HELP! Up the creek without a paddle!!!

signpronfl

New Member
A little background information:
I bought a plotter and flexi about a year ago. I have had minimal issues until now. I WAS running flexi 7.0 on Windows XP. My plotter is a Roland PNC-960. I design on both flexi and adobe CS4.

I had a month or so I did not use the plotter. I go to use it today and nothing. Nothing I sent from flexi would cut on my plotter. I call roland and they were very helpfull. We reset the machine and it appears that the plotter works fine. The roland tech says it must be flexi. I call SAi and they offer me a couple of solutions.
1) Windows XP Service Pack 3 causes issues with Flexi 7.0. I needed to revert back to Service Pack 2.
2) Firewall is blocking Flexi from communicating with the plotter. Cancel the firewalls.

I tried both and they did not fix it. So I call SAi agian and the next tech says he will send me a link to download 7.6. He told me to uninstall 7.0 and install 7.6. He said that it should fix my problem, I do as he says. While it is installing 7.6 it asks for my ?user number? and the product key. I do not know where to find that so I call back. They tell me where to look and this new tech says that my user number is either a demo or a crack version. He informs me there is nothing they can do for me. I explain it was bought second-hand with a plotter and it did not matter. I go ahead and try the key I have and 7.6 says invalid product key. I did have the forethought to copy the Flexi7.0 on a flash drive in case something went wrong. I reinstall 7.0 and try it, it still does not work but now it pops up a message that a firewall maybe blocking communication with the production manager. I can test cut from the production manager but that is it. The problem seems to be between flexi and the production manager.

Also, I downloaded all new drivers for the plotter and reinstalled it. I tried different ports and that did not help.

So here I am 11:30pm on a friday night stressed about what to do, customers waiting on signs and no Flexi. I can get by with designing in Illustrator but I need to be able to cut vinyl. I have no other program to run the plotter. Can you guys help me out. I really do not need to be spending +4K for a new Flexi right now. I saw that Roland makes a program that comes with their current cutters called cutstudio. Will that work? Can you help me figure out what is going on with the program?

Thanks in advance.
 

signpronfl

New Member
Thanks so far for your help. I will try the trials for short term solution. Any ideas on how to get my Flexi running? Eventhough I can use Illustrator to design, Flexi is so much faster when it comes to designing signs. What is everyone out there using?
 

signgal

New Member
We've had similar communication problems with flexi to plotter. I'm sure you've checked in to all that but I can't understand why suddenly it would just not work. You shouldn't have needed an update if it's just suddenly not working.
 

signgal

New Member
my tech guy mostly LOL We have a "plotter" computer and a design computer, both networked to the plotter. I can't remember how it happened but for some reason one of them just couldn't find the plotter anymore. We've had issues as simple as the router not performing properly. But I think the time I'm referring to, we had to create a new path or something. Have you tried connecting it a different way or to different computers? Just to test it? Ours is a dinosaur and uses the multi-pin do-hickey. We had no choice but when the design computer wouldn't send to it either, that's how we figured out the issue.

I don't know if that helps...
 

signpronfl

New Member
Signgal,
Part of my problem is that the Roland is so old(I found out in this fiasco that it is 13 years old) the drivers are not working in Windows 7 which is what my design computer runs. I have no other computer to try it on. The plotter has a serial plug to usb plug. That is how I have it connected to the plotter computer.
 

skyhigh

New Member
So your version of Flexi is either a cracked version or a demo, and you want us to help you continue to use it? Sorry, no advice here. Gotta pony up for a legitimate copy, or go after the person that sold you the cutter/software package.

Your only options at this point are to buy the flexi product (you like it, but not $4k worth), or spend a couple hundred for something like cocut. Have you checked out Flexi starter? I don't know what the cost, but I do know its cheaper. Only guessing, but I think you will be disappointed in either option, but it will get your cutter working.
 

signage

Member
Try going into your firewall and setting permission to allow app.exe & app2.exe! You should also be able to cut directly from Ill. to your roland as long as you get the windows driver!
 

signpronfl

New Member
skyhigh,
I understand your position on the crack/demo situation. You bring up something I have been thinking about, I am unsure if there is a comparable program to flexi at a lower cost. I would hate to spend a couple hundred for a program that stinks. I also understand you get what you pay for. The problem for me is the sudden 4k expense for flexi was not what I needed right now. I also need to be able to operate without wasting a bunch of time every time I need to cut some vinyl.

Signage- I have both app.exe and app2.exe listed in the exception list for the firewall.

Thanks
 

signpronfl

New Member
Thanks skyhigh,

I have seen that program name before and never looked at it before. It looks like flexi a lot. It may work, I appreciate the help.

Signage- It is still not working. I have not tried the demo software yet. I will give it a shot later today.

Side note: Does anyone know if SAi sells flexi to universities and educators? I doubt it, but just a question. Maybe I can own a cadillac for the price of a kia :)
 

907customs

New Member
I think I have an older version of LXI (from Sign Warehouse) with the dongle key that I'm no longer using. I'll be back to the shop this evening and can check if you're interested I'd sell it for a couple hundred bucks. It will work fine on XP, for cutting, no printing options.

Ken
 

Fred Weiss

Merchant Member
1. You can find out very quickly if you have a cracked copy of Flexi by whether or not you have an LPT dongle which is what version 7 used for a legal copy to secure it. Cracked copies do not need the dongle but cannot be upgraded. If you have a legal copy of version 7, you can upgrade it to FlexiExpert 8.5 for $795 or to FlexiSign Pro for $1,195. That would get you a version that will run on Windows 7.

2. If you are only cutting and not printing, you do not need the full FlexiSign Pro. FlexiExpert is likely your best solution and lists for $2,495.00.

3. Vinyl Express LXI Master is a private label version of FlexiExpert and lists for $2,295.00.
 

signpronfl

New Member
Thanks

Thanks all for your help. I got cocut trial to work. It is very different from using Flexi, but it got the job done. Now I can have some time to make some decisions and the customers can get their signs on time. Anyone with LEGAL flexi or LXI for sale please let me know. This forum has been great, once agian thanks.

Doug
 
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