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  • Setting up EMC2 on PC.........??

    Getting involved with open source software is confusing, many varieties of Linux, etc, etc. So I'd like know how some of you accomplished this.

    If there's a for-pay package available that would be fine with me. Going through a tedious learning process doesn't interest me at this time. I'm fine with the part about configuring Emc2 to my machine configuration, getting to that point is my concern.

  • #2
    Originally posted by DR View Post
    Getting involved with open source software is confusing, many varieties of Linux, etc, etc. So I'd like know how some of you accomplished this.

    If there's a for-pay package available that would be fine with me. Going through a tedious learning process doesn't interest me at this time. I'm fine with the part about configuring Emc2 to my machine configuration, getting to that point is my concern.
    You download the EMC2 live iso, burn a cd, or make a bootable usb drive. Tell your computer to boot off the cdrom or usb stick, and it installs linux preconfigured with EMC2 and real time OS. From there, you can load it up and configure it to your machine.

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    • #3
      Originally posted by RB211 View Post
      You download the EMC2 live iso, burn a cd, or make a bootable usb drive. Tell your computer to boot off the cdrom or usb stick, and it installs linux preconfigured with EMC2 and real time OS. From there, you can load it up and configure it to your machine.
      That easy, huh? Thanks, that's exactly what I was looking for.

      I have a small DynaMectronics mill I want to run with a 4th axis. Open loop steppers will be fine for the tiny non-metallic parts I want to make.

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      • #4
        It's now called LInuxCNC.

        First you have to have either a PC that is CNC compatible -- not all are -- or a separate board to issue the CNC commands. There is info on this on the LinuxCNC website.

        There are different versions of LinuxCNC. I'm still running antiquated 8.04 because it ran better than the newer versions on my P4 PCs. Again, this is discussed on the LinuxCNC website & forum.

        Installing is usually straightforward. Setting up the CNC part sometimes is straightforward *if* your machine type (drivers, board, tach, etc.) is included in the installation Wizard. If not then some manual code tweaking may be required. I had to jump through hoops to add my tach because it was not the same kind of tach as in the Wizard.

        Then you'll probably want to tweak various settings for the motors,limit switches, etc..

        It took me about a month the first time I switched a machine to LinuxCNC, to get things running decently. But every install is different because it depends on your hardware and how similar it is to the Wizard's standard configurations.

        If you get stuck, the LinuxCNC forum will help you.

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        • #5
          Originally posted by MTNGUN View Post
          It's now called LInuxCNC.

          First you have to have either a PC that is CNC compatible -- not all are -- or a separate board to issue the CNC commands. There is info on this on the LinuxCNC website.

          There are different versions of LinuxCNC. I'm still running antiquated 8.04 because it ran better than the newer versions on my P4 PCs. Again, this is discussed on the LinuxCNC website & forum.

          Installing is usually straightforward. Setting up the CNC part sometimes is straightforward *if* your machine type (drivers, board, tach, etc.) is included in the installation Wizard. If not then some manual code tweaking may be required. I had to jump through hoops to add my tach because it was not the same kind of tach as in the Wizard.

          Then you'll probably want to tweak various settings for the motors,limit switches, etc..

          It took me about a month the first time I switched a machine to LinuxCNC, to get things running decently. But every install is different because it depends on your hardware and how similar it is to the Wizard's standard configurations.

          If you get stuck, the LinuxCNC forum will help you.
          More good information, thanks.

          Is your setup running on a dedicated Linux machine or do you also have Windows too? We have a local nonprofit selling refurbished computers. They have a tie in with Microsoft, everything now comes with a fresh install of Win10 Pro. You can get a fairly decent desktop system with one year warranty for around a 150 bucks (usually less than the equivalent on CL).

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          • #6
            One thing you should do is boot from the LiveCD or USB stick and run the jitter test. This will show if your PC can generate step signals consistently enough to work well.

