Frequently Asked Questions

Frequently Asked Questions (FAQ) Whilst customers are always welcome to utilise our telephone and e-mail technical support, answers to the most common queries we deal with can be found below and...

Frequently Asked Questions (FAQ) Whilst customers are always welcome to utilise our telephone and e-mail technical support, answers to the most common queries we deal with can be found below and may vastly expedite the resolution to what could well be a very common ‘issue’.

Common Specifications

  • What does IP65 mean?

    IP is an acronym for “Ingress protection”. Our most common level of protection, IP65, offers protection against dust and low pressure water projected from a nozzle against the enclosure from any direction. Please see our IP ratings guide for further details.

  • What is "AT mode"?

    AT mode dictates that when power is applied to the unit, it will automatically power up and not require manual pressing of any power switch. ATX mode defines the opposite. Most DSL products are AT mode by default, ask your representative if you are unsure…

  • What is the difference between 304 and 316 Stainless Steel?

    Whilst both brackets are true Stainless Steel each type has a slightly different alloy composition, with the primary differences listed below.

    304: 18% chromium and 8% nickel

    316: 16% chromium, 10% nickel and 2% molybdenum.

    Due to the addition of molybdenum, corrosion resistance is increased against chlorides such as salt water, de-icing salts and chlorine based cleaning products.

    Consequently, 316 stainless steel is recommended for marine applications and food processing environments where heavier cleaning (involving chlorine based solutions) are involved.

Single Board Computers

  • Can I use a RaspberryPI™, BeagleBoard™ or Arduino™ as an SBC?

    Such boards are designed for educational or hobbyist applications and often carry a warning similar to the below. For this reason it can be dangerous to employ such a unit in an embedded application that requires longevity and continuity of supply.

    ‘We do not encourage the use of the board that we manufacture in commercial products. We are not able to schedule parts and arrange for production for orders that we cannot see. Meeting demand is difficult as a result.

    In addition, we will make revisions to the board as we find necessary and we will not continue to make older revisions. This can result in supply and compatibility issues for those using them in a product.’

  • Why won’t my Single Board Computer power up?

    Check the correct input voltage is applied to the terminal block and your power supply has sufficient wattage to provide the necessary current. Ensure you are measuring voltage at the terminal block, NOT the power supply, due to degradation of voltage through wires.

  • Why does the MTBF light remain on?

    Either the CPU module has a critical hardware failure or the built in MTBF counter has elapsed, enabling you to replace the unit once it has surpassed it’s traditional MTBF figure – for ultimate reliability.

  • Is there an easy way to develop a headless Single Board Computer in the VSX/VDX range?

    Yes, using Remote Console Redirection through COM port and a desktop PC using Hyperterminal, you can remotely view the system as it if were a monitor and issue commands. To use this, you should enable the “Remote Access Control” in the BIOS (or short GPIO pins for headless systems) and choose the correct COM port settings (115200, n, 8, 1). On your PC side, you should open “Hyperterminal” with identical settings (115200, n, 8, 1).

  • Why won't my CF/SD card format?

    If you’re experiencing difficulties with CompactFlash/SD cards formatting or detecting, attempt the following

    1. Enter the BIOS on start up using the ‘del’ key
    2. Navigate to ‘IDE settings’
    3. Modify the ‘PCI IDE Busmaster’ setting to ‘disabled’
    4. Press F10 to save and exit, reboot.

Assembled Products (Panel PCs, Industrial/Embedded BOX PCs)

  • How do I clean my resistive touchscreen without damaging it?

    Never use a brush to clean the screen as this will damage the membrane. With a soft cloth and warm water gently wipe. If this doesn’t work then try using an organic cleaning solvent, one that doesn’t contain chlorine, such as acetone or methyl alcohol. Finally, rinse with water and dry wipe to avoid stains.

  • Why won't my MicroSD card detect?

    MicroSD interfaces are not ‘hot swappable’, thus MicroSD’s must be installed at the point of power on and only removed once the system has been shutdown.

  • How do I mount a Panel PC?

    DSL’s Panel PCs are all provided with a free panel mounting kit. Most also provide the option to VESA mount using any standard VESA compatible bracket. Should you wish to mount the Panel PC securely into a panel, please read DSL’s easy guide on how do this.

  • My Touchscreen does not work?

