How to Setup LightBurn on Your Thunder Laser Machine

setup lightburn on your thunder laser machine. practice before you get your laser

Install Lightburn Trial:

You get 30 days to LightBurn for free. You can install LightBurn and then create a mock Device for your future machine. This will allow you to explore Lightburn and its features in preparation for your machine.

More information can be found here: LightBurn Trial Information

Configure Lightburn Device Mock up for Machine

You must create a mock device with either a non-working USB or Ethernet connection that can be edited in the future once you recieve your machine. This mock setup will allow you to play around in Lightburn. Lightburn will prompt you to create the Device profile at start up.

Download Lightburn from here

See note down below about the USB FTDI driver, you will need to install it during the initial Lightburn Install process.

Setup your Lightburn install with a Mock machine while your wait on your machine to be delivered:

Support Article: LightBurn Trial Mock Nova Setup>>

Activate your License for Lightburn When you are Ready:

You will receive your license key in an email from the Thunder Laser Canada sales team. Be sure to check your spam box.

We suggest using the trial up before activating your license.

If you can’t find you Lighburn key, please emails and we will get it to you asap.

Trial or License Activation – LightBurn Software Documentation


Check for Latest Version of Lightburn and Bug Fixes:

In Lightburn: Help>Check For Updates

Lightburn Bug Fixes

Lightburn Releases

Check for Trial License Remaining

(enter full license key from email here)

In Lightburn: Help> License Management

-Lightburn Trial Status

-Lightburn License Management Portal

Check that Lightburn is Communicating with your Laser:

If you cannot get Lightburn to say’ Ready’ instead of disconnected and to find your Ruida Controller, you will need to double check your USB or Ethernet Setup.

You can also try to right click on the “Devices” button in the Lightburn Laser Window to make Lightburn look for your machine.

If you have created multiple Devices, make sure you have the right one selected in the drop down selection next to the Devices button.

Not Connected: Connected:


Backup Machine Settings To Computer:

Once Lightburn is communicating with the laser you can backup the machine settings

In Lightburn: Edit>Machine Settings

Let it read the machine settings and then save them to your ‘Thunder Lightburn” folder of choice.

Upload Parameters from Laser machine to Lightburn for Time Estimate:

Once Lightburn is communicating with the laser you perform this step.

This is to help you get better time estimates so you can quote your jobs and manage your workflows better.

More information can be found here: Improving Job Time Estimates In LightBurn’s Preview

Enter Scanning Offsets from Gold Card:

Do this before attempting to do any Fill layer engraves and make sure Lightburn is in millimitres when entering these values. Otherwise you will get double prints. And be sure to Enable the offsets by clicking the slider to Green.

More information can be found here: Thunder Laser Scanning Offset Adjustment

Once you enter the offsets, Export them and save them to your “Thunder Lightburn” folder of choice.

Install FTDI Driver for Windows USB:

If you plan to use USB to connect to your Laser, be sure to follow the prompt at the end of the Lightburn installer to also install the FTDI driver which is required for Windows computers. 

For MACs, you should update to the latest drivers, see the topic below for more on that.

More information can be found here:

Connecting A Thunder Laser To LightBurn Via USB

Update FTDI Driver for Mac USB:

For MAC’s, if you plan to stick with USB, you will be required to update your FTDI driver else you could run into incomplete file transfer and communication issues.

More information can be found here:

New FTDI Driver Solves Mac USB Issues

Ethernet Setup for Mac and Windows:

If you decide to use Ethernet, you will need to follow the guides here in order to set it up to work. Each user’s ethernet config can be different based on your network setup, WIFI IP Addressing, adapters etc.

More information can be found here:

Windows: Connecting A Thunder Laser To LightBurn Via Ethernet

Mac: Connecting A Thunder Laser to Lightburn Via Ethernet