Monday, November 15, 2010

Windows 7 for machine vision

How many of you have started using Windows 7 in your vision projects? My guess is that you’re just begining to, now that XP is no longer available on new PCs. (Okay, you can still get it if you ask very, very nicely, but to all intents and purposes we’re being forced to adopt the new OS.)
Well I’ve discovered there are a couple of features of 7 that might impact what you’re doing.

First, the old Firewire speed limitation is gone. You know how XP SP1 would let you run at no more than 400MB/s, and then SP2 dialed that back to 100? (There was a work around, but it was a PITA.) Well with Windows 7 that problem has gone away. Just plug in your Firewire B cameras and watch the data come flying through.

Now the bad news. No Hyperterminal. Hyperterminal was really useful for talking to simple motion control equipment, but now it’s gone. I’m sure someone has a workaround, so please post a comment and share.

The other interesting aspect of Windows 7 is of course the ability to move to a 64 bit operating system. That ought to eliminate a host of memory management issues, although I haven’t tried it myself. Again, if you have some experience to share, please use my handy-dandy “Comment” function.


Jakob Kirkegaard said...

I can recommend putty as a telnet and ssh client - far more powerful than the crappy Hyperterminal :)

Anonymous said...

Windows 7 is a good operating system but it doesn't offer much more than XP :( for machine vision. The firewire-b stuff is good. We have started deploying 32 bits Windows 7 systems. Before you get going you need to understand the nasty security bits of Windows-7. This is mainly UAC or User Account Control which in many cases is best turned off. The big promise of 64 bits will wait for me until camera drivers are really updated and working.