FlexiSIGN® Key and Output Troubleshooting

Use the following information to help solve FlexiSIGN® ® hardware key and output problems.

General Output

The following are general troubleshooting guidelines:

§      Make sure the connections are tight and secure. Unplug each connection, remove any accumulated dust, then plug in the connection.

§      If a cable is several years old, replace it. The maximum life of a cable is 5 years.

§      Are any other programs trying to output to the same port? From Windows®, go to Start>Settings>Printers, then double-click on each printer that is set up. Ensure that no jobs are in a printer that is set to use the same port as the output device.

§      Does the problem still occur when choosing the Save to File option? This will help determine if there is a port/communication problem.

§      Output a small, simple file, such as a square. If that outputs correctly, what is the difference between this simple file and the one that does not work?

§      If using CASmate™ software, ensured that both the updated jobman.exe file and updated comm.drv file is installed.

Parallel Port Output

The following are parallel port troubleshooting guidelines:

§      Use an IEEE 1284 triple-shielded parallel cable with a maximum length of 2 meters (6 feet).

§      If the device is plugged into a hardware key, check the hardware key troubleshooting sections located below. A second LPT port may be required. The hardware key is automatically detected on any LPT port.

§      Use ECP (Enhanced Capabilities Port) communications by selecting that setup in Production Manager. Go to Setup>Setup Properties>Communication and turn off “Use Standard LPT Driver”.

NOTE: PhotoPrint™ Server™ 2.0 does not have this option. Go to Program File\PhotoPrint™ Server\Program\1284remove.exe, then click OK. This will substitute for the use of a standard LPT driver until the computer is restarted.

§      Use a standard LPT parallel port instead of an ECP parallel port. From the Start menu, click Settings>Control Panel>System. Go to the Device Manager tab and open Ports. Click LPT1, then click Properties. From the Driver tab, click Update Driver. Click the option “No, select driver from list”, then click Next. Click the option “Show all hardware” and click “(standard port types)” and “Printer Port”. Click Finish. A prompt advises to insert the Windows CD. Click the Close button, then click the Close button again.

§      If using Windows® 95, install the LPT955 update. The file resides on the FlexiSIGN®  6.5 CD as Util\LPT955\PRNT5UP.EXE.

§      Try using a different operating system. Windows NT® sends out data differently than Windows® 98, so one may operate correctly while the other has problems.

§      Check the BIOS (Basic I/O System) settings to ensure that the LPT parallel port is set to “Standard” or “AT”. Refer to the computer documentation for setting the BIOS each system is different.

Serial Port Output

The following are serial port troubleshooting guidelines:

§      If there are cutting problems, see if Poll Size works. This verifies if the devices are communicating.

§      If using a PIA cable, make sure it is connected to the modem port. It will work with the printer port, but is not as reliable.

NOTE: The PIA cable will not work with a USB-to-Serial adapter.

§      The USB PIA cable will not work with the Encad® Croma24™ wide-format inkjet printer.

§      Ensure the communication settings between the device and Production Manager match. This includes: Baud, Stop bits, Data bits, Parity, and Handshaking.

Plotting from DOS

NOTE: This procedure only works with plotters that use standard communications. Devices such as the Gerber Scientific® LMK will not work.

Create a square and go to plot the object, but instead of sending the job to the plotter, save it. When asked for a name, type testplot.plt and save it on drive C. Go to the Start menu and click Shut Down. Click Restart in the MS-DOS mode. At the C:\Windows> prompt, type cd… to change to the C:\> root directory. At the C:\> prompt, type copy test.plt lpt1.

NOTE: If the plotter is not connected to LPT1, replace lpt1 with whatever port the plotter is connected to.

Press ENTER. The job should plot.

If the job does not plot, there is a communication problem that prevents the data from getting to the plotter. If the job does plot, there is a software problem, or with the plotter software setup.

