Are you serious??? Your kidding, right??? The very nature of CNC IS a basic understanding of computers. I mean.... that's just what it is! Plain and simple! Lets just break it down a bit.
C.N.C   Three letters. They have a deeper meaning than just three simple letters. They stand for a larger set of words. It's what we call "an abbreviation"

ab·bre·vi·a·tion
 [uh-bree-vee-ey-shuhn]
–noun
1.
a shortened or contracted form of a word or phrase, used to represent the whole, as Dr. for Doctor, U.S. for United States, lb. for pound.


In this case, CNC stands for... Computerized-Numerical-Control.
Computerized-Numerical-Control
Computerized-Numerical-Control
Computerized-Numerical-Control
The very first letter, of the very first word, should indicate that "Hey, I probably need to know something about computers before diving head first into this"
If your a "non-computer person", then you need to be working real hard on becoming one, otherwise your in the wrong playground. It's just as simple as that.

I want to drive a truck, so I went out and bought one last week. Naturally the fuel didn't last long, so it came time to purchase some. So I'm sitting there at the gas station, looking at all the choices. Lets see, we've got-- three separate grades of gasoline, diesel, kerosene, and some ethanol mix. Now, I have absolutely no clue as to which one my truck may be limited to, or even if it is limited to a single choice. The sticker on the gauge says unleaded only. Looks like I'm 'good to go' on any of these fuels! WRONG!!! I put diesel in my gasoline truck, and now it's already torn up! Ya know, I shouldn't have to know technical things like fuel grades, because I'm just a customer. I know that Ford stated unleaded fuel only, but Ford should have also stated clearly that diesel will not work. What is this world coming to.

Offline FXC

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Re: Will MACH3 ever support 64-bit systems? Officially? FYI, it's 2010
« Reply #51 on: May 26, 2010, 09:11:45 PM »
Let's face it, most machinists' knowledge is:

1. Number one, aka first, aka main, aka primary: machine tools
2. Number two, aka secondary: computers and software
 
Starting with Art. With all due respect - honest.   
Mach3 is a mess.
Re: Will MACH3 ever support 64-bit systems? Officially? FYI, it's 2010
« Reply #52 on: May 27, 2010, 12:09:11 PM »
Well, I wish I knew that before I bought my PC.

Of course, with the missleading information in the misslabeled "minumum requirements" section of the ArtSoft home page, how was I to know that "32 bit version" is actually a maximum unlike the other things listed like Ghz and RAM that are truly minimums.

If I only knew then what I knew now...........

The language says:

◦32-bit version of Windows 2000, Windows XP, Windows Vista, or Windows 7 Operating System

What did you really want it to say different?  Seems pretty clear and unambigous. 

RE Smoothstepper and similar boards, what's probably not clear to a lot of people is that Windows is systematically making it harder and harder to support the parallel.  It's pretty well hacked into the architecture.  Over time, it may get harder until someday it is impossible.  I have 32-bit programs today that won't run in Win 7 32-bit, for example.  So, however much we may like the low cost of parallel ports (and the reliability with Mach3), they're a dying breed.  How long will it be?  Who knows?  Forever if you are prepared to buy old PC's and Windows XP off eBay.  But, some people don't want to deal with that for whatever reasons.  So there needs to be some better answer over time.

The specific problem with products like Smoothstepper is they seem to reach a point where interest wanes, they are less well supported, and people start to wonder about them.  Sometimes they die because of it, ala GRex.  Sometimes it is just annoying.  Smoothstepper, from my perspective, it closer to annoying than dying, but despite having one, I am not sure I can recommend them wholeheartedly because of this uncertainty over their support.  Someone needs to finish one so it has all the Mach3 features like backlash comp and then support it well.  If it isn't a big enough seller to keep the developers happy, then I wish they'd build more products so they could afford to working on Mach-related products or merge with another company that can help.  I've suggested Gecko in the past, but a company like CNC4PC would do fine as well. 

In the end, what's on the little microcontroller is just not that complex as software.  Someone will figure it out and we'll have it.  Heck, there are now people putting whole g-code interpreters into the Arduinos. 

