New Glowforge, Will not connect to WIFI, WPA2, powers on but button does not glow [Resolved]

You said this more eloquently than I could have.


Thanks for the help everyone! @christian.zagarskas I’m glad you were able to get up and printing. I’m going to move this to Everything Else so the conversation can continue.


Couple things here…
1- I am trying to like the GF. Really am, used it for 8 hours yesterday
(and have a long list of bugs and problems to post here today)

2- I am not a negative person, when I encounter a situation such as this I try to
A: create the solution I want (for example, feature requests or bug reports)
B: see if there is a benefit to changing my perspective.

"the unit’s software is primarily cloud-based was stated from the start"
I do not think that was the original specification on the crowdfunding campaign… So, if you can find them, examine the original crowdfunding campaign and video, then get back to me here, I suspect that this may help you understand my expectations. (its also important to look at the EDIT dates on the crowdfunding page, if its still up)

When you agreed to take delivery of your Glowforge, did you still not realize it was WiFi only and cloud-based?

“WiFi Connected” translates to me as “value added feature” [awesome]

That in no way left me with the impression that it would be “WiFi ONLY - no cable - no software” [wtf?!]

When I set it up and saw there was no cable… my heart sank.
Simply put: Went from excited happy kid to jaded pessimistic adult.

Keep in mind here I am coming from 2 years ago, I remember the day I selected the founder perk, read the original SEPC, and watched the Alpha model connected to a computer, with a cord, on the original video make a cut.

Thats what ive been waiting for.

i’m not going to go troll through the wayback machine to find it, but I knew from the very beginning that it was cloud-based. there were lots of discussions about it back then and I know it was one of the reasons my office didn’t consider buying one during the original campaign.

that said, here are a bunch of links from sept/oct 2015 that all mention it.

Why the heck are they saddling my cheap laser cutter with cloud based software?”

“When we set out to make the laser affordable, our first decision was to put the software in the cloud and make extensive use of smartphone components. We quickly realized that we could use these technologies make Glowforge as intuitive and delightful to use as our favorite smart devices. Now, I see designers, artists, and creative people of every stripe walk up to a Glowforge, and make incredible ideas come to life.”

The Glowforge is connected, and there are the obvious benefits to that, like the database of designs that you can download. Now, if you don’t want to stay connected to Glowforge, do your designs have to stay in the system?

There’s no offline, there’s no USB or Ethernet. So, Glowforge pulls down from the cloud. You can upload directly to the cloud service, and that can be either through a plug-in in Illustrator or by just dragging and dropping. You send it to Glowforge, and those designs are of course private. You don’t have to share them with anybody if you don’t want.

But we’ve talked to some folks, like in the military, who say they can’t let their designs off of their servers. And my answer to them is that Epilog, Trotec, those guys make awesome lasers, they should get one of those. We’re not going to be everything to everybody. And this is what we needed to do to make it as easy to use as we wanted to, and to not have our software team re-implementing everything three times for Mac and PC and cloud> Blockquote.


I’ve got to say… It really doesn’t sound like you looked into this before you purchased. I don’t mean that as a negative. I mean, it’s a pretty exciting product. Easy to miss some of the finer points. But I remember long before I ordered, when I was researching it, I knew it had no network jack, and I knew the software was cloud-based. I was surprised by both. They delayed my ultimate buying decision. So, I guess what I’m saying is… If I knew, and everybody else knew, it seems you simply didn’t pick up on these things. Which, again, isn’t some dig on you… you probably saw all of the amazing things and didn’t notice the generally insignificant detractors.


I guess the part I don’t understand is that you waited over two years and didn’t stop by these forums to learn more about a relatively significant purchase that you made, and were relying on to do specific things in a specific way. You seem very disappointed and surprised, when the information was available to you. You should have received email updates over the past 2 years. You could have asked specific questions here or read various informational posts here. It just seems like you assumed it would work how you expected it to work without actually ever looking into how it works.


You have convinced me of the following:

A- I am nuts and not remembering the original video properly,
there were no perks that stated I could use Illustrator, Photoshop or AutoCad to print
there was no cable plugged into the oringal unit in the video
USB was not listed in the feature SPEC

B- this is all stuff that changed AFTER the 26M was raised
people were notified, in which case me thinking that “just wait and be quiet, be patient” was a bad idea, I should have read everything and not trusted the original “handshake and agreed price with a promise” I thought I saw.

Either way, I see no benefit here to entertaining this thread any further, instead I see 2 options
1- sell, asap (already in discussion)
2- join the community and push ideas and feature requests to shape this into something useful

you are only partially nuts here.

this part is true. and it’s still “on the to-do list” (i think even mentioned in the web page asking if you wanted it now, but i don’t have my PDF of the page right here to check). they’ve definitely talked about a connection directly from Illustrator (not sure about PS or ACAD, but those wouldn’t have interested me so i may have missed them).

these parts, i think you may be nuts about. :slight_smile: there was a power cable, but there was no USB or ethernet connection in the original spec.

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Hey guys. Doesn’t really matter why he didn’t know about the cloud requirement. Yeah the initial tone was a little off. But he didn’t know, was disappointed and now intends to do something different. Lets not pile on.