Checking Plot File

Import the testplot.plt plot file from the previous section if the device is HPGL (Hewlett-Packard Graphics Language). Most cutters support the HPGL standard. Follow these steps:

1.      Click Plot/Save to file in the Cut/Plot dialog box of the software being used.

2.      Save as a test.plt file.

3.      After saving the file, close the page and open a new one. Go to File, and import the test.plt file. Under Type of file, click HPGL.

4.      Import the test.plt file back into the document.

5.      The file should appear as it would be sent to the printer. If the job is incomplete when the file is imported, there may be a problem with the driver. If the job is complete when the file is imported, there may be a communications problem.

Macintosh Hardware Key

Macintosh® computers can use “box-shaped” or “bullet-shaped” hardware keys. The box-shaped hardware key will only work if the EvE INIT file is installed in the Extensions folder within the System Folder on the Macintosh hard disk. This extension is not installed by the FlexiSIGN® software, but it is located on the FlexiSIGN® CD-ROM in the Utilities folder.

NOTE: This extension is not compatible with Macintosh OS 9. If using OS 9, exchange this hardware key for a bullet-shaped or USB hardware key.

Try these other troubleshooting suggestions:

1.      If possible, move the hardware key on the ADB (Apple Desktop Bus) chain. Some Macintosh computers have two ADB ports.

2.      Disconnect all other ADB components except for the mouse and hardware key. A short in the keyboard or keyboard cable can cause hardware key problems.

3.      Make sure the connections are tight and secure. Unplug each connection, remove any accumulated dust, then plug in the connection.

There may be applications running in the background. Use Base Extensions to disable all other applications. In this mode, the operator can still run the software, but not scan, print, cut, desktop print, or see ATM fonts. On restart, all applications are restored.

Go to Control Panels>Extension Manager, click Mac OS Base, then click Restart. The next time the computer is started, it will use the Mac OS Base extensions until that setting is changed in the Extension Manager Control Panel.

This disables any virus, scanner, or other software until the computer is restarted. See if the problem still exists using the software in safe mode. If it does not, manually uninstall any other programs on the system that may conflict.

If using a USB or box-shaped ADB hardware key, install the latest key driver for Macintosh computers. The following software is required to recognize the hardware key. These are located on the on the FlexiSIGN® 6.5 CD-ROM:

Box-shaped Eve2 Key (Version 1.9)

Go to Utilities>EvE INIT.

USB Hardware Key (Version 2.1)

Go to Utilities>Eve32-1 Folder

The latest driver from Rainbow Technologies® can also be downloaded:

http://www.rainbow.com/tech/pub/tools/EVEINIT19N.hqx

http://www.rainbow.com/tech/Eve3/interfaces.html

Once the file is downloaded, decompress it, then run the installer.

An RMA (Return Manufacturing Authorization) can be issued and a new hardware key sent if nothing else resolves the problem. The hardware key is replaced free-of-charge for one year from the date of purchase (shipping is an additional charge). After the one-year date, there is a $50 charge for replacement, plus shipping.

Windows Hardware Key

FlexiSIGN® 5.x and FlexiSIGN® 6.x for Windows require that the user number be over 10,000. If the customer has an older hardware key with a four-digit number, that key will be recalled and a new hardware key issued.

NOTE: This does not apply to Macintosh hardware keys.

Try these other troubleshooting suggestions:

1.    Make sure that nothing is plugged into the LPT port before the hardware key. If an AB switchbox, another key, or a Zip® drive is attached, temporarily remove the items and see if that resolves the problem.

2.    Make sure that nothing is plugged into the LPT port after the hardware key. If a printer, another key, or a Zip drive is attached, temporarily remove the items and see if that resolves the problem.

3.    Make sure the connections are tight and secure. Unplug each connection, remove any accumulated dust, then plug in the connection.

