Parallel PCIE card in macpro?

Discussion in 'Mac Pro' started by NEUengineer, Apr 26, 2012.

  1. NEUengineer macrumors member

    Feb 11, 2010
    I need a parallel port in my '06 macpro in order to run a controller card for the CNC mill I'm making. I will be using boot camp to run the software Mach3. Has anybody tried using a parallel card on a windows OS?

    The card I need to talk to is called "5 Axis CNC Breakout Board For Stepper Driver Controller" on eBay. Not sure how long the link below will work.
  2. Neodym macrumors 68000


    Jul 5, 2002
    If you run Windows via BootCamp you have basically a "normal" PC being seen by Windows. As long as the parallel port card you are looking for will come with its own drivers you should be on the safe side. OSX may complain about an unknown card in the system profiler, but it should not affect normal operation.

    May i nevertheless ask (out of curiosity) why you want to waste the MacPro running Windows in a milling environment if you could as well put some $50 junk PC to the task? I could understand it if it was about some OSX-specific software, but as you're running Windows anyway...?!
  3. NEUengineer thread starter macrumors member

    Feb 11, 2010
    I like the idea of using my MP because:

    1. I already have boot camp up and running on it.
    2. The parallel cards on newegg are only $15-20.
    3. I'll be making my parts in Solidworks, which needs the power of the MP for modeling.

    That being said, the thought did cross my mind. However, if it'll work just as well in the MP it's easier to just pop in a PCIE card and call it a day. I'm skeptical though, since every time I do something windows based, it takes about 10 times longer than it "should".
  4. bengle3rt macrumors member

    Jul 11, 2008
    NEU like Northeastern U? If so, hi, I'm in CS :)

    I wouldn't run a Mac Pro in a machine-shop type environment, especially if it's going to be sitting on the floor, because there are lots of nasty things that it could suck in through the front fans - metal filings, for example, which could cause a short and destroy the computer.

    Get a less well-ventilated PC or put the Mac Pro up high.
  5. NEUengineer thread starter macrumors member

    Feb 11, 2010
    Yup, as in Northeastern. CS as in central square?

    I wouldn't dare run my MP in a machine shop. When I actually get this project working I might have to get another computer. At the moment, I just need something reliable to figure out how to do the programming, getting the electronics in order etc.

    My mini-lathe currently resides on a bench in my bedroom, so ya... Space is limited in my Cambridge apt. And pulling chips out of the carpet? Ugh... Fortunately my plastic shielding arrived yesterday, so this weekend I'm making a chip-guard enclosure for the entire lathe.

    Not sure where I'll actually build the mill as it will be too heavy to lift by myself. Obviously not in my bedroom. I have yet to met women who are turned on by the smell of cutting fluid.
  6. bengle3rt macrumors member

    Jul 11, 2008
    CS as in computer science. West Village H.
  7. ClassObject macrumors 6502


    Mar 1, 2010
    I'd run a 2006 Mac pro in a machine shop. Its just a computer and it's old. I say do it.

Share This Page