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cdl to pdf or other vector

Discussion in 'Signlab' started by myront, Oct 17, 2019.

  1. myront

    myront CorelDRAW is best

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    We have an old version of SignLab running on a Win98 pc. That was the way the company did things long ago before I came along and showed them the error of their ways.. That pc has been giving us many hardware issues. SignLab is a very expensive program, too expensive to buy again plus a new pc to run it. We really only keep it around to open old files and save out as eps or other vector formats. You wouldn't believe how many customers come in and say they want the same thing that was done back in 2000. Any way to batch convert those cdl files or maybe just convert a single file once in a while?
     
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  2. BIG EASY DOES IT

    BIG EASY DOES IT Very Active Member

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    Following this. last time I looked into it we were just kinda screwed. Have to open the file in signlab. You can copy and paste from signlab to illustrator but you can't open a cdl with anything else.
     
  3. Solventinkjet

    Solventinkjet DIY Printer Fixing Guide

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    I know in Illustrator you can make a batch action that will convert all files in a given folder. If anyone knows of an equivalent in Corel that should be the way to go.
     
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  4. myront

    myront CorelDRAW is best

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    Yes, Corel can do that too but not cdl files. Doubt illustrator either
     
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  5. WildWestDesigns

    WildWestDesigns Major Contributor

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    Why not run Signlab in a VM? That way the hardware issues of the original computer are non existent.

    If it's dongled, that should still be able to be passed through to the VM.

    Even though those files would be around 20 yrs old, given it's a proprietary format, I would be worried about how accurate the newly exported file would be if using a 3rd party software to handle those files.
     
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  6. myront

    myront CorelDRAW is best

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    [QUOTE="WildWestDesigns, post: 1450297, member: 24986"...Why not run Signlab in a VM
    ...Even though those files would be around 20 yrs old, given it's a proprietary format, I would be worried about how accurate the newly exported file would be if using a 3rd party software to handle those files.[/QUOTE]

    Hmm have to ask my network/pc guru about VM
    and yes, I'd have to agree with you on the accuracy issue.
     
  7. WildWestDesigns

    WildWestDesigns Major Contributor

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    The biggest concern would be passing the dongle through. Is it serial or is it USB (both were used back in that day, at least with embroidery software) and then will your current computer support the correct one (not so much an issue if using something like a Lenovo workstation as both are there, at least on mine they are).

    If you are able to run something like VirtualPC 2007 (last one to support Win 98), which was/is freely available from MS (if still up for download), and you have the install disc and serial for the OS, that would be the easiest way to get you up and running. If it needs compatibility, check Vista or XP. This did work on Win 7 (a form of this was used for XPM for Win 7, but that version didn't support Win 98), but it may or may not work on Win 10, just don't know. Don't have Win 10 to test it out.

    Depending on what version of Win 98 (Win 98 or Win 98 SE) would determine if you are at half a gig of RAM or a full gig. This would probably be one of the few VMs that I wouldn't worry about if a computer was spec'ed out for the guest VM.
     
  8. d fleming

    d fleming Very Active Member

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    is it not worth the 500$ upgrade to be able to use old files and keep consistency with old established customers? You may even find the error of your ways and start using it, lol.
     
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  9. geb

    geb Very Active Member

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    I agree, upgrade and new computer if possible.
     
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  10. brycesteiner

    brycesteiner Member

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    Download Virtualbox and be done.
     
  11. WildWestDesigns

    WildWestDesigns Major Contributor

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    VirtualBox does not, I repeat does not, support anything older then XP for Windows (with regard to consumer versions, which NT wasn't released to consumers until it merged with XP fully) with regard to their Guest Additions. They are clearly explicit with that.

    You may have 10 or more crashes when you try to boot up Win 98 directly within Virtualbox. Or atleast I have. Also keep in mind, because you don't have Guest Additions, in order to share folders and get files in and out of the VM, have to setup things via IP and that is quite a bit more tricky with a VM then using the builtin Shared Folders that most VM software use. Not impossible, just not as quick or efficient.

    I get around this by using Windows Vista in VirtualBox, within Vista, I run VirtualPC 2007 and then run Win 98. It runs at damn near native speeds once you get the VirtualPC drivers in Win 98 (until then it is awfully slow).

    If he is going to do it through Virtualbox, he will have to either deal with those initial crashes before bootup and the trickier method of getting files in and out of the VM or do it like I do it, which will require more RAM and require using another OS within Virtualbox.

    That's why I would suggest to see if he could get VirtualPC 2007 and to work on what I would imagine be a Win 10 machine. Maybe 8.1 (slim chance of a Win 7 machine, maybe if have a Win 7 machine and keep it off the WAN), but I'm playing the odds.
     

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    Last edited: Oct 17, 2019
  12. myront

    myront CorelDRAW is best

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    I started with this company 1 month before my actual retirement date from the military. I was in charge of a Graphics Department in the military. We used CorelDraw exclusively. The first thing this company had me do was sit and familiarize/learn SignLab. Took me all of 2 minutes to realize it was the most antiquated software I'd ever come across for all out design work. Simple cut vinyl was fine but that's it. I learned to that they had CGS 9 and the full Adobe suite but the other two designers rarely used them even though they both had some college background in Graphic Design. It was mainly the owner's wife who insisted on using signlab. They also didn't have a networked printer. Once you got done with your design you had to go into another room just to print. I took care of that right away. I then began to use Corel for everything and they soon found things getting done a lot faster. Now we're down to 1 & 1/2 designers (I represent the 1).

    If it is only $500 to upgrade I'd say let's do it. We don't even need another pc, just load it on mine. As long as it will be able to open those old cdl files and allow me to export/save as pdf or eps.
     
  13. myront

    myront CorelDRAW is best

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    Just heard back from CADlink. $300 for the program + $50 for the USB Dongle.
    I'm on to begging and pleading to our Network Administrator who will in turn beg and plead to the owner.
     
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  14. d fleming

    d fleming Very Active Member

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    It sounds like they only had a very old version of sl cut. SL print/cut is excellent imho. I have been using it Since the 90's. It has run many large format printers, cutters and done all my screen printing design. I have corel and adobe suite as well. Love Corel. Not that big an adobe fan even though I taught it at High School level in my comm art program just to make sure I was putting out the best apprentices I could. If you want to run your printers from it, it is more than capable in the current version and is 64 bit. It interfaces/imports/exports with corel nicely.
     
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  15. jimdtg

    jimdtg Member

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    Is that SL E6 or SL 7.1?
     
  16. Andy D

    Andy D Very Active Member

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    Have looked to to see if there is a third party program that converts signlab files? Most file types have them.
    That way you can store your files somewhere else and then convert them as needed.
     
  17. jimdtg

    jimdtg Member

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    As that's Signlab native file that only Signlab can open those files. It also happens with .FS as FlexiSIGN's native file. So I don't see any 3rd party software can open those files, at least till now.
     
  18. WildWestDesigns

    WildWestDesigns Major Contributor

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    The only way around that that one could hope for is that it's an older file version that a 3rd party might have a way to convert it. There are a lot of ifs that have to come together though, but that would be the best case scenario that one might have with getting a 3rd party software to read/write that file format.

    I tend to doubt that just based on the fact that this particular file format is a very niche file format. Not one that many people are going to deal with compared to something like Ai or cdr file formats (I wouldn't expect those to turn out all that much better either, but those file formats would affect more people then a SL file format would).

    Not to say that there may not be some obscure 3rd party tool that may work and work well, but I highly doubt it.

    The joys of closed source proprietary file formats (they are doing their job that's for sure).
     
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