I am researching FREE software for my new LongMill that is on the way. I came across LinuxCNC. Anyone using it? How about Carbide Create?
These are two very different kinds of software.
LinuxCNC is a G-CODE interpreter and driver that drives a controller directly, so would not be able to drive a grbl controller like that used in the LongMill.
Carbide Create is a CAD/CAM program that allows you to use the CAD function to design your project and the CAM that compiles that into G-CODE. You then need a G-CODE sender (such as UGS) to send the produced G-CODE to the LongBoard which then actually drives the CNC machine.
I’ve used LinuxCNC in the past. The main limitation is to have a machine with good latency characteristics. Interestingly enough, the newest, multi-threaded CPUs have horrible latency for real-time. An old Intel 386 machine with a parallel port runs rings around just about anything more modern and LinuxCNC runs well on those. The LinuxCNC site has, if you dig a bit, a list of machines that have been tested and the latency measured with each. I now refuse to use this piece of software, no matter how fully-fledged it is, because I don’t want yet another machine that I may or may not be able to replace in the future.
The LongBoard uses an Arduino, which is puny compared to today’s computer systems, but is able to drive the LongMill very well.
Yeah I figured LinuxCNC wouldn’t work.