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Mini Network Farm , is it possible yet ?  

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BrettG
(@brettg)
Estimable Member
Mini Network Farm , is it possible yet ?

So after looking through numerous threads using google,

I'm still no closer to figuring out if its possible to connect a Lan network up with my 8 mini's through the ethernet port.

If it's not yet possible ? does anyone have a work around.

My mk3s+ is running off a pi4 using octiprint so I'm familiar with that but would be nice to also set up a Mini network. 

Posted : 21/06/2021 12:24 pm
cwbullet
(@cwbullet)
RE: Mini Network Farm , is it possible yet ?

I have 8 Mk3S and 4 Minis on an Ethernet connected farm through 12 Pi 4s.  I am currently connecting them with Octofarm.  

--------------------
Chuck H
3D Printer Review Blog...
Posted : 21/06/2021 1:59 pm
fuchsr, bobstro and BrettG liked
BrettG
(@brettg)
Estimable Member
Topic starter answered:
RE: Mini Network Farm , is it possible yet ?
Posted by: @cwbullet

I have 8 Mk3S and 4 Minis on an Ethernet connected farm through 12 Pi 4s.  I am currently connecting them with Octofarm.  

So Its a matter of having to get a Pi per machine something like a Raspberry Pi Zero W not sure I fancy paying out more for the Pi4 if its not required performance wise,

then do you Daisy chain them or run them back to a hub and if so which would you recommend please.

thanks for the response, 

 

Posted : 21/06/2021 2:32 pm
MKEMike
(@mkemike)
Eminent Member
RE: Mini Network Farm , is it possible yet ?

@brettg

   Right now, you can put all 8 on the network, browse to their IP addresses (from your own network only) and get basic status info such as temperatures, printing times, print speed and flow rate for the current print.  Once Prusa releases PrusaConnect, you'll be able to see and control all of your printers via a unified dashboard, versus each printer separately with OctoPrint.   Take a look at 0:23 on this video which they just released today for a sneak peak of the user interface.  From this and comments in recent Prusa Live videos, it sounds like they're real close to releasing it. 

   But, to answer your question on using Pi Zero W.   The OctoPi distribution of OctoPrint says that they specifically don't support the Zero, but I have heard of people using them.  I think the key is really keeping the CPU and WiFi utilization down by not loading up a bunch of plugins and not having it stream a camera or taking snapshots.  I prefer to just run a $25 Wyze camera pointing at my Mini and Wanhao I3 (which isn't seeing much use since getting the Mini) and keeping the processing and bandwidth on the Pi boxes just for running OctoPi.  That also allows be to see the video of the printers working while out of the house (via the Wyze app) without having to set up a VPN or expose my OctoPi boxes to the internet.  If I see a print failing, I can always just call home and have my wife or one of the kids turn off the affected printer until I get back.

   I have been running OctoPi on an original Raspberry Pi 3b, and AstroPrint (basically a fork off of OctoPrint with cloud management for multiple printers) on another one for years with no problem.   I love AstroPrint, and really only changed to OctoPrint because since moving to  PrusaSlicer, I wasn't using the cloud management piece, didn't need their Cura slicing,  and wanted to play with something different. Once I get my second Mini in, I'll either switch back to AstroPrint, use PrusaConnect if it is out, or add OctoFarm to control another OctoPi box.

    That said, if buying new, I would go for the Pi 4 which has twice the memory and a faster processor for the same $35 price.  Of course, if you order a Pi 4, you might as well also get a Zero W for $10 also and see how it works with OctoPi for you.  If it works well, then you'll save $25 per each of the remaining 7 printers, and can use the Pi 4 to run the OctoFarm front-end.

Posted : 25/06/2021 11:43 pm
BrettG liked
MichaelK
(@michaelk)
Eminent Member
RE: Mini Network Farm , is it possible yet ?

@mkemike

With the Pi 4 , you should be able to run multiple instances of Octopi, and control more than 1 printer per Pi

Posted : 28/06/2021 4:40 am
BrettG liked
BrettG
(@brettg)
Estimable Member
Topic starter answered:
RE: Mini Network Farm , is it possible yet ?
Posted by: @mkemike

@brettg

   Right now, you can put all 8 on the network, browse to their IP addresses (from your own network only) and get basic status info such as temperatures, printing times, print speed and flow rate for the current print.  Once Prusa releases PrusaConnect, you'll be able to see and control all of your printers via a unified dashboard, versus each printer separately with OctoPrint.   Take a look at 0:23 on this video which they just released today for a sneak peak of the user interface.  From this and comments in recent Prusa Live videos, it sounds like they're real close to releasing it. 

   But, to answer your question on using Pi Zero W.   The OctoPi distribution of OctoPrint says that they specifically don't support the Zero, but I have heard of people using them.  I think the key is really keeping the CPU and WiFi utilization down by not loading up a bunch of plugins and not having it stream a camera or taking snapshots.  I prefer to just run a $25 Wyze camera pointing at my Mini and Wanhao I3 (which isn't seeing much use since getting the Mini) and keeping the processing and bandwidth on the Pi boxes just for running OctoPi.  That also allows be to see the video of the printers working while out of the house (via the Wyze app) without having to set up a VPN or expose my OctoPi boxes to the internet.  If I see a print failing, I can always just call home and have my wife or one of the kids turn off the affected printer until I get back.

