Dear 3D Printer Vendors,
Please, please, please for the love of all, please add a single paragraph to the top of your software installation page:
" If you plan on controlling your printer from a PC running Linux, please note that most Linux distributions cannot work with the stock firmware on our printer. You must either update the printer’s firmware, or the operating system so that they can communicate with each other."
Separately, it would be nice if there was some jumperable option to set the comm speed, so that it’s easy to fall back to, say, 115,200.
This week has been a big fail in setting up a netbook to drive a 3D printer using OSS. First problem was in getting a suitable netbook distro to work on a donated machine. After spending an equivalent of a full day, I had EasyPeasy running on an Asus 1000, fixed the wifi driver problems, and sorted out package dependencies for RepetierHost, and then fixed the WM-quirk that made RepetierHost unusable (due to a bad interaction with Maximus).
Then after all that, I go to plug the netbook in to the printer. And then I find out that 250,000 bps is not supported “out of the box” on most Linux distro’s. I finally gave up.
Yes, I could install an alternate firmware on the controller to change the port speed. But after about 10 hours sunk into this, I don’t want to deal with this anymore. And I usually love fixing technical problems.
Since the equipment is going into a makerspace, I don’t “own” the equipment nor the management of it – so anything that requires continual fiddling is not going to cut it.
I’m going to be running the printer under Windows or MacOS, instead. When I first set it up with Windows, it took all of 5 minutes because RepetierHost bundled its dependencies in the installer, and because the comm port support worked without fiddling.
I just wish there was some warning before I (and the next guys) embarked on this. Apparently, if you Google around enough, you can eventually find some posts talking about this problem.