PowerMAC communication to cytometer

Peter Chapple peterc at petermac.unimelb.edu.au
Thu Feb 13 13:47:23 EST 1997


We also have communications problems between the PowerMAC and cytometer - in our case the cytometer is a FACSCalibur, but I suspect a similar/same mechanism may be involved.

At the outset I must say that I have no proof of what I'm about to say ... only an observation I have made over many months.

It seems to me that the timing of when cytometer and computer are switched-on is very important in establishing the dialogue between the two. Obviously you power-up the cytometer first, but then the computer must follow within the next 1-4minutes (approx). If you do this then there is rarely a problem - if the cytometer has been powered-up for longer than 4ish minutes before the computer communications are unlikely to work!.

 It follows from this that if you are operating the instrument and the computers has one of those dreaded *error type 11* situations which obliges you to do a re-start on the computer - then it's necessary to power-down the cytometer as well and start from scratch :-(

These observations are true for the FACSCalibur - I'm presuming the same interface board resides in your FACSort

Hope this is useful 

Peter Chapple
Peter MacCallum Cancer Institute

>We recently upgraded our FACSort computer from an HP system to a PowerMac 7600.
>In general we have been happy with this, although CellQuest could still has
>some way to go to take advantage of all Macs have to offer (but is better than
>Lysis II in most ways).  However, we are having a sporadic, but persistent and
>annoying problem - when attempting to connect to the cytometer from Writing the
>program we often get a message saying that the cytometer cannot be found.
>This is despite turning the FACS on before the computer, etc.  This can go on
>for hours before it decides that the FACS really is there and lets us access it
>for acquisition.  BD suggested reloading the software, which had no effect, nor
>did rebuilding the desktop.  Our computer consultant has suggested that
>fragmentation of the hard disk is to blame, and that the recent high humidity
>in Sydney may also be implicated.

>Has anyone else had this problem with their Mac/FACS interface?  We use Macs
>exclusively in our institute (with the exception of the old HP) and the 7600 is
>networked but the harddisk cannot be accessed by other computers without first
>checking that the FACSort is not in use.  Any suggestions would be very

>Thanks in advance,

>Michelle Miller
>Johnson and Johnson Research Labs
>Sydney, Australia
>email: jjphar13 at angis.su.oz.au

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