   I have been running OctoPi on an original Raspberry Pi 3b, and AstroPrint (basically a fork off of OctoPrint with cloud management for multiple printers) on another one for years with no problem.   I love AstroPrint, and really only changed to OctoPrint because since moving to  PrusaSlicer, I wasn't using the cloud management piece, didn't need their Cura slicing,  and wanted to play with something different. Once I get my second Mini in, I'll either switch back to AstroPrint, use PrusaConnect if it is out, or add OctoFarm to control another OctoPi box.

    That said, if buying new, I would go for the Pi 4 which has twice the memory and a faster processor for the same $35 price.  Of course, if you order a Pi 4, you might as well also get a Zero W for $10 also and see how it works with OctoPi for you.  If it works well, then you'll save $25 per each of the remaining 7 printers, and can use the Pi 4 to run the OctoFarm front-end.

Thanks Mike so much for the detailed response, lets hope it is around the corner then. 

Posted : 28/06/2021 8:31 am
BrettG
(@brettg)
Estimable Member
Topic starter answered:
RE: Mini Network Farm , is it possible yet ?
We're currently beta testing, still a lot of improvments and bug fixing to be done, but we're making good progress. 🙂 
Hard to tell the exact timeline.
 
 
This post was modified 7 months ago by BrettG
Posted : 28/06/2021 8:47 am
cwbullet
(@cwbullet)
RE: Mini Network Farm , is it possible yet ?

@brettg

Where did he say that?

--------------------
Chuck H
3D Printer Review Blog...
Posted : 28/06/2021 9:13 am
BrettG
(@brettg)
Estimable Member
Topic starter answered:
RE: Mini Network Farm , is it possible yet ?
Posted by: @cwbullet

@brettg

Where did he say that?

It's in the comments on that youtube link for the 8 improvements 

Posted : 28/06/2021 12:08 pm
cwbullet
(@cwbullet)
RE: Mini Network Farm , is it possible yet ?

@brettg

Thank you.  I watched the video and did not see it.  I had to expand the comments.  I really hope Prusa Connect works on an Pi4.   IT has been upsetting that the beta has taken this long.  

--------------------
Chuck H
3D Printer Review Blog...
Posted : 28/06/2021 6:00 pm
BrettG liked
djkirkendall
(@djkirkendall)
Trusted Member
RE: Mini Network Farm , is it possible yet ?

I have around 80 FDM printers of various makes/models. I use a 1:1 RPi3B+ for all, set on a closed network with hubs/switches/Cat 7 with a NAS for file storage. I like the 3B+ for power consumption, with rfkill block wifi/bluetooth to reduce it down to LAN traffic only. 

I personally like the Octoprint/OctoFarm setup as I can swap out a manufacturer with another without losing the network attachment. It seems Octoprint supports just about every FDM printer out there. If I decide the Minis are going to the local school and being replaced with something more Creality based, I leave the Pi behind and connect the new printer with ease. 

Of my 80 FDM machines, the Mini comprises 36 of them. Even if PrusaConnect were to exceed the capabilities of OP/OF, I'd still keep my current config for the sake of cross-manufacturer communication. 

 

My .02

...
Posted : 09/07/2021 8:12 pm
bobstro liked
bobstro
(@bobstro)
Illustrious Member
RE: Mini Network Farm , is it possible yet ?
Posted by: @djkirkendall

[...] Of my 80 FDM machines, the Mini comprises 36 of them. Even if PrusaConnect were to exceed the capabilities of OP/OF, I'd still keep my current config for the sake of cross-manufacturer communication. 

I take it you don't agree that the Mini is not suitable for use in a farm? Got any pics of your setup you are willing to share?

My notes and disclaimers on 3D printing and miscellaneous other tech projects
He is intelligent, but not experienced. His pattern indicates two dimensional thinking. -- Spock in Star Trek: The Wrath of Khan...
Posted : 09/07/2021 9:22 pm
MKEMike
(@mkemike)
Eminent Member
RE: Mini Network Farm , is it possible yet ?

@cwbullet

    From last week's Prusa Live, Prusa Connect will be all online. It looks like the only Pi needed would be a Zero W to convert from WiFi to the UART pins on a MK3 since it doesn't have a network port or WiFi itself.  The user interface is all web-based, so hitting it from a Pi or tablet with a standard browser should not be a problem. 

Posted : 09/07/2021 10:05 pm
cwbullet
(@cwbullet)
RE: Mini Network Farm , is it possible yet ?

@mkemike

Any idea when it will be released?  

--------------------
Chuck H
3D Printer Review Blog...
Posted : 09/07/2021 10:06 pm
MKEMike
(@mkemike)
Eminent Member
RE: Mini Network Farm , is it possible yet ?

