I've cut the CADCAM maintenance umbilicus; let's see how it goes!
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  1. #1
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    Default I've cut the CADCAM maintenance umbilicus; let's see how it goes!

    Hi All:
    I got myself a refurbished Dell T7610 beast with Win 7 Pro, loaded Solidworks and HSMWorks onto it and yanked the internet umbilicus.
    No more upgrades no more shit that stops working when Microcrap does an "update", no viruses, no spy ware, no data mining, no cloud computing and NO MORE MAINTENANCE.

    Keith is laughing at me; he prefers to be current on everything and doesn't mind spending time and money to do so...I'm a Luddite old fart that hates when shit just stops working and I have to fuck around with it to fix it, especially when I'm in a hurry (which is always).
    I hate it even worse when I have no frickin' idea how to fix it (which is almost always)

    I don't give a crap about upgrades and having the most current version; I picked a nice stable combination I know runs smoothly and I froze the little bastard in time forevermore.

    I had to upgrade my Solidworks license to a network license for an extra two grand so I could get a Home Use License to put on the CAD CAM box (which DOES live at home where I prefer to do my design work).
    The Dell box cost me $1300.00 USD.
    HSMWorks allows you to run a home copy on your single seat (I have a perpetual license) so I can program at home and dump the results into Dropbox with a thumb drive .

    So this is the plan:
    I keep the Solidworks license current and download a current version onto my utility box that's still on the net whenever a new version comes out.
    I do that so I can still work fluently with customer files.
    When I'm ready to program I make a STEP file and bring that into the CADCAM box, then turn it back into a dumb Sworks file of the version I'm running on the CADCAM box (SW2015)
    I walk away from upgrading and maintaining my HSMWorks license after the end of 2018.
    I clone the hard drive now that I have it up and running nicely so I have a fallback position if my hard drive ever takes a dump.

    I do all my file management on the utility box that's been cloned too, so I can go back to a decently clean version whenever the utility box starts to bloat and have a backup SW/HSM combo there too if that drive shits the bed.

    My CADCAM box stays pristine.
    I transfer virus scanned files to and from the CADCAM box using a thumb drive...no network, no server; technologically right back in the stone age where I LIKE it!!

    We'll see how it goes for me...I of course, expect all my computer related problems to just magically GO AWAY now.
    Will I be laughing or will Keith be laughing...I'd love to hear all opinions and don't be shy about snarky criticisms...I can take it!

    Cheers

    Marcus
    Implant Mechanix • Design & Innovation > HOME
    Vancouver Wire EDM -- Wire EDM Machining

  2. #2
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    I started reading this thread and was like, "who is this crazy old man?", then I scrolled down and saw it was Marcus, so it's OK. I will tell one anecdote: We got the Omax waterjet in 2007 with a Windows XP computer and it is not on the network, so we bring files on USB. Well it's been 11 years and it hasn't had one Windows update, the only upgrades have been to the Omax software up to the last version that runs on XP, which is almost still current. And it has been totally fine!! It still boots much faster than any windows computer I know. If we have to replace it I'm going to get another computer direct from Omax with a super clean windows install on it as the lack of vendor bloatware is also an advantage.

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    Just know that if you're sharing USBs between machines, they both need to be disconnected from the internet for the level of safety you're after. And they both need to be isolated from other USB drives, too, that may have been on computers that have been on the net. All part of the new digital paranoia.

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  5. #4
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    Quote Originally Posted by Chip Chester View Post
    Just know that if you're sharing USBs between machines, they both need to be disconnected from the internet for the level of safety you're after. And they both need to be isolated from other USB drives, too, that may have been on computers that have been on the net. All part of the new digital paranoia.
    I second that. There is a lot of malware which seeks out any and all other drives then propagates itself so please, Marcus, make sure to keep decent anti-malware software up to date on your other computers. I'm assuming if, by some magical stretch or reality, you actually have any anti-malware on your "isolated" box that it is most likely decades old like the rest of your system. Modern malware will eat up and take over that poor old computer faster than you can say "well that's acting weird". Although at that point you can take solace that you are not directly connected to a network and you are safe. Although at some point reality sets in and you realize, to your horror, that in the mean time your other computers have been massively infected and have been taking part in a huge Belarusian bot net being run by Russian shit bags drunk on potato vodka and smoking cheap, unfiltered cigarettes.

  6. #5
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    I did basically the same thing about 7 years ago for the same reasons. I had 4 workstations running Mastercam and Autocad and Inventor all tied to a server. My IT guy maintained the server, but the workstaions stayed off the internet and remained bug free. I was the only one who put drawings from customers on the server that could be accessed by the workstations. I just in the last 6 months was pretty much forced to upgrade Mastercam ( new mill turn Y axis live tooled lathe), so put in all new workstaions (windows 10) , 2018 Mastercam (5 seats 3D mill, lathe, wire EDM), and Autocad and Inventor. Now that its all running, I told my MasterCAm distributor I am not renewing maintenance contract. Auto CAD and Inventor are subscription based, but I will avoid updating if I can. I absolutely understand the frustrationa and PITA of trying to keep everything playing together nicely. I couldn't justify the lost time to do it, didn't want or need the upgrades until recently. Yeah it was expensive to upgrade everything, but I'm certain it was not as expensive as keeping everything current if you count all the lost time fixixng stuff at every upgrade. I'm now locking things down for the next 7 -8 years I hope.

  7. #6
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    I should add about USB sticks that the computers from where our files come are managed by institutional IT departments who have entire groups of staff pretty much only worried about malware.

  8. #7
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    Hope it works as well as the version of SW2006 I have on a windows XP machine dedicated to that purpose!!

  9. #8
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    Your computer/cad/cam combo is a tool. If updating the tool does not make the job easier, then don't do it.
    I will always stay current as I feel being connected and up to date makes me more efficient, which covers any costs.


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