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Thread: Shopbot PRT Alpha PC upgrade

  1. #1
    Join Date
    Apr 2008
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    Hopkins Cabinetry Design & Sales, LLC, Villa Rica Ga
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    73

    Default Shopbot PRT Alpha PC upgrade

    Hi all thanks in advance,

    It looks like I must upgrade my PC at the machine.
    For some reason the old PC does not like the usb drives anymore, it is a Vista version machine, any of them!

    I recently bought V-carve pro V9, I have a PRT Alpha, so I need to match things up.

    I design/engineer on a laptop with Windows 7.

    The New PC will be dedicated to the Shopbot however I may connect it via wifi to the internet as we.

    All advice welcomed again thanks in advance.

    Carl

  2. #2
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    Mar 2004
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    Lenox High School, Lenox MA
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    Default

    I design with Aspire on a fairly new laptop that runs Windows 10. I transfer my files via Dropbox and run SB3 on an older laptop with Windows 7. In my experience the Shopbot runs fine on the older PC.

    Phil

  3. #3
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    Apr 2008
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    Hopkins Cabinetry Design & Sales, LLC, Villa Rica Ga
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    Yeah I get the Shopbot works well with the older Windows. I need a new pc and don't want to buy a tower with windows 10 only to find them incompatible.

    Maybe I wasn't clear, will the most recent Shopbot for my PRT Alpha run on windows 10?
    Should I just get a unit with an older version of windows?

  4. #4
    Join Date
    Dec 2007
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    2,304

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    Quote Originally Posted by carlhopkins View Post
    Yeah I get the Shopbot works well with the older Windows. I need a new pc and don't want to buy a tower with windows 10 only to find them incompatible.

    Maybe I wasn't clear, will the most recent Shopbot for my PRT Alpha run on windows 10?
    Should I just get a unit with an older version of windows?
    Can you upgrade you OS

  5. #5
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    Hopkins Cabinetry Design & Sales, LLC, Villa Rica Ga
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    I called tech service today, I'm being told I will be fine on windows 10.

    I was off on my windows version, my current one is XP, but the pc has gotten very slow to start and does not recognize the USB drives as it should.
    It's simply time for a new PC at the machine.
    I feel like I got my money's worth. I bought this old complete system for $60. at a yard sale about 8 or 10 years ago......

  6. #6
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    Apr 2008
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    Hopkins Cabinetry Design & Sales, LLC, Villa Rica Ga
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    So this upgrade has been less than desirable. The first pc came in and only worked about 5-10 mins, the replacement was not shipped when I as told.
    So new pc is in, all software installed and shopbot runs fine in preview mode but does not find the COM port.

    I've tried several things including several versions of the sp software. I guess Monday a call in to tech support and see what they can tell me....?

  7. #7
    Join Date
    Jan 2004
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    iBILD Solutions - Southern NJ
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    Carl,
    Does your PRTAlpha connect to USB directly to the controller card, or is there a USB to Serial converter in-line with the USB? If running the serial converter, it will plug into the Alpha board itself. I'm going to assume you have a USB to Serial connection.

    If you have the original USB to Serial converter from SB, it is an IOGear GUC232A. You MUST install the drivers for it manually. Get them here: https://www.iogear.com/support/dm/driver/GUC232A

    In the task manager, Windows should tell you what port the "ATEN Serial Bridge (COM 3*)" is on - it won't say IOGear. *That's the COM number you want to connect with the ShopBot in SB3.

    Later...turn off USB Selective Suspend in Advanced Power Options...change the monitor time out to something long or never, turn off hard disks = never, put computer to sleep/standby = never, Screensaver = none etc.

    Good luck...

    -B
    High Definition 3D Laser Scanning Services - Advanced ShopBot CNC Training and Consultation - Vectric Custom Video Training IBILD.com

  8. #8
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    Apr 2008
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    Hopkins Cabinetry Design & Sales, LLC, Villa Rica Ga
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    Thanks Brady, I'll give that a try. I bought the machine used in about 2008 and it came with a VFD Delta spindle control which may have nothing to do with this. I'm assuming I can download the driver to a flash drive and work that way. My wi-fi to the shop in this cold weather is non existent. I took my extender out yesterday and had wi-fi. I need to get another one in the shop.

    Again thanks, Carl

  9. #9
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    iBILD Solutions - Southern NJ
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    No problem Carl. I would leave the speed control unplugged until you get reliable coms via sb3. FYI you want to keep the USB cable less than 15' long. You may also benefit from plugging a self powered USB 2.0 hub into the PC and the SB USB cable into that. It creates a USB enhanced port that in many cases will give you better speed/bandwidth. It's one of those undocumented tricks. Although win10 machines often don't show an improvement.

    As for spindle speed control, be sure to right click on it when it comes up and choose your vfd model and settings in the fill in sheet or it won't work.
    High Definition 3D Laser Scanning Services - Advanced ShopBot CNC Training and Consultation - Vectric Custom Video Training IBILD.com

  10. #10
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    It seems I have an issue with the old driver not uninstalling.
    I got a call back from SB tech today.

    Anyway, I did not upgrade for W10, My old pc was well old and tired and was getting very unreliable. I found a reconditioned unit on Amazon for $124. I recently bought Vcarve pro V9. I was able to install my progecad on the new one as well. I will be happy once I get the Sb running.

    The tech did not mention the driver thing though. I will need to figure that out for sure.

    thanks

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