Is there a guide for dummies for OpenFL?

Hi. I wish to use the OpenFL technology to allow me to pause and raise the printhead at certain layer levels during the print. I’ve read through the read-me and attempted a few things from the forum discussion, but to no avail. I have never used Python before so this is likely the kicker for me. Does anyone have a dummies guide for using OpenFL that may allow me to achieve the above? Thanks!

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Hi, following up from last message, this is the stage where I am at. Is anybody able to tell me where I am going wrong? Thanks

It looks like your Python search path doesn’t include the OpenFL directory, so it can’t find the module to import. Check out Python’s documentation on how modules work, or this Stack Overflow Q&A.

Hi Matt, I think I’ve found the directory now and was able to progress a little bit and now get these error messages. I’m currently working on a computer that isn’t connect to the Formlabs 3D printer (as I wanted to familiarise myself with Python) so I assume the error messages I am receiving are related to that. Would you agree and do you think I am ready to attempt this on my computer connect with the Form1+ printer? Thanks

It doesn’t look like you’re ready to connect to a printer.

Reading the error messages, I see
ModuleNotFoundError: no module named 'usb'

This indicates that OpenFL isn’t succeeding in importing usb.core (which it does here). Have you installed pyusb?

Taking a step back, did you follow this setup guide? Did you read all of the outputs carefully to make sure that each step succeeded?

In general, folks have had a lot of trouble with pyusb on Windows. If you end up in that situation, I’d recommend running OpenFL in a Linux VM as a workaround.

Hi Matt,

Apologies, I didn’t realise I had to install pyusb (or numpy) which I have done now and have progressed slightly further. I did follow the setup guide to the best of my ability! Screenshot shows where I am currently at. I asked a colleague about using Linux VM but they recommended against as they were worried our computers would not be able to handle it. Thanks again for the help, I very much appreciate it!


Okay, you’ve now reached the point of having USB driver issues on Windows. This is something we won’t be able to help you debug as effectively, because it depends on your system.

You can do some googling (e.g. “pyusb windows backend”) to see what other folks have done, search + ask for help on the PyUSB mailing list, or switch to a Linux VM and use the libusb backend.

Hi Matt, I’m currently doing this on a computer without a USB connection to Form1+, so I don’t know if that may be part of the issue currently. I’ll now try on the computer connected to the Form1+ and if the problem continues I’ll go down the path you suggest. Thanks for all the help.

Hi Matt, just thought I would update you on my situation as I have now tried on a computer that was directly connected to a Form1+ via USB with Preform OpenFL downloaded and firmware update via Preform OpenFL. I now get the following error message!

Just thought I would share in case this was a common issue with a quick fix. If not, I’ll go about doing this using Linux VM. Thanks again for your time and effort to provide a solution!

Do you have Preform open? From what I remember, having Preform open will prevent OpenFL from finding the printer. If that’s not the case, does the printer show up in the device manager?

Hi Matt, tried it without Preform open and no difference. The printer shows up in the device manager as Form 1. I am sceptical about whether the Firmware has correctly been updated as there is no confirmation message and Firmware update is always an available option for the printer via Preform.