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View Full Version : Mach 3, Vista and a new X4 Plus



Evan
07-27-2008, 12:44 PM
Has anybody here tried running Mach 3 on the Vista operating system? I was at a friend's shop a couple of days ago to have a look at his new Syil X4 plus CNC mill. His computer that he recently purchased is equipped with Vista and from what I can find on the Artsoft forums there aren't many people that have been able to make Mach run properly on Vista.

I wasn't able to get it going at all because he only has a virtual parallel port card and that won't work regardless of the operating system. That can be fixed.

Does anyone have any suggestions or experience with Mach 3 and Vista?

http://vts.bc.ca/pics4/syil1.jpg

level head
07-27-2008, 12:54 PM
My experience with Mach3 and vista didnt end very well. I had to switch my operating system to windows. When i opened up mach3 and was fininshed the computer crashed, and all new settings on motor tunning and such was lost that was when it was running on vista.Ever since switching no problems what so ever.

SGW
07-27-2008, 12:57 PM
Did you search the Yahoo! group http://groups.yahoo.com/group/mach1mach2cnc/ for Vista? It seems to be more active than the support forums on the machsupport website.

lazlo
07-27-2008, 01:34 PM
Vista added the User-Mode Driver Framework, which in layman's terms is a completely different way of writing device drivers.

Basically, any legacy device drivers for XP and earlier aren't going to work well with Vista.

So Mach itself should run fine, but the issue is going to be Mach talking to the devices: IO ports, parallel ports, USB ports, ...

Before y'all curse Microsoft for this, a great many of the Blue-Screens you see with XP and earlier are due to bad drivers from third-party vendors, especially graphics cards drivers. So the User-Mode Driver Framework was Microsoft's attempt to isolate the drivers so a bad driver didn't crash your whole system.

Unfortunately, like many big companies, while the idea was great in theory, the actual implementation is painful...

wierdscience
07-27-2008, 01:45 PM
I can vouch for driver incompatibility,it's a PITA to get a printer to work right on Vista so Mach3 should be fun:D

Rustybolt
07-27-2008, 02:31 PM
I just bought Mach3 and down loaded it to my vista HP computer. I see now that I probably should also download it to one of the machine computers that use XP.

Evan
07-27-2008, 02:38 PM
I didn't think it would work but without a working parallel port we couldn't try it. I was able to send a reset command via the virtual port but that was outside of Mach 3. I'll have to see if the vendor has the XP downgrade program still available.

Evan
07-27-2008, 02:44 PM
Before y'all curse Microsoft for this,...

It's still Microsoft's fault in the first place. They had to find a way to defeat the hardware abstraction layer in XP (NT 5.1) in order for DirectX to run properly so they made it possible to circumvent the HAL via system level drivers.

lazlo
07-27-2008, 03:19 PM
It's not a HAL issue. On most operating systems, including Linux, device drivers run in privileged mode, and are part of the operating system kernel. That means that every device driver is actually modifying the core operating system.

That works great if you have a small number of devices to support, and therefore a small number of competent device drivers writers. But even a single bad device driver will crash the kernel, and cause a reboot of your machine. When you have millions of different peripherals (graphics cards, sound cards, USB devices,...) from all over the planet, it's very difficult to insure that some bonehead isn't going to write a device driver that will kill your OS.

So in Vista, the User-Mode Driver Framework pulls the device drivers out of the kernel, and the Vista drivers now operate in Ring 3 "User" mode: so Vista device drivers are now like user-level applications. This is why the Vista graphics drivers were so slow at first: the device drivers are now applications that have to make proxy requests to the kernel to talk to the actual graphics card, instead of talking directly to the graphics card like they could when they were part of the kernel.

Evan
07-27-2008, 03:26 PM
Well, I am just going by what I read on MS Technet when XP was in beta.

John Stevenson
07-27-2008, 05:21 PM
Evan,
We have played with it but not had a lot of sucess with it.
I'd get him to downgrade to XP home or pro.

oldtiffie
07-28-2008, 04:59 AM
And that is why I bought two additional copies of XP Pro before the "close off date" - 30 June 2008.

I have one machine with XP Pro on it and another with W2K. I will order a new computer and install XP Pro on it for dedicated use with Mach3 on the "Seig" X3 mill - when I can get the supplier to get his finger out. All of my main boards have a parallel port.

I have a few other matters to deal with that rank ahead of computers and workshops - so all will have to wait.

I hope that whoever buys a "Syil" - which has changed from "Syil" which sounds a lot like "Sieg" to "Toolmach" which now sounds a lot like "Tormach" treads carefully. I was not the least bit impressed with Syil here in OZ and was warned/advised and so went for the genuine Seig X3 and a locally developed retro-conversion kit - which runs under Mach3 - which I am still chasing the developer for.