Cheers,

BW
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Re: Will MACH3 ever support 64-bit systems? Officially? FYI, it's 2010
« Reply #53 on: December 01, 2010, 01:44:48 PM »
Okay this is a totally off the wall Rube Goldberg solution, but with Windows 7 Ultimate or Enterprise Edition, you can actually boot from a VHD virtual machine file like the provided XP mode VHD. That would give the VM full hardware access and might let Mach3 run the parallel port driver.

I don't know if Chris.Botha ever tried using a different virtual machine package either, but if he found one that worked, you could probably convert the provided XP Mode VM into it. VMWare can definitely convert them, but I don't know about VirtualBox or some of the other free solutions.

And at this point, shouldn't this forum be named "Mach 3 under Vista and 7"?
« Last Edit: December 01, 2010, 01:48:49 PM by El_Matarife »
Re: Will MACH3 ever support 64-bit systems? Officially? FYI, it's 2010
« Reply #54 on: December 02, 2010, 07:04:12 AM »
I went out and checked, VirtualBox doesn't have parallel port support. http://www.virtualbox.org/ticket/990 The good news is, VMWare Player does. http://social.technet.microsoft.com/Forums/en-US/w7itprovirt/thread/260401be-73cc-4fec-8d9a-bc98f7e8a602

You'll need the a copy of Windows 7 Business, Enterprise, or Ultimate to download XP Mode file from Microsoft, http://www.microsoft.com/windows/virtual-pc/download.aspx You'll have to run it once in Microsoft Virtual PC to generate the VMC configuration file VMWare Converter looks for. Here's the Converter http://www.vmware.com/products/converter/ and here's VMWare Player http://www.vmware.com/products/player/

Offline Jeff_Birt

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Re: Will MACH3 ever support 64-bit systems? Officially? FYI, it's 2010
« Reply #55 on: December 02, 2010, 07:56:45 AM »
Or, you can just use a KFlop, SmothStepper, etc and not fool around with all this VMWare stuff.
Happy machining , Jeff Birt
 
Re: Will MACH3 ever support 64-bit systems? Officially? FYI, it's 2010
« Reply #56 on: January 02, 2011, 11:50:23 AM »
I think the ideal solution would be for Mach to provide native USB support and third party BOB manufacturers to go to USB.  Since I'm a big fan of Gecko, if they came out with a BOB with USB interface, I'd use it exclusively.  I tried a SmoothStepper and had problems.  It kept loosing the com connection.  

Eventually, these third party manufacturers will have to go to USB, but Mach will have to go first.  If Mach went to native USB, everyone else will follow.  We know it's possible on both ends.  On the hardware end there is the SmoothStepper and on the software end there is the plug-in that makes it work.  If you can write a USB plug-in, it shouldn't be too hard to integrate that functionality internally.   Someone just needs to come up with a hardware solution that (1) Is as stable as the PP connection and (2) Doesn't cost a kings ransom.
Re: Will MACH3 ever support 64-bit systems? Officially? FYI, it's 2010
« Reply #57 on: January 02, 2011, 12:05:25 PM »
A controller that talks to USB doesn't have to be expensive.  Arduinos are $30 at the low end.

Publish a standard interface that Mach talks to and someone will write the software for a microcontroller.

Meanwhile, I just saw that Gecko says they're adding motion control to a lot of their new drives.  That'll be interesting and might be another route away from the PP.  Hopefully they'll have better control of the software than the G100 did.

Best,

BW
www.cnccookbook.com
Try G-Wizard Machinist's Calculator for free:

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Re: Will MACH3 ever support 64-bit systems? Officially? FYI, it's 2010
« Reply #58 on: January 05, 2011, 11:07:26 PM »
Well, now it is 2011, any plan or progress on the windows 7 64 bit?

Offline ger21

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Re: Will MACH3 ever support 64-bit systems? Officially? FYI, it's 2010
« Reply #59 on: January 08, 2011, 08:58:42 PM »
There is no plan, ans probably won't be one in the foreseeable future. It took several years to develop the 32bit driver, and the person who wrote it (Art) is retired. There's no one else that has the expertise to do it. A recent thread on the Yahoo group about the history of Mach3 points out that virtually all Windows "experts" will tell you it's impossible for Mach3 to do what it does.
Gerry

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