[Automated-sequencing] Re: Question regarding tray on deck error

Phillip San Miguel pmiguel at purdue.edu
Wed Aug 9 13:18:41 EST 2006

Jeannine wrote:
> Hi Phillip,
> Thanks so much for the information.  I was curious if your technician
> mentioned anything to you about mechanical problems, such as the one
> we've encountered, being due to connection on a local network?  I don't
> know about you, but in our lab the computer connected to the 3730 is
> also connected a local network.  Someone I talked to this morning said
> that occassionally something may be sent over the local network that
> can confuse the 3730.  I don't know if this is a valid concern.  I was
> just curious if you or your service technician has ever tried
> disconnecting the computer from the network just while it is running?
> Just thought I would check and see if anyone has tried this, and if it
> worked...
> Thanks!
> Jeannine

Hi Jeannine,
	I can't think of any reason that just being connected to a network 
would cause robot problems. That is, unless your machine is hacked and 
going into zombie mode to send millions of spams periodically, etc. 
There are independent network cards handling traffic between the machine 
and the console and the console and the internet. So  it isn't clear to 
me how non-malicious network traffic between the console and the 
internet (or vice-versa) would have an impact on traffic between the 
console and the 3730.
	But are you behind a hardware firewall? I don't think it is safe to 
hook a 3730 console up to the internet without the intervention of a 
hardware firewall. We constrict network traffic between the console and 
the internet to a pretty narrow band.
	If you are firewalled, then far more likely there is some problem with 
either the hardware or software running you 3730. There was a firmware 
upgrade to one of the boards controlling the autosampler that our FSE 
did last year. If you haven't had that done, then I'd recommend it. I 
saw lots of goofy things in the log files until that firmware upgrade 
was done. Or maybe you didn't install the sensors quite right. I've 
never heard of an FSE advising an operator to change sensors themselves. 
But maybe you are just more inherently trustworthy, hardware-wise, than 
we seem to ABI.
	One last thing. Are you using the console FTP server to transfer 
chromats from the console to other machines on the network? If so, I 
know from experience that there is a right way to do that (creating a 
virtual directory in the FTP service pointing to the results folder 
holding chromat directories of interest) and a wrong way (changing the 
root directory of the FTP service.) The latter, if done the way I did 
it, causes problems that bedevil you until you remember (probably many 
months later) what you did...


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