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Re: Software stops mid opperation.
« Reply #10 on: March 13, 2019, 05:27:18 PM »
  I am using a desktop.

  I have been wanting to upgrade to an external motion controller for a while but just haven't had the time to research it and find some good boards. I will look into the controllers that you suggested and see about upgrading now.I am using the printer for part of a home business and just need it to run reliably.

Thanks for all your time and help.  Your info will save me a lot of time and grief.

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Re: Software stops mid opperation.
« Reply #11 on: March 13, 2019, 05:34:01 PM »
Is there anything else or should I give it a try now?
Try out
Should be stable
"the gift of God is eternal life through Jesus Christ our Lord"

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Re: Software stops mid opperation.
« Reply #12 on: March 13, 2019, 05:40:05 PM »
Your PC is not a laptop is it? 
Craig
He already said his PC is a Dell Optiplex 760 - a desktop with built in Parallel port.
"the gift of God is eternal life through Jesus Christ our Lord"
Re: Software stops mid opperation.
« Reply #13 on: March 13, 2019, 05:48:53 PM »
Hi,
I, for a long time avoided external controllers, I had (still have) a dual core Atom Mini-ITX board with one built in
parallel port and I added another on a PCI card, and it worked really well.

Eventually I decided I wanted to go to Mach4 and that all but requires an external controller.
When I got it (Ethernet SmoothStepper) I found that I could tune my motors 1/3 faster and more acceleration
without losing steps, in fact run a little cooler and sound sweeter than before.

I was not unhappy with the parallel port, it seemed to go well. So I was really really surprised that an
external controller would make such a difference, but it did!

The other thing is that Mach runs better, without stopping or stuttering is you hit <redraw> say.

All up I have gone from a nay-sayer parallel port supporter to a rabid external motion controller supporter.
You will also, if you read any of my other posts, know that I absolutely hate Chinese made controllers, they don't
work as they should, if they work at all, and don't support al the features Mach has come to expect.

Craig

PS
Quote
He already said his PC is a Dell Optiplex 760 - a desktop with built in Parallel port.

Sorry missed it when skimming the thread.
My wife left with my best friend...
     and I miss him!

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Re: Software stops mid opperation.
« Reply #14 on: March 13, 2019, 07:18:13 PM »
Craig,
IMHO
I am still waiting for the external motion controllers to mature.
USB and Ethernet are NOT really suitable for the FACTORY environment.
USB is always grounded to CITY electricity ground and a wrong wiring has blow up the PC or cause electric shock or fire. There is no usually isolation in a USB device. There is no screws to tighten up a USB connection like a DB25.

Ethernet is perhaps better than USB.
BUT still being High frequency is subject to NOISE interference.
There are too many points that can contribute to failures. TCP/IP is known to be unreliable that is why the INTERNET must have multiple alternative paths and IP always has "time-to-live".

UC100 only has 1 second buffer.
ESS  has how many seconds of buffers?

The "achilles heel" is going to be the external motion controller cannot get enough data from Mach3 or Mach4 on time. Solution is then to having to upgrade your PC to be faster.
If so the external motion controller will be redundant.
By upgrading my PC from a dual core CORE-2 DUO 2GHZ system to an I5-7600 PC 3.6GHZ, my router reached the Maximum speed physical possible based on the stepper motors & drivers & mechanical build. That's is 2.4 times the original speed I could get no matter how I tried.
I am only running 24 volts drivers. I could reach 2 or 3 time faster if I run at 48 Volts.
ALL ON THE parallel port.

I still support profitable factories. Some are still running many huge CNC lathes on DOS7 on Novell network and machines using qbasic files and driving ISA boards. They make over $AUD a million a year profit. Their office PCs are Windows 10x64 of course.

I also support a company selling new PlasmaCAM machines and more expensive waterjets machine and huge lathes and huge Mills and wire-cutters. ALL are using the RELIABLE parallel port still.
« Last Edit: March 13, 2019, 07:21:23 PM by reuelt »
"the gift of God is eternal life through Jesus Christ our Lord"
Re: Software stops mid opperation.
« Reply #15 on: March 13, 2019, 11:00:06 PM »
Hi,

Quote
I am still waiting for the external motion controllers to mature.

The good ones are already and have been for some time. That's not to say they wont improve and grow but they are
ready for serious work right now.

Quote
USB and Ethernet are NOT really suitable for the FACTORY environment.

You are correct with USB but you are 100% wrong about Ethernet....what do you suppose Ethercat and Profibus
are based on....you guessed it Ethernet. Ethercat and Profibus are the stand out performers in industrial control.

Quote
TCP/IP is known to be unreliable that is why the INTERNET must have multiple alternative paths and IP always has "time-to-live".

With multiple paths as are available with the Internet you have to allow for disordered packets, there is a setting you can make
however that requires all packets follow the same path and therefore NOT be disordered.  That multiple paths exist IS NOT
a REQUIREMENT of the Internet but rather a consequence of its dispersed structure. CNC is different.
Firstly you do not not communicate to a machine over the Internet, in fact it is not recommended to communicate over a network
or router either. The packet tracking order of TCP/IP is redundant, with PC to controller on a single Ethernet link
you can't possibly disorder the packets. Not that it matters, TCP/IP can reorder if necessary.

