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gSender 1.4.0 Release – Rotary, grblHAL, Jobs Stats and More 

gSender 1.4.0 is now released, officially supporting grblHAL, rotary cutting and much much more!

The official theme for this update was fundamentals, which means improving and iterating on existing features to address any shortcomings, reliability issues, or add long requested functionalities.

As always, thank you to everyone involved in using, testing and giving feedback on Edge releases over the past 4 months. We’ve been working hard to address your feedback and are excited to bring these new features over to the general userbase!

Without further ado, let’s get into this update!

A New Spin on Carving – Rotary Support

Turning to some positive news, we’re finally bringing support for Rotary axes on both grbl and grblHAL based controllers into gSender! Whether you own the Sienci Vortex or some other rotary solution, gSender has you covered in everything you might want to do.

Once enabled in preferences, the user is able to control, probe, surface and carve using the A axis!

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We’ve also updated the visualizer to better show the final result – so you can see your A-axis carving in all it’s glory!

Pushing Your Buttons – Better Gamepad Functionality

We’ve expanded and changed how gamepad works to give the user a whole host of new options for controlling their machine.

Joysticks are now able to jog the machine along any axis with variable speeds based on how far you’re moving the joystick.

We’ve added a new MPG mode which will let the user jog in a specific direction by rotating the joystick similar to physical MPG units.

There is also new alt modifiers for gamepad buttons, letting you map multiple functionalities to a specific button. Users are also able to assign a lockout button, preventing any gamepad buttons from firing until it is unlocked again.

Finally, we’ve altered the workflow for setting up a gamepad, letting the user map an action to a button instead of the opposite. We hope this lets users set up their new controllers quickly and easily and get back to cutting.

What did I just do? In-depth Job Stats and Maintenance Reminders

We’ve greatly expanded the job stats section to give you even more information about past jobs. Not only do we now track time run per com port, there is more in-depth tracking of individual jobs and any problems encountered.

We’ve also added maintenance reminders to keep you on track for keeping your machine in tip-top shape. Reminders are set up with expected run time before needing completion, and once you’ve approached that warning you’ll start to get reminders. Maintenance reminders are entirely customizable – set up your own tasks to keep on top of anything personal to your workflow.

Some Old Favourites and New Favourites

We’ve brought back code blocks for tool change to much fanfare!

Remote mode has received a number of improvements, including workflow controls and unit selection on the remote interface on phone screen size and a QR code in-app for easier navigation on your handheld device.

We’ve also added an easier way to go to a specific location – clicking the Go To button will now let you select a incremental or absolute position to move your machine to.

Touch Wherever You Want – Multi-corner Probing

No longer a one-trick pony, gSender now supports probing off any corner of your workpiece using both standard and auto-zero touchplates!

Selecting which corner you want is as easy as clicking a button – simply press the corner selector and the probe routine will automatically update offsets to both run and set the zero correctly at the selected corner!

Technical Notes – 32 bit no longer supported

We are officially dropping support for 32bit versions of gSender. It was a hard decision but continuing to support 32bit was a security concern for several libraries we use and we can’t be shackled long term to out of date libraries without alternatives. Version 1.2.2 should continue to work fine for the small subset of users (sub 1%) that we show as using 32 bit operating systems.

Firmware options – grblHAL Firmware Support

Our first non-grbl firmware officially supported is grblHAL – an up-and-coming solution that works on a wide variety of hardware.

Firmware flavour is selectable in the connection dropdown – by default most users will continue to use grbl, but swapping controller types is a simple click away.

We’ve updated the UI in a number of places to support all the new functionality available in grblHAL – including single axis probing, ethernet connectivity and more.

USB is no longer the only way to interact with your machine using grblHAL – so we’ve added a way to connect and run jobs using ethernet, which is more reliable overall.

grblHAL is also a bit more fluid when it comes to EEPROM options – so the firmware tool has been rebuilt to dynamically support all options are reported by the firmware itself and rebuild the table so you’ll always be able to easily update your EEPROM configuration no matter which plugins you have installed.

This is just a taste of new updates we’ve added – for all the details and changes, full notes can be found below!

Release Notes

  • Added Rotary Mode
    • gSender is now able to run 2+1 axis files on grbl and 4 axis files on grblHAL
    • Visualizer updated to support 4 axis rotations
    • A-axis DRO and jogging
    • Rotary probing
  • Added grblHAL controller support
    • Connect to and run jobs as normal on any grblHAL device
    • Connect over ethernet where hardware is supported
    • New grblHAL specific firmware tool that is dynamically generated based on reported settings
    • New UI elements where appropriate to support new functionality such as single axis homing
  • Gamepad improvements
    • Restructured logic and mapping of buttons to actions
    • Add secondary functionality to buttons
    • Added joystick MPG mode
    • Added lockout button to deactivate gamepad when needed
  • Improved job time estimation
    • Significantly improved initial time estimation algorithm based on machine acceleration and max speeds
    • Mid-job estimation uses initial estimate per line for more accurate remaining duration
  • Multi-corner probing – touch off any corner using both standard and auto-zero touchplates
  • Added Go To UI button to quickly go to an absolute or relative workspace coordinate
  • Clearer distinction on planned lines vs cut lines – planned lines show up as a (customizable) yellow instead of the default cut gray
  • Remote mode improvements
    • Added QR code for easier navigation to remote address on phone
    • Added workflow controls and unit selection to remote mode UI
  • Added preference to prompt on Zero to prevent accidentally resetting zero on any axis
  • Code block toolchange again supported
  • Firmware active modals now displayed in diagnostic tab
  • PRB values available to use in macros
  • Files are now parsed once per run time
  • Fix for DRO precision in some situations
  • Improved job stats area – now tracks jobs per com port, more information about each job run and the number of problems encountered
  • Maintenance reminders – set up and customize maintenance reminders to prompt tasks after specific run time totals have occured
  • Improved alarm and error recording

Download gSender 1.4.0

As always, releases can be found on Github!