Technology hates me. (tale of woe)

I have a home embroidery machine, but I cannot write designs to the memory card. I could in the past. Too many upgrades means I’m way behind. Maybe you can help me solve this dilemma, find a way out.

My machine is a Brother PE400-D. It’s small, it wasn’t too expensive, and it’s just right for the few times I need to embroider. What I want to embroider right now is quilt labels. What I don’t want to do is sink a lot of money into something I only use sometimes.

I have Embird software on my computer, no problems there. I paid the upgrade fee. I can digitize all I want. On this part of the whole she-bang I was willing to spend a little money.

I have an Amazing Box, in order to get designs from my computer to the memory card that goes into the Brother. Here’s my problem: the Amazing Box works with Windows 98. Yup. When I got the XP on the “new” computer 6 years ago, I downloaded the free upgrade. I couldn’t make it work with the memory card I have, because PE400-D was not an option listed, and all the others I tried didn’t trick it into working. I tried tech support with Amazing Designs, but what they suggested was to choose a different machine from the options. Lady, I tried that. She had no further ideas. No problem, I kept my old laptop (circa 1999) that still has Windows 98 on it. I simply transfer the designs I want to use to the laptop, write to the memory card via Amazing Box, and I’m good to go.

Then it gets tricky. I had to buy a 3.5″ floppy drive that runs from the USB port in order to write designs to the laptop. From the desktop, I would write designs to a floppy, put the floppy into the laptop, and write to the memory card. Problem solved, for a while. Now the USB port on my laptop isn’t working. My son gave me a card thingy with USB ports on the end of it, to plug into my laptop. Now the laptop won’t boot up with the card thingy in it, and it won’t recognize the card thingy if I insert it after the laptop is booted. Twelve years is a good run for a simple laptop, and I don’t blame it for wanting to go to the hardware graveyard.

Still with me?

Back to the main desktop computer, which has again been replaced with one running Windows 7. I tried loading the Amazing Box software, and it doesn’t know my hardware.  The USB port is working, it just doesn’t find my Amazing Box. I really don’t want to put a couple hundred dollars into a more current reader/writer. If I could make this work for about $40 or less, I would do that.

My final idea is to put a barter ad on Craigslist. If someone would transfer designs from a flash drive to my memory card in exchange for something I could do as a return favor, I might try to work out a deal.

Can anyone relate? Anyone have any good advice for me?

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3 responses to “Technology hates me. (tale of woe)

  1. will your laptop not read a regular USB memory stick? the cheapest other solution i can think of is the brother ped-basic software where you get a new card writer, but that’s $104 from amazon.

    Actually, if you have a copy of Windows 98, you could set up a virtual machine on your windows 7 computer, basically fool the card reader into thinking it’s connected to a 98 machine. I’ve done this on my mac, but you must also be able to do it on windows, try googling “virtual machine on windows 7”

    • The laptop is so old that it has one USB port, and that quit working. That’s why my son gave me the card thingy with the USB ports on the end of it. I’ll look into the virtual machine idea with the W98 OS on my desktop, it might work, thanks for the idea!

  2. I relate! You are so right! I’d go to the Brother site and email their tech support. I love them peeps!
    As for me, it’s not the computer I’m afraid, it’s me! But I’m getting there… one brain cell at a time…

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