4.    Install the hardware key driver for Windows. The following software is required to recognize the hardware key. These are located on the on the FlexiSIGN® 6.5 CD-ROM:

Rainbow Key (Version 5.38.2)

Windows 95/98: Util\Rainbow\WIN_9x\sentw9x.exe

Windows NT/2000: Util\Rainbow\WIN_NT\setupx86.exe

From the Functions menu, click Install Sentinel Driver. A Sentinel Install dialog box will appear; click OK. The driver will install and if successful, the message appears: “Driver Installed!” From the Functions menu, click Quit. Restart the system and see if that solves the problem.

The latest driver can also be downloaded:

http://www.rainbow.com/tech/download/drivers.html

Choose the Sentinel System Driver Download. Once the file is downloaded, decompress it. Run the installer based on the operating system in use:

Windows 95/98: WIN_9x\sentw9x.exe

Windows NT/2000: WIN_NT\setupx86.exe

NOTE: If using Windows NT or Windows 2000, log in as the administrator to install the Rainbow utility.

HASP Key (Version 3.99)

Windows: Util\Hasp\hdd32.exe

Double-click the EXE file and follow the directions as they appear on screen. Restart the system and see if that solves the problem.

The latest driver can also be downloaded:

http://www.aks.com/hasp/techfor/index.htm> (File is a Win32 GUI Installation Utility.)

Once the file is downloaded, decompress it. Run the application.

NOTE: If using Windows NT or Windows 2000, log in as the administrator to install the Rainbow utility.

5. There may be applications running in the background. Use Safe Mode to disable all other applications. In this mode, the operator can still run the software, but not scan, print, cut, desktop print, or see ATM fonts. On restart, all applications are restored.

Windows 95

Restart the computer, and when the message “Starting Windows” appears, press F8. A menu will appear. Click the Safe Mode option (option 3). After the computer is restarted, it will no longer be in Safe Mode.

Windows 98

Restart the computer, and when the message “Starting Windows” appears, press CTRL. A menu will appear. Click the Safe Mode option (option 3). After the computer is restarted, it will no longer be in Safe Mode.

Windows NT

Restart the computer, and click the Windows NT Workstation Version 4.00 [VGA mode] option. After the computer is restarted, it will no longer be in Safe Mode.

6. Try connecting the hardware key into another LPT port (LPT2). The key is automatically detected on any LPT port.

7. Set the system to use a standard LPT parallel port, rather than an ECP parallel port.

From the Start menu, select Settings>Control Panel>System. Go to the Device Manager tab and open Ports. Click LPT1, then click Properties. From the Driver tab, click Update Driver. Click the option “No, select driver from list”, then click Next. Click the option “Show all hardware” and click “(standard port types)” and “Printer Port”. Click Finish. A prompt advises to insert the Windows CD. Click the Close button, then click the Close button again.

8. Check the BIOS (Basic I/O System) settings to ensure that the LPT parallel port is set to “Standard” or “AT”. Refer to the computer documentation for setting the BIOS each system is different.

9. If using Windows® 95, install the LPT955 update. The file resides on the FlexiSIGN®  6.5 CD as Util\LPT955\PRNT5UP.EXE.

10. An RMA (Return Merchandise Authorization) can be issued and a new hardware key sent if nothing else resolves the problem. The hardware key is replaced free-of-charge for one year from the date of purchase (shipping is an additional charge). After the one-year date, there is a $50 charge for replacement, plus shipping.

Decompressing Files

After downloading a file from the Internet, it may have to be decompressed. Windows files are in .ZIP format and Macintosh files are in .SIT format. If there is no way to open the file, download a utility to accomplish it.

SIT Files: http://www.aladdinsys.com/expander/expander_mac_login.html

ZIP Files: http://winzip.com/downauto.cgi?winzip70.exe

General Troubleshooting

If the troubleshooting ideas listed do not solve the problem, check the procedures in the Troubleshooting Guide provided by Scanvec Amiable.

FlexiSIGN®

Macintosh and Windows

Public

ID # 311