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Timer not counting
« on: March 31, 2012, 01:59:22 AM »
I'm a registered user of Mach3 (v3.043.022), and have used it successfully to drive my CNC3040.  But till now I've been using a desktop running WinXP.  I wanted to get the desktop out of my dirty workshop environment, and use a notebook PC instead, which I could easily remove from the workshop when not needed.

My wife uses an HP/Compaq NW8000 (with Win2k), and I tested that successfully with Mach3, and it drove the CNC correctly.  But she wants to hang on to it, so I bought another (second-hand) HP/Compaq NX6120, which also has a parallel port.  I've loaded Win2k on that too.

After installing Mach3 on it (with the obligatory reboot), and installing the port driver manually, the Driver Test program runs, but after 'taking over' the parallel port, shows no activity (blank, white) in the Timer Variations window, and 0% (also blank) in the Pulse Rating indicator (see screen dump).  I've run it several times, including after a further reboot, but no change.

If I click the Start Timer button, nothing seems to happen.  If I click the Stop Timer button some seconds later, nothing seems to happen.  If I then click Start Timer again, an error box pops up saying 'Timer not counting'.

In case this was a problem only with the Driver Test display, I hooked this PC up to the CNC, but Mach3 failed to drive anything, and pressing the cursor keys didn't even change the displayed coordinates.

Can anyone offer advice on how I might fix this problem?  As a last resort I could maybe swap this notebook with my wife's, but there are hassles involved with that too. :-(

Daniel
(Gerroa, Australia)
« Last Edit: March 31, 2012, 02:01:12 AM by DanielF »

Offline Tweakie.CNC

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Re: Timer not counting
« Reply #1 on: March 31, 2012, 02:30:39 AM »
Hi Daniel,

You could try the WinXP optimization procedure (pretty much the same as 2k) linked on this page http://www.machsupport.com/downloads.php
It may save you having to steal the boss's notebook.  ;)

Tweakie.
KEEP SAFE !

Offline Hood

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Re: Timer not counting
« Reply #2 on: March 31, 2012, 03:41:18 AM »
You can also try the specialdriver.bat, if it doesnt help then just double click on the originaldriver.bat to reinstall the standard driver again.
Hood
Re: Timer not counting
« Reply #3 on: March 31, 2012, 09:47:00 AM »
Thanks for the suggestions (Tweakie & Hood).

I tried Hood's suggestion first (it was the simplest), but still no-go.

I had a look at the XP optimization procedure, but almost all of it was either not applicable (for Win2k) or was how I had set things already.  So I'm still stuck.  Two other bits of information...

The second-hand NX6120 came with XP loaded.  XP frustrates the hell out of me, so I formatted and installed Win2k Pro SP4.  But unfortunately the PC didn't come with any CDs, so I had to download a bunch of Win2k drivers from HP's support website.  I installed them all (there was none specific to the parallel port), but still there are two devices in Device Manager that don't have drivers (and Windows can't find drivers for them): 'Ethernet controller' and 'PCI Device'.  The Ethernet controller doesn't bother me, since I don't need it (I'm using the in-built wireless network device, which works fine).  But the PCI Device bothers me because I have no idea what it is (nor does Windows!).

Anyway, I've tested the LPT1 port by printing, and it works fine too.  So I don't think those missing drivers are related to the Mach3 problem.

Any other suggestions, anyone?

Daniel

Offline Hood

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Re: Timer not counting
« Reply #4 on: March 31, 2012, 09:59:36 AM »
Probably not much more you can do short of using an external controller such as the Smoothstepper.
Hood
Re: Timer not counting
« Reply #5 on: March 31, 2012, 10:28:34 PM »
Today I installed Sandra Lite on this 'new' notebook, and had a look at the motherboard hardware.

Sandra says the on-board video uses system memory for video memory.  I seem to remember reading somewhere that this can cause problems with the Mach3 Pulsing Driver, so I guess that's what the problem most likely is.

Looks like a swap with the wife will be the best solution (a swap of the wife would have even more benefits, but not on the cards at the moment!  :D)

Daniel

Offline Tweakie.CNC

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Re: Timer not counting
« Reply #6 on: April 01, 2012, 01:56:31 AM »
Quote
Looks like a swap with the wife will be the best solution (a swap of the wife would have even more benefits, but not on the cards at the moment!  )

 ;D ;D

Tweakie.
KEEP SAFE !

Offline Chaoticone

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Re: Timer not counting
« Reply #7 on: April 01, 2012, 08:08:33 AM »
 ;D

Brett
;D If you could see the things I have in my head, you would be laughing too. ;D

My guard dog is not what you need to worry about!