Microsoft has released code which allows owners of a Raspberry Pi 2 or Raspberry Pi 3 single-board computer (SBC) to turn it into a networked print server for a range of 3D printers.
When Microsoft first announced that it would be releasing Windows 10 for the Raspberry Pi, it came with a wave of excitement that was quickly crushed by the discovery that the operating system would be a significantly pared-down edition dubbed IoT Core and focusing on embedded usage. Since then, Microsoft has been working hard to convince developers that Windows 10 IoT Core is a serious competitor to using GNU/Linux on the Raspberry Pi in a variety of embedded projects, and with its latest release the company has stumbled onto something promising by building on the great support Windows has for the latest third-party hardware.
'Today, we have added a new Windows 10 IoT Core sample app, “Network 3D Printer,” that adds support for an even wider range of 3D printers and allows you to access them over your network,
' explained Microsoft's director of programme management for Windows IOT Core, Billy Anders, in the announcement
. 'Multiple Windows computers on your network can even share the same 3D printer.
The initial release of the example code, which is available to download and run on a Raspberry Pi 2 or Pi 3 now, includes support for 'more than a dozen
' 3D printers, including models from Ultimaker, Prusa, Printrbot, Makergear, and Lulzbot. Microsoft's goal with the release is clear, and nothing Anders is trying to hide: 'we invite device manufacturers to evaluate the experience that this enables and the benefits of being able to easily Wi-Fi enable their devices and connect them to Windows,
' he explains.