Pfaff 2140 Communication Problems – Solved

This solved my Pfaff 2140 communication problems – all I had to do was change the baud rate – maybe some of this will help you …. Tech Info from Pfaff – YEA it works.

If you are experiencing a No Communications with machine error when attempting to transfer designs to a 2140, 2144, or 2170 connected with a serial cable, please do the following.

NOTE: After completing steps 1-4 below, attempt to send a design to your machine. If the transfer is successful, do not continue through the remaining steps. If you are still experiencing non-communication between your computer and machine after completing these steps, continue with the remaining steps.
NOTE: If your computer does not have a serial port we recommend using a USB to Serial adapter (such as the Belkin F5U 109) or the 2140/2144 USB Connection cable available as an accessory from your local Pfaff Dealer.

Make sure all connections are secure:
1. For the 2140/2144/2170, try both card drives.
a. From the Embroidery System folder open 4D Configure.b. Make sure the 2140/2144/2170 Direct connection is selected.c. Try each ComPort setting. Attempt to transfer a design to your machine after each setting change.
Change the Port Settings in the Device Manager:

2. Change the baud rate of the port:
a. Right click on MY COMPUTER and select PROPERTIES from the menu.b. Select the DEVICE MANAGER tab (for Windows XP select the HARDWARE tab first).c. Click the + in front of the ComPorts (LPT).d. Right click the ComPort used by your sewing machine, and select Properties from the menu.e. Select the Port Settings tab.f. Change the Bits per second to 1200. Do not change any other settings.g. Click the OK button to close all windows.h. Attempt to transfer a design.i. If this does not work, try a variety of low and high settings. If no settings work, change the Bits Per Second back to 9600.

3. Change the buffer settings of the port:
a. Right click on MY COMPUTER and select PROPERTIES from the menu.b. Select the DEVICE MANAGER tab (for Windows XP select the HARDWARE tab first).c. Click the + in front of the ComPorts (LPT).d. Right click on the ComPort used by your sewing machine and select properties from the menu.e. Select the Port Settings tab.f. Click the Advanced button.g. Click and drag both slider bars (receive and transmit buffers) all the way to the left.h. Click the OK button to close all windows.i. Attempt to transfer a design.j. If this resolves your conflict you can move the sliders over one notch at a time and try out the connection to get the optimum position and still use your program successfully.

4. Change the flow control of the port:
a. Right click on MY COMPUTER and select PROPERTIES from the menu.b. Select the DEVICE MANAGER tab (for Windows XP select the HARDWARE tab first).c. Click the + in front of the ComPorts (LPT).d. Right click on the ComPort used by your sewing machine and select properties from the menu.e. Select the Port Settings tab.f. Check the Flow Control. Try all three settings (Xon / Xoff, Hardware, None) from the drop down menu. The default setting is generally Xon / Xoff.g. Set the Flow Control to Xon / Xoff and try to connect.h. Set the Flow Controlet to Hardware and try to connect. If you are successful you may want to play with the Bits per second to get the fastest connection.

NOTE: If you are still experiencing non-communication between your computer and Pfaff creative machine, and have completed the above steps, continue with each successive step below until you are able to transfer a design to your machine.
A ComPort sends information to your Serial Port. Your computer can have several virtual ComPorts for each physical Serial Port. We have found that removing the existing virtual ComPorts and restarting the computer, can force the computer to find the ComPort the machine is connected to.  – Caryn

How do I get Pfaff 7560 embroidery designs onto CD or onto my computer?

Hi! I am lamenting the passing of my beloved Pfaff 7560 embroidery machine. I have about 50 cards that I purchased from Pfaff over the years, but they, of course, won’t fit my new machine. I know there has to be a way to get the one or two designs I can’t live without saved to my computer, right? Please? Tell me it’s so? My new machine recognizes the Pfaff format if I can only get the designs to it. Help!


To read the information from a Pfaff card onto a computer you need either:

*A Pfaff sewing machine with a card slot and a computer connection. 
*A Pfaff Card station
*A reader writer unit like The Ultimate Box

Have a look at this page on the Secrets of Embroidery site to find out everything about the Ultimate Box

You can even have a look at comparisons to other similar units as well.

There is a list of the machine cards that can be read by the different  versions.  You would need version . III for the Pfaff  series of cards. I would think that this would be your least expensive option.

Carolyn Duncan

Pfaff 2170 Folder Listing

Hello Carolyn

My son helped me find your blog as I bought the serial to usb cable. I have found most of the nooks and crannies to make the computer talk to the pfaff 2144 (upgraded to 2170).

When I pull up the VIP file assistant I am getting an error message ‘error occurred while getting a folder listing  from the machine’.

Any thoughts on fixing this error? I am runing Vista 32bit on my computer. The computer seems to be running the program fine, I thought maybe I need to update the file assistant somehow.  Thank you for any assistance.