As far as the “large files” goes, that’s a temporary limitation - right now they can only print files that fill a 100k buffer in the printer, but in the future they will eliminate that limit. This is a big deal to me, because I have to break apart designs into multiple pieces and print them one at a time. This is doable - you can load all of the pieces into a single file, so they are aligned, etc., but you have to turn one piece on and the others off then ‘print’, repeatedly, which gets old. Each piece can print for 2-4 hours, so it’s not like you’re constantly working at it, but still, it would be nice to start a single 10 hour print job instead of five 2 hour print jobs.

I have to say - if you can’t send designs through their servers (with their privacy policy, , which is a pretty standard web site type policy, promising best effort data security, not absolute guarantees) then the rest is academic. They’ve been quite clear from the beginning that’s their technical architecture, and through numerous debates they’ve been consistent. And, IMO, it’s the right choice for a consumer device - lower development and support costs, no consumers having to install or upgrade software, etc. For a business, it’s a more complex discussion.

If it doesn’t do what you want, you might want to sell your GF and get something like an Epilog. The GF units that people are selling appear to be selling for more than the original crowdfunding price, which would help pay for the rather more expensive alternative. :slight_smile: But sometimes paying more is the right answer, if it gets you what you want.

Once you have successfully setup the GLowforge it no longer broadcasts a wifi network. (e.g. if you come to my house and browse wifi networks you will not see the GF’s network - that only shows when the button is glowing teal in setup mode)


laird makes a point that is really honestly behind all my frustration here.

I am on the Epilog notice list for a refurb, have been since 2013… but since ordering the GF when I see the 3500-9500 models show up for sale I was saying to myself “yea, I dont need that now, I can just be patient and quiet and wait for the GF to arrive, ill sub out the parts I need online till then”

Now, the GF is here, and it cant handle my jobs.
So I am kicking myself for not buying the Epilogs I saw at 1/3-1/2 price for the last 2 years while I loyaly waited for the GF. Its like a double whammy here, lots of emotional stress, financial stress and problems to solve. Uncomfortable decisions to make.

So, if I examine that I think what I may be doing here is slowly formed in my mind a FALSE concept that can be summed up as “The GF is a replacement for my need of an Epilog”. Turns out this is a fallacy of logic and maybe I need to look closer at that not being the truth…

Where I am at with this now is simple.
The GF is for sale, till then, I will dedicate myself to making it work the way I need it to. In a few months it will still be “kinda a toy” in the mail, sold, OR (hopefully) I can get it into shape as a tool.


i totally get the frustration that it’s not serving your purposes and don’t blame you for being unhappy. most of us were attempting to show you that it wasn’t new information, but it may have come across more harshly than at least i intended.

your frustration came through pretty harshly at GF for things that they were reasonably clear about in most cases, so defending them may have come back the same way.

there are plenty of things to be frustrated with. the delays, the fact that the software isn’t complete yet and there are many promises they haven’t met yet. but many of us jump to their defense for things they communicated from the beginning.

Jeez… this sure sounds like alot of complaining from me… I see solutions for all of these. Keep in mind I am here to find them.

Thanks, thats good to know, but its still “online”…

As a web developer I know what that means.
It means EVERYONE’s GF is online and can be found here:
and “violated” by anyone with the right skills. (that is as likely as having a fear of a martial artist killing you on the street) but… let me put it this way… I know people who think it’s funny to turn on/off things that people had connected as smart devices, pranks, like turning on someone’s GE dryer, or flipping WINK on/off 100 times in an hour. I’ve never had to worry about that problem, till now.

I can not cut any NDA jobs I have with clients on prototypes without violating their trust.
This is also problem for me.

All that aside, being reliant on the device, power, software AND throwing dependencies like ONLINE software and WiFi and a modem and stable internet connections = recipe for disaster. Too many dependencies.

It has already caused problems for me (I am preparing a video on this) the web-app keeps crashing, my internet is 1000mbs, 1G business line coming in, so its not my speed. My computer is basically a minni render farm, it can render 3min of 4k HD in Premiere+AfterFX in 10min, so its not that slowing me down. Being dependent on GF server and online software is killing my workflow.

Here is what I am now looking for to solve that problem:
It was promised a while back. Maybe its not done yet? Do you know anything about this?

With this I can in theory mask my own intranet, point the GF at my computer, install WAMP and tell GF that my computer is where jobs get processed. That takes the GF offline and fixes everything “wrong with WiFi only” (except having a USB, but lol, im SOL there).

I have had pretty good reliability (in chrome albeit) and I have 75/75 FIoS which has been fine even for 3+ hour jobs.

it doesn’t sound like the GF is really a feasible solution for what you need to do. probably never has been, with the cloud software.

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Try to put a 3MB vector file up there with 10,000 points. Not at all uncommon, upper end of what is a “small” file. Try using a topographic map or just copy a 1000 point design 10 times, a fancy geometric shape maybe, a prototype design for a drone…

i’ll show you whats going on.
I’ve got a whole video screen-cast “debug” for this which I hope will fix the problem for me, or everyone.

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