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IndustryArena Forum > MetalWorking Machines > Milltronics > Milltronics with a full hot swap UPS thumb drive.
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  1. #1
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    Milltronics with a full hot swap UPS thumb drive.

    Hi all, after a long period of time (5 years on and off) I have come up with the right hardware and soft ware to be able to do a SBC (single board computer) update and have a full functionable USB for loading and saving programs. Hot swappable, not a power off, insert drive, load program, power off, remove drive, power back on. Hot swappable.
    This will work on C1, C5, C6 and C7 controls. up to 2 GB drives can be used, (DOS limit) bigger drives can be used but must be partitioned to 2GB.
    My aim to help eliminate the hard ship of networking DOS to windows 7/10 / to what ever is next.

    My question to you is, is this something you would be interested in and, if so at what price point?
    please let me know.

    sportybob

  2. #2
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    Re: Milltronics with a full hot swap UPS thumb drive.

    WOW, not a single reply ????
    sportybob

  3. #3
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    Re: Milltronics with a full hot swap UPS thumb drive.

    It seems like a much nicer upgrade. I'm wondering if most users haven't already fell into a "I'm ok with this" workaround system which makes it hard to feel the need to upgrade.

  4. #4
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    Re: Milltronics with a full hot swap UPS thumb drive.

    I have been doing SBC control updates for years and have a floppy emulator that uses a thumb drive, that is formatted to "look" like 100 floppy disks and have even written a program to be able to zip up about a 4.5MB cad cam file and load it into the control and unzip inside the control. very handy. But it still requires PC software to format the drive and uses 99 of the floppy disk "sectors" # 00 is always directly accessible. and that is OK. but for people that have larger files I have used a "multi function" drive that connects to the IDE port and uses compact flash, SD cards memory sticks and several other types of memory, but the #1 preferred source has been the thumb drive.


    Ask around, a full hot swappable 2 GB thumb drive running in MS DOS I don't believe anyone else has this on any CNC machine in the world !

    sportybob

  5. #5
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    Re: Milltronics with a full hot swap UPS thumb drive.

    Definately interesting to me - I have one of the usb floppy replacements like you describe - have not even tried installing it until I get the machine running mechanically. My old Ajax mill had a version of software that did not support usb - was able to upgrade the motherboard and install a later version of software to get USB support on that machine so I would love to be able to use a USB stick on the Milltonics when I get it up and running - Mine has a new single board computer upgrade from Milltronics - I seem to remember it having a USB port on the board, so I'm wondering if the hardware may already be there on mine - what all is involved in this upgrade? You mention a combination of hardware and software in the original post. Price point? I'm a cheap skate hobbyist so I want it cheap - lol! I would say it should be worth a little more to a shop - have you got any ideas what you would have to have? I know a mainboard update can't be cheap... Dan

  6. #6
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    Re: Milltronics with a full hot swap UPS thumb drive.

    Hi SEK, thanks for the feedback

    USB support is not "native" to MS DOS, MS did not have USB support until Win 98 SE, and then it was for mice, keyboard and some CD support.
    It was Win XP when all the USB stuff "took off".

    There are some DOS drivers out there that will allow you to boot to a thumb drive, and work from there, but to remove the drive you must power down, swap drives reboot the control. Kludge at best.
    As stated I have worked on "Hot swappable" USB drivers for over 5 years. It is also hardware dependent. Not all SBC computers have the needed hardware for the drivers. A USB port without a driver is useless.

    The hardware cost is about twice as much as my "normal" SBC update hardware.

    My "normal" SBC update is $1250. I am thinking that the SBC with Hot swap USB, would be about $2800. (about the cost of a regular SBC update from the "factory".

    one again I am looking for input.

    sportybob

  7. #7
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    Re: Milltronics with a full hot swap UPS thumb drive.

    Thanks for the info Bob - out of my price range as a hobbyist but certainly can't speak for shops. The guy I bought this machine from probably would have been interested since he really like the machine. Been building PC's since the DOS 5.0 286 days - first hard drive was a 40 mb IDE. I remember when USB came out - so yes aware that MS had no support for USB - had a machine running win 95 at that time. Had a heck of a time finding the right drivers to make USB ports on that pc work - Used to run AutoCAD version 10 on that 286 with a math coprocessor. I need to pull the numbers off of the mainboard and research what it is kinda looks like something Advantech would build at first glance. I need to make a backup of the flash card to have just in case...

  8. #8
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    Re: Milltronics with a full hot swap UPS thumb drive.

    That is am amazing feat Bob. I already have the SBC upgrade from Milltronics. So your upgrade does not sound worth it for just adding USB. Had this been an option three years ago I may have done it when I got my SBC upgrade.

    There has to be some here that will want this. I bet they have not read the forum since your post.

    Cheers
    SF

  9. #9
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    Re: Milltronics with a full hot swap UPS thumb drive.

    I agree that is a major accomplishment - and I understand why it is a "package" - in the DOS world so may drivers are chip set and software specific. I have done a little research on doing this and just about everything I found was full maybes or might works. To be able to make it work consistently is a huge accomplishment. Congratulations Bob.

  10. #10
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    Bob PM me. I would like to talk direct.

  11. #11
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    email direct
    emtsllc@embarqmail.com

    bob m

  12. #12
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    Re: Milltronics with a full hot swap UPS thumb drive.

    I'm curious if the key words to making this work is Intel, and UHCI.

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