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Can we connect USB external CD-Writer to PXI-8184 controller

We have an PXI-8184 controller on PXI-1031 chassis.
Can we use an USB connectivity external CD Writer on this arrangement?
If yes, which model?
Gurdas Sandhu, Ph.D.
ORISE Research Fellow at US EPA
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Message 1 of 7
Hi Gurdas,
Your PXI controller with XP acts just like a normal PC. So if you have a USB CD(writer) drive which is supported by XP then it should work I think.
I use a TEAC CDrom drive from NI for the PXI-8186. Works fine.
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Message 2 of 7

KC, thanks for replying.

We too purchased a TEAC CD-Drive (from NI) with the 8184 and that works fine. But I remember paying a huge premium for the Teac over similar drives available in the market. And we bought the drive from NI because one odd page said only so and so drive models work with the 8184. And none of them was available freely in the market in India. So, we went through NI.

Logically, I too believe any model should work. However, to be on the safer side, I would still like to confirm if anyone has done the exercise of having a CD-Writer from the free market working trouble-free with the 8184 (or any similar controller from NI).




Gurdas Sandhu, Ph.D.
ORISE Research Fellow at US EPA
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Message 3 of 7

I agree with you. Better be sure before buying if it is expensive.

I paid twice the price of USB CD writer (local shop) for the TEAC drive (at NI). But buying it together with the controller it's a small amount. It's like fooling yourself  Smiley Tongue



Message 4 of 7
The USB CD-ROM drives that NI recommends are special because the BIOS of your controller allows you to boot from them.  This is important for using the bootable Recovery CD Media that is provided with your PXI controller.

See the following KnowledgeBase articles for documentation on this:
What USB CD-ROMs are Bootable with NI PXI Controllers?
Booting From a USB CD-ROM (or Hard Drive), on a PXI or VXI Controller

If you are not interested in being able to boot from your USB CD-ROM, then your options are not as limited.  Although untested, any USB 1.1 compliant device that has drivers for Windows XP shouldn't have any problem.  Obviously, NI cannot guarantee that every USB device will function properly as there are far too many to test.

Does anyone else feel like doing some Measurement and Automation on the 25th?

Happy Holidays!
Travis W
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Message 5 of 7

Hello Travis,

The NI controller we have (8184) and probably other controller models these days come with an 'image' of the OS on the HDD. This area is not accessible to the user and acts as a always present OS backup. Which means the ability to boot from the USB is not really important. I am using the logic that if the controller is OK it will boot from its image, if the controller is gone bad then it can neither boot from its image nor the USB. Do correct me if I am flawed.

I have some questions/obserations:

1) Is the ability to boot from USB retained for controllers having an OS image on the HDD?

2) Does NI tweak the CD drive or can I go ahead and buy the NI tested model from the open market?

3) I was disappointed to see only 3 drives being tested. Also, none of these are models popular in Asia. May I suggest NI takes up testing for few more models (which are also easily available). For example, in India, popular brands are Sony, LG and Samsung.

Wishing the complete NI community a year full of Eureka! moments.

- Gurdas

Gurdas Sandhu, Ph.D.
ORISE Research Fellow at US EPA
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Message 6 of 7

I agree with your assertions about the Phoenix Firstware partition on your controller.  It does not look like you will need to use your recovery CD as long as your Phoenix partition is intact.

1)  Yes, this ability is retained.  Although primarily for recovery and installation, booting from a CD-ROM is used for other applications as well.

2)  No, NI does not tweak the drives.

3)  Again, as long as there is a Windows driver for a USB CD-ROM drive, it should work with our controllers.  Although not all drives are gauranteed to be bootable with the BIOS on our controllers, no drive should have a problem in Windows.  I will file a documentation suggestion to test for bootability on more commercially available controllers.

Travis W
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Message 7 of 7