Pfaff 7570 Conversion

I have a PFAFF 7570 Creative Machine can this be converted to any newer version? Thanks – Miel

Hi Miel,

Unfortunately no, as this was the last of the Pfaff 7000 series machines. The 2000 series that replaced them started with the 2140 model that could be upgraded to a 2144 and then to a 2170.

Anyone who purchased a 2170 would not be able to upgrade it further as the CV range came out next and replaced the 2000 series. At present the CV is the only model that can be upgraded.I would assume that Pfaff are probably working on the next range to replace the CV series. It makes you wonder what features can be added but back in the 70’s I thought my TOL 1200 series pfaff was really flash. In those days computers took up the whole floor of a building and the internet was only used by academics to keep in touch. I wonder what the next 40 years will bring? As I need to live to be 150 to be able to achieve all I want to do in my life, I plan to be around to find out. I have heard it said that the infants at school today will finally graduate and go to jobs that do not exist yet !

Carolyn Duncan

Pfaff Cable & Drivers

Hi Carolyn,

I think you have a great site and I am hoping, of all people, you can help me. I purchased a used 2144 last year and it has the 2170 software in it (so the dealer said). The 2144 comes with a cable that has one end intended to go into the 2144 card slot and the other end connects to a PC’s USB port. I am supposed to be able to transfer my designs from my PC in 3D Embroidery using File Assistant to the sewing machine. There is nothing in the sewing manual or the software manual about making the connections and getting the drivers to to run the PC/Cable/Sewing Machine connection. I am running 3D Embroidery on my old computer running XP. It was a nightmare trying to get it to run on my laptop with Vista or my brand new computer running a Vista 64-bit operating system.

Anyway, when I plug in the USB cable into the XP computer the dialog box comes up saying “Detected New Hardware” and begins the process of finding drivers for it. Of course, it cannot find any. To my knowledge there is not a driver CD disk that came with the cable connection that needs to be installed. I thought maybe there might be drivers on the 3D Embroidery CD disks that I inadvertantly did not install so I looked and I found two drivers for USB, that were not installed, but they were for the Viking.

I just don’t have a clue how to get the designs from the software to my machine. What should I do?

Thank you so much for this blog!


P.S. I do have a StitchLink II that came with all of this “stuff” I got in my package from the dealer the day I bought my Pfaff 2144. It is a wireless technology, but not really sure how to connect it all together either, but it does have a disk for drivers.


The 2144 originally had a serial pin cable to transfer designs to the SM. About the time that the 2170 was released the USB cable became available. The drivers for the cable are downloaded from the cable manufacturers site. If it is a belkin cable then  Belkin support will have the driver.  You will need to know the number of the cable to get the correct driver.  There are different drivers for XP and Vista.

The USB cable is only compatible with 3D File Assistant version 7 or later and will not work with earlier versions.  If this is the case you will need to get a USB Serial Adapter.  This converts a USB port to a serial port, which is how the earlier cables and versions of File Assistant worked. Three USB Serial Adapters that are compatible with the 2170 are:

– Belkin F5U103

– Belkin F5U109

– Keyspan USA-19QW

You should be able to get 3D running on Vista.  Drivers for the dongel are available on the Pfaff site.

Carolyn Duncan

Splitting a Design for the Grand Hoop

Hi, I have a Pfaff 2140 that has been updated to a 2170. I have the 3-D Suite and a Grand Hoop. I recently purchased a 10 inch jacket back pattern that I thought I could split and put in the Grand Hoop to embroider out on a shirt. I’m obviously doing something wrong because when I try to split it I get a notice that the pattern is too big for the hoop and I have the hoop size set at 300×300. That is how I downloaded the pattern. Can’t I split it in the 300×300 hoop, then move it to the Grand Hoop? HELP? Any ideas you have to help me are greatly appreciated. – Delores

Hi Delores,

You will need to split the design into two sections and save them as separate files. Make sure that each design is centered in the large hoop first.

Next re-open them in the appropriate sides of the grand hoop and realign. Then save them as a grand hoop file.

Carolyn Duncan

Grand Hoop Problems

Please can you help me, for the past 4 months I have been trying to sew a wallhanging project on the Grand Hoop (Pfaff 2170) without success with this script (supplied). I have tried working with Carolyn Duncan’s Sew What Designs also Pfaff Manual, I have moved it every way possible but still no success so I would be grateful if you could shed some light to this problem.

I look forward to hearing from you.
Phyllis Robinson

Hi Phyllis,

The main pointers are:

– Text in the grand hoop can be a problem as the lines of text must NOT be color sorted before splitting

– Problems with automatic splitting of text can be due to the placement of the starting position of the line of text and the center position of the line – they must both be on one side of the hoop

Manual splitting can be faster and simpler that fiddling with many lines of text so that they can be automatically split.

Carolyn Duncan