    Try inserting a USB mouse and reinstall the touchscreen drivers/software and run through the calibration process. The drivers will be available on a CD-ROM supplied with the product, if you are unable to locate this please contact your DSL Account Manager.

  • How to I initialise a brand new SSD/HDD?

    Plug the HDD into any Windows 7/8 PC

    1. Click Start, All Programs, (Right Click) This PC and click Manage
    2. Click Storage, then Disk Management
    3. A message should pop up and ask ‘Do you want to initialise new disk’, click yes and choose MBR (not GPT) option. If not, locate the Disk in the bottom half of the screen.
    4. Format the disk as NTFS
    5. Mark the partition as ACTIVE (right click on the disk, click ‘Mark partition as active

    You can now use the ‘Recovery Disc’ provided by DSL with all systems to install Windows.

  • How do I use the switch connector under Windows XP/7/8/10?

    To enable the Industrial PC to have a power button as you’d have on your desktop PC, use the green connector supplied to attach a momentary switch.
    Go into ‘Control Panel‘, ‘Power Options‘ and ‘System Settings‘ to define what the switch will do when activated – sleep (soft shutdown), turn the unit off (hard shutdown) or on.

    **Please note;- The switch is not supplied as standard on all units. Ask your DSL account manager to confirm availability.

Operating Systems

  • Can I use Linux to avoid paying Microsoft license costs?

    The very short answer is ‘Yes’, though the long answer is far closer to ‘maybe’. It is true that Linux (by definition) is license free, though this often doesn’t stretch to implementations being used commercially – check the terms and conditions of whatever derivative you have in mind.

    The second (and most important) consideration is the ‘NRE’ involved in Linux development. Microsoft based operating systems carry a license fee because that work is already done, productionising a Microsoft OS is often as simple as installing your application and selecting pre-configured parameters to achieve the experience you want.

    With Linux, the initial development effort is magnitudes higher and invariably requires individual(s) experienced in Linux, whether you have such individuals in house or need to involve a third party to develop your Linux OS – both involve cost.

    DSL are licensed and authorised Microsoft partners, thus can provide support including custom image creation for almost all Microsoft Operating Systems. The same is not true for Linux, as it isn’t viable to maintain up to date expertise for such a vast spectrum of off-the-shelf distributions (with regular version updates) to be provided as part of off-the-shelf products.

    If you are experienced in implementing Linux, then do not let DSL discourage you – for those there really does exist a viable opportunity to reduce unit cost by avoiding Microsoft license costs. However for those that do not have that experience, the cost of developing the ‘license-free’ OS needs to be weighed up against those savings and a suitable party identified to undertake the development effort if that expertise does not exist in house.

    DSL’s hardware has been tested by us and our customers under a huge range of Linux derivatives, however, as much as we would like to, we cannot undertake that development effort ourselves for off-the-shelf products, nor offer technical support relating to any specific Linux implementation.

    It is for this reason that, whilst the hardware fully supports versions of Linux, we do not offer such operating systems pre-installed. DSL will only supply ‘off-the-shelf’ configurations that we can fully support ourselves in-house.

  • How do I know if I'm using XPe or WES2009?

    XPe = Service Pack 2, WES2009 = Service Pack 3

    1. Download the Windows XP SPcheck tool here.
    2. Open a command prompt (type ‘cmd’ in Start, Run)
    3. Execute spcheck.exe
    4. Review spcheck.rpt report (in Notepad) to see Service Pack version.

  • Why won’t my XPe image boot?

    First time: Boot sector not prepared if formatted under DOS Not first time: Incorrect shutting down (or due to sudden power outage when not protected by XPe write filters).

  • XP Embedded stalls on the DSL boot screen?

    If this is the first time you have powered up your product, this can sometimes take up to 5 minutes as during the first cycle it is assigning SID (System Identification) information. If this is not the first time you have powered the system and it stalls at this screen for more than 5 minutes, please contact your DSL Account Manager.

  • How do you enable XPe write filters?

    Batch file on desktop or FBWFmgr via DOS command prompt (Microsoft Tutorial). The best way to configure the FBWF filters is of course in advance within Target Designer whilst creating an image, of course this isn’t possible for customers taking a pre-installation of a ‘one size fits all’ XPe/WES2009 image – in this case FBWF is fully configurable via command prompt (FBWFMGR.EXE) or can be enabled/disabled by executing the batch file on the desktop of supported systems.

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