According to one of the most popular control manufacturers in the industry, one of the biggest causes of machine down-time is related to parameters. It is not uncommon for a control to be re-initialized during a repair. During this process all volatile data in the control will be lost, including programs, offsets, and parameters. This control manufacturer says it is not unusual for the service engineer to repair the control problem within minutes of arriving at the machine tool. However, if the CNC user has not kept a backup copy of the parameters, a great deal of time will be wasted (possibly days) while the service engineer uses trial-and-error techniques in an attempt to get the machine running again.
As the CNC user, you are responsible to keep a good backup of your parameters. You probably know that these parameters marry the control to the machine tool, and contain thousands of pieces of information about the machine tool. Without them, the machine cannot function.
Given the importance of parameters, it is amazing how many companies pay little or now attention to their parameters. Maybe they have been lucky (so far) and not had any problems with the machine that caused the control to need re-initialing. However, all CNC users should keep an updated copy of their parameters for all machines they own.
Most CNCs have flash drives that allow parameters to be saved and retrieved using the same methods as CNC programs. You can easily transfer each machine's parameters today!