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Migrating Machine - Parallel Port Will Not Run
« on: September 04, 2010, 12:40:41 PM »
This has got me stumped!!!

Step 1)  I have a customer who runs Mach3 and his computer is starting to have problems.
He bought a new system and I installed Mach3 and moved the profile and the liscense. This
results in a setup that moves the Axis counters on-screen but will not work through the parallel
port. I checked the BIOS and the Device Manager.Everything is enabled and the port base I/O
address is 378 with no conflicts. This is the latest version of Mach3 running on an XP Desktop
system.

Step 2) I was puzzled by this so I brought my home system down to the customers site. I
brought over the profile (runs on the customers system) to my system. The results were the
same as in Step 1. All the indications and settings say that all is well. The steppers do not
lock up and there is no apparent communication with the parallel port. THIS IS A RUNNING
SYSTEM !

What am I missing ???

Re: Migrating Machine - Parallel Port Will Not Run
« Reply #1 on: September 04, 2010, 05:18:18 PM »
set the parallel port to epp

Offline Tweakie.CNC

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Re: Migrating Machine - Parallel Port Will Not Run
« Reply #2 on: September 05, 2010, 06:06:55 AM »
As Hood has said many times - Check that your parallel port cable is OK and that it is connected pin1 to pin1 etc and not one of these PC to PC communication types with crossover connections.

Tweakie.
Success consists of going from failure to failure without loss of enthusiasm.  Winston Churchill.
Re: Migrating Machine - Parallel Port Will Not Run
« Reply #3 on: September 05, 2010, 09:04:58 AM »
I appreciate the input and I will check out the parallel port EPP settings again. If I did not
make it clear, let me restate one item. The system I brought down to the customer site
is my home system which already runs MACH3 on my own mill. Importing the settings
from the customers MACH3 (verified) should make this run. This is why I am so perplexed.
It is almost as if I had missed some setting that makes the parallel ports different in some way.

The customers existing system, including the cable, already runs Mach3. The only reason I am
changing anything is that he is starting to get disk errors and this is an old PC. He wants to
head off problems and upgrade to a new system.
Re: Migrating Machine - Parallel Port Will Not Run
« Reply #4 on: September 05, 2010, 09:20:27 AM »
i have had computers that wont run one cnc machine and yet they will run another, and it was down to the epp setting. Another possible cause could be a lack of correct ground connections. What make are the comps.?
Re: Migrating Machine - Parallel Port Will Not Run
« Reply #5 on: September 05, 2010, 09:46:12 AM »
Doesn't steppers not locking up indicate a possible controller/driver problem?  What else may have changed in the setup?
Regards,
John Champlain
Re: Migrating Machine - Parallel Port Will Not Run
« Reply #6 on: September 12, 2010, 03:55:12 PM »
Another weekend and some more clues. In fact, I think I know what is causing my
problem but I am uncertain how to fix it.

I brought my production system to the custmers location and plugged it in. After
moving over the customers profile, I found that two of the axis step (marginally) and
one axis does not.

I opened up the controller and started looking at some voltages off the parallel cable.
The installation has a 30 foot cable. The system that was working produces signals
that are +5 Volts and .6 Volts respectively. This is not the best but it works. The system(s)
that do not work only produce 3.5 Volts and .72 Volts.

Clearly this is an interface problem and I suspect that the newer systems don't drive the
parallel port as well as the customers old system did.

Does anybody have suggestions on how to accommodate a 30 foot run of cable? Before you
ask, yes the cable is 1284 IEEE certified. It is not the high end quality but it is supposed to
meet spec.

The current controller is made from Geckos and the interface is not optical breakout. I have
to wonder if that woul help.
Re: Migrating Machine - Parallel Port Will Not Run
« Reply #7 on: September 12, 2010, 03:57:22 PM »
can you get the computer nearer to the machine and test a standard lead

Online BR549

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Re: Migrating Machine - Parallel Port Will Not Run
« Reply #8 on: September 18, 2010, 06:38:08 PM »
The new computer has a 3.5v port not a 5v port like the old one does.

Add a new pci card that has a 5volt port OR a new bob that will convert the 3.5v signal up to a full 5volt.

Just a thought, (;-) TP