@djkirkendall

80 printers and 36 are Minis?  Do you have a number of different brands and models besides the Minis?  What are your thoughts on them vs the other printers you're running?  What do you typically print?  Are you doing large quantities of a few parts or smaller quantities with greater variety?  Do you tend to keep individual printers dedicated and tweaked to certain colors / materials / parts ?  Other than size, are you finding certain printer models better at printing particular parts than others? 

 

Posted : 09/07/2021 10:18 pm
MKEMike
(@mkemike)
Eminent Member
RE: Mini Network Farm , is it possible yet ?

They were really avoiding the question of a release date.  They were saying that they're in a very early beta testing with a few large farms right now, figuring that they get the bugs ironed out for the few big users first, there won't be much left by the time they get to a general release. 

I happen to work in engineering support for a specialized software and service that has a good mix of customers going from 100 to 100,000 seats, and I can see the pro s and cons of that approach for betas.  The biggest customers tend to have techs and admins dedicated to our systems and related 3rd-party hardware and software.  They know it very well, so they're easier to support, especially on new features and integrations.  On the other hand, when they have any problems, they're more urgent because they're bigger.  Still, there's always some edge cases that you're just never going to see until a new release is in the hands (and networks) of hundreds of customers that all use it slightly differently.

 

Posted : 09/07/2021 10:45 pm
djkirkendall
(@djkirkendall)
Trusted Member
RE: Mini Network Farm , is it possible yet ?

@bobstro

As shipped, not at all. I had to redesign the chain of custody from the spool to the nozzle, put up 36 "SuperPINDAs" and design a spool holder that doesn't suck. 

I'm still waiting for the RC2 to go official to open up the filament sensors. After my redesign they are finally moving plastic at a rate/reliability I would have expected out of the box. 

I'm still dealing with the random serial disconnect bug.... don't get me started. 

...
Posted : 09/07/2021 11:40 pm
djkirkendall
(@djkirkendall)
Trusted Member
RE: Mini Network Farm , is it possible yet ?

double tap post

This post was modified 6 months ago by djkirkendall
...
Posted : 09/07/2021 11:41 pm
djkirkendall
(@djkirkendall)
Trusted Member
RE: Mini Network Farm , is it possible yet ?

@mkemike

Modified Ender 3's, Modified CR-10's, Prusa MK3S+, Prusa Minis

Also have Form 2's, MARS, Transform, and Saturn on the SLA/MSLA side of the shop.

I print mostly portrait art, all original artwork. I think I have over 170 subjects in my library now. 

...
Posted : 09/07/2021 11:44 pm
djkirkendall
(@djkirkendall)
Trusted Member
RE: Mini Network Farm , is it possible yet ?
Posted by: @brettg
Posted by: @mkemike

@brettg

   Right now, you can put all 8 on the network, browse to their IP addresses (from your own network only) and get basic status info such as temperatures, printing times, print speed and flow rate for the current print.  Once Prusa releases PrusaConnect, you'll be able to see and control all of your printers via a unified dashboard, versus each printer separately with OctoPrint.   Take a look at 0:23 on this video which they just released today for a sneak peak of the user interface.  From this and comments in recent Prusa Live videos, it sounds like they're real close to releasing it. 

   But, to answer your question on using Pi Zero W.   The OctoPi distribution of OctoPrint says that they specifically don't support the Zero, but I have heard of people using them.  I think the key is really keeping the CPU and WiFi utilization down by not loading up a bunch of plugins and not having it stream a camera or taking snapshots.  I prefer to just run a $25 Wyze camera pointing at my Mini and Wanhao I3 (which isn't seeing much use since getting the Mini) and keeping the processing and bandwidth on the Pi boxes just for running OctoPi.  That also allows be to see the video of the printers working while out of the house (via the Wyze app) without having to set up a VPN or expose my OctoPi boxes to the internet.  If I see a print failing, I can always just call home and have my wife or one of the kids turn off the affected printer until I get back.

   I have been running OctoPi on an original Raspberry Pi 3b, and AstroPrint (basically a fork off of OctoPrint with cloud management for multiple printers) on another one for years with no problem.   I love AstroPrint, and really only changed to OctoPrint because since moving to  PrusaSlicer, I wasn't using the cloud management piece, didn't need their Cura slicing,  and wanted to play with something different. Once I get my second Mini in, I'll either switch back to AstroPrint, use PrusaConnect if it is out, or add OctoFarm to control another OctoPi box.

    That said, if buying new, I would go for the Pi 4 which has twice the memory and a faster processor for the same $35 price.  Of course, if you order a Pi 4, you might as well also get a Zero W for $10 also and see how it works with OctoPi for you.  If it works well, then you'll save $25 per each of the remaining 7 printers, and can use the Pi 4 to run the OctoFarm front-end.

Thanks Mike so much for the detailed response, lets hope it is around the corner then. 

Octoprint is just a middleman, I use OctoFarm as the unified dashboard. I rarely jump into a Pi nowadays unless I'm troubleshooting. 

Site: https://github.com/OctoFarm/OctoFarm

 

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Posted : 10/07/2021 12:14 am
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