            With the full install you really don't need to think about Linux. I've had an 8.0.4 machine going for six or seven years that just runs. One nice feature is that I can use Dropbox to sync NC files from my CAD machine. In hundreds of hours of runtime it's never done anything weird.

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            • #7
              Originally posted by DR View Post
              Is your setup running on a dedicated Linux machine or do you also have Windows too? .
              Some of my boxes have Linux setup alongside XP. But I'm getting away from that because I don't use Windoze anymore.

              I haven't used Win10 but have heard that it is complicated, though not impossible, to install Linux alongside the newer versions of Windoze.

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              • #8
                I am running a dual boot dell 745 with two flavors of Linux on it. Centos 7 for security system and general network compatibility and Debian GNU/Linux (7.11) which runs linuxcnc. I set this up about a year ago and the pain is recorded here https://forum.linuxcnc.org/30-cnc-ma...a-alliant-mill
                Finding the computer was easier for me because I was using servos. You will require a better computer and my experiance with Latency test are here https://forum.linuxcnc.org/38-genera...mputer-be-used. The folks at Linuxcnc were great to work with and they had their work cut out for them. But its working now and I love it.

                I downloaded the operating system, burned a dvd, installed Debian, downloaded Linuxcnc, and installed it as a apt. Its a little different in the Debian world you use apt-get and I have to look it up any time I use it.

                Jim
                Last edited by jamby; 03-05-2017, 09:58 PM.

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                • #9
                  Couple of things to remember. No matter what hardware you are using - the computer has to perform realtime 'well' (low jitter). How well then depends on what you are doing.

                  The printer port. This requires the best realtime performance. You want jitter (depending on what you want for step rates) usually <20us.

                  If you are using external interface hardware (like mesa, pico or whatever) then the jitter could approach 100us and still perform well.

                  Because linuxcnc isn't a buffered system (offloading motion to the external hardware) - it will always require the computer to have decent realtime performance. (some think this is a downfall - I think it is an asset.)

                  This is one of the wizards for setting up step/dir systems. http://linuxcnc.org/docs/2.7/html/config/stepconf.html it also shows the latency checker.

                  sam

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                  • #10
                    +1 with sansbury and skunkworks. You'll need to run the jitter test to see if your computer will keep up.

                    My install is old, back when it was still called EMC2. The concern at the time was mostly video. It didn't like machines that shared pc memory with the video card (I think lots of notebooks do this) or video cards that demanded too much of the processor's time. The simpler the video card, the better, IIRC. Of course, I'm sure a lot has changed since then.
                    Definition: Racecar - a device that turns money into noise.

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                    • #11
                      Good luck - let us know how it goes.

                      sam

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                      • #12
                        I hate when people delete their posts... replies (like mine above) then cease to make sense..

                        sam

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                        • #13
                          I'm not sure what's going on here. I posted about another option to Linuxcnc for DIY CNC conversions. The person who told me about this option in a private message mentioned it was not information the manufacturer wanted released at this time. I called the manufacturer to inquire about the product. The sales rep described all he knew about it to me except pricing which hadn't been determined yet. He gave no indication at all the product was a secret or not to be discussed.

                          Now I see my postings was deleted. I did not delete it.

                          If I had any indication from the manufacturer the product was confidential at this time I would not have posted about it.

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                          • #14
                            I am the one that told DR about the board. I specifically told him not to publish to the web. That it was OK for me to share privately the info I had but not to publish. He decided to disregard and post. That is why the post is gone. It is no top secret about the board coming. The details about it and the software, etc. is not public yet.

                            He even states in his post above that he was told not to post about it but did anyway.
                            Location: The Black Forest in Germany

                            How to become a millionaire: Start out with 10 million and take up machining as a hobby!

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                            • #15
                              I hate closed source stuff...

                              anyway.

                              Linuxcnc has something called nativecam that is taking off.

                              https://www.youtube.com/channel/UCjO...86HyVrshTmiUBQ

                              A long thread about its creation
                              http://forum.linuxcnc.org/40-subrout...d?limitstart=0

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