Quote
UC100 only has 1 second buffer.
ESS  has how many seconds of buffers?

The max ESS buffer is 500ms. You are mistaken however if you believe that a longer buffer is a good thing. If the buffer
is longer then if you issue a <feedhold> for instance the longer it takes for it to flush through the buffer. It is preferable
to have a short a buffer as possible. That increases the likelihood that the buffer will empty with bad consequences for your
job. The more powerful your PC and more memory and with the absolute minimum of extra software installed and/or running
allow you to shave the buffer ever lower.

My little dual core Atom Mini-Itx board is very low power so I leave its buffer set at 180ms as the plugin ships from Warp9
and I have never run out of data yet.

As I have proven, and as smurph has also proven with his Mud-board you do not need a hugely powerful PC.

My laptop is a few years old now but is I7 16G at 2.2GHz. It runs my machine indentically as my dual core Atom
at 1.8Ghz with 2.5G RAM (address space limited) and shared with video! The only thing my laptop does better is when I load
a big (10M plus) file and it has to decode and draw the initial tool path. My laptop does it in 5-10 seconds whereas the Atom can
take a minute. The bottom line is don't waste your money on a powerful PC, Mach doesn't need it.

The ESS is by no means the fastest controller nor is it the slowest, its pulse rate is up to 4Mhz, compare that to Mach's
parallel port at 25kHz default.

Rubbing sticks together is still a reliable way to start a fire, but there are better ways.

Craig

My wife left with my best friend...
     and I miss him!

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Re: Software stops mid opperation.
« Reply #16 on: March 14, 2019, 03:34:28 AM »
What did Art Fenerty in "MACH3 Mystery" said?
"Mach3 was designed for the printer port, and its architecture is derived from the treacherous territory of Windows kernel mode, then it will be understood more easily, why the design architecture, which has evolved over time, must reflect the original printer port operation in terms of its internal limitations.
This means that “the simple fact you are using an external engine does not mean you
will not necessarily have a limitation enforced by the original specifications of the
software.”


Probably MACH4 is indicated if people want to use more powerful external motion controllers.
"the gift of God is eternal life through Jesus Christ our Lord"
Re: Software stops mid opperation.
« Reply #17 on: March 14, 2019, 07:26:57 AM »
Hi,

Quote
Probably MACH4 is indicated if people want to use more powerful external motion controllers.

Funnily enough that is not quite correct either. The ESS for instance can be used with either Mach3 OR Mach4 with
the right plugin. The hardware is indentical, or you can swap between Mach3 and Mach4 without hardware change
at all. The same it true with the UC300 and 57CNC.

The true advantage of Mach4 is that is has a modular arrangement, a consistent API and a superior scripting
language. That makes Mach4 very flexible and can be adapted to wildly different machines.

The reason that Mach4 all but requires an external motion controller is because the developers at NFS realize that
a dedicated FGPA/microcontroller/DSP will always be able to outperform a PC's CPU in realtime operations. They have
therefore developed Mach4 to take advantage of external controllers and free Mach4 from the limitations of the
parallel port.

Craig

My wife left with my best friend...
     and I miss him!

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Re: Software stops mid opperation.
« Reply #18 on: March 15, 2019, 01:37:16 AM »
ESS UC300 and 57CNC on MACH3 will NEVER be able to outperform a FAST NEW PC running
Win7 (32bits) and parallel port.
All of them external motion Controller ESS UC300 and 57CNC have written their "add-on" software in "RING 3 USER LAYER" of the operating system and so controlled by the bloated Windows OS.
The Mach3 driver & pulsing were written in RING 0 Kernel Mode. It is not just pulsing, that is in ring 0. It means the buffer is also in ring 0 and so windows must be very fast to be able to fill the ring zero buffers within the time available.
The best MACH3 system is to have a Windows 7 (32bits) that can pulse at 100k with excellent results and then intentionally reduce the pulse engine to 60k Hz or just 45k Hz so that MACH3 main program (user interface) under ring 3 of windows will always have enough time filling up the buffer - even if you are doing something else while MACH3 is running.

People who like external motion Controllers like ESS UC300 and 57CNC should just go for MACH4 because MACH 4 user interface is improved & many new features added but is like a nice car sold without an engine.
I do not believe MACH4 can ever be faster than MACH3 if the computer is exactly the same low power PC.
It is horses for courses.
"You cannot sell ice to an Eskimo."
"the gift of God is eternal life through Jesus Christ our Lord"
Re: Software stops mid opperation.
« Reply #19 on: March 15, 2019, 02:18:13 AM »
Hi,
I run my step direction AC spindle motor at 458kHz with my ESS, rather faster than any parallel port. Still way under the 4Mhz
of which the ESS is capable.

Just in what way do you believe a general purpose CPU will outperform a FPGA or microcontroller replete with hardware
timers etc?

Craig
My wife left with my best friend...
     and I miss him!