Installations, Channels, Gateway
Data sent from the plant to the IPLAS system are transferred as part of the so-called installation. The installation corresponds to the site in the plant where the Gateway module (which is described below) has been installed. If the plant transmits data via several Gateway modules, consequently there will be more installations as well.
In the installations, there are additional so-called channels, which are logical groups of data coming from a specific source.
Below is a description of how to create and configure the installation, how to run the Gateway module as well as how to define channels.
The process of creating an installation starts by entering the Installations – Manage tab, which will display the Installation List on the screen.
The New installation button opens a page with fields requiring the entry of the Code and Name of the installation. In the Description field you can freely describe the created installation. The Save button adds it to the Installation List. The installation is a logical mapping of the location where connections to a data source (e.g. PLC) are established. The central point of the installation is the Gateway module that manages the reading of data and transferring it to the IPLAS system.
The next step is to download the Gateway module, which will transfer the data for further processing and saving. To download the Gateway module, open the Manage tab in the Installations list and it will display the Installation List. On the list for a given installation, click the Download Gateway button.
The downloaded file should be unpacked (e.g. using the 7-Zip program) to any location on the disk. Then, open the extracted folder and go to the bin directory. Using a simple text editor such as Notepad, edit the _setVars.bat file, changing the values for APPLICATION_SERVICE_HOME to the path of the bin folder and GTW_JAVA_HOME to the path of the Java Runtime folder.
The next step is to move the iPlasGateway.exe file from the amd64 folder to the bin directory and confirm the file change in the target location. Open the iPlasGatewayw.exe file and start the service in the dialog window.
In the event of communication breakdown on the Gateway-IPLAS route, e.g. due to lack of connection to the IPLAS system, the Gateway modules will collect data locally. The system replenishes them automatically when the connection is restored. Data is backed up both in an unprocessed and processed form.
Data from the Gateway module is transferred in logical channels that are configured for the selected installation.
The channel is the connection between the data source and the installation on the IPLAS server through which the data is transferred. The channel defines what types of information are read, how often they are read and from where.
The channel configuration is started by entering the Manage installations tab and selecting a specific installation for which a channel will be added. Use the New channel button to open the configuration page where it is required to enter the Channel Code and its Name. The technical configuration of the channel consists in selecting a Plug-in (for the analyzed case it is UA-UA Plugin), entering the URL of the server from which the variables will be downloaded, and filling in the fields with an optional login and password of the user.
In the Reading interval field, you can set the time in milliseconds between successive data readings from the server. We will also set the time in milliseconds to reconnect to the server.
A list with variables read from a given server, the data of which will be needed to build your own processing procedures or to research production data, can be created by downloading variables from a given server or by entering them yourself by clicking the New variable button.
The Download variables from server button opens the Variable search tab, where the variables from the OPC server are searched and selected that contain data for further processing.
The variables read from the server are automatically given the name of the OPC tag. When adding a new variable, it is required to enter a unique OPC tag name. Based on the OPC specification, the server software is responsible for naming the tags, so it is important that the name of the newly added variable is unique in a given channel. The variables can also be given an IPLAS name that will appear in IPLAS processing and a descriptive name that will appear in reports.
A data type must be set for each variable in the list. In processing, input variables can be integers, floating point numbers, dates, text, booleans, arrays or timestamps. Setting the Key to Yes for a given variable will make it be used to identify frames with data. This means that the data will be sent via Gateway to the IPLAS system only when any of the variables marked as a key changes its value.
In the Actions column, given variable can be removed from the list of read variables. The Add new channel button saves the entered data.
The channel configuration can be divided into 2 parts, the common part – code, name, channel description and plug-in selection; an individual part for individual plugins.
|Channel code*||Technical name of the channel, the allowed characters are letters from a to z (without diacrtitics), digits and characters _ and –|
|Channel name*||Name displayed on the list of channels, may include any characters|
|Description||Space for a lengthy description (500 characters)|
|Plugin*||List of plugins available|
DB_DICT – Database – dictionary
The plugin is used to read dictionary information from sql, postgres and mysql databases. It reads the entire table each time, which makes it perfect for e.g. reading the types of products created on individual lines.
|Connection url||external database address e.g. jdbc: postgresql: //0.0.0.0: 0 / BaseName|
|User Name||database login|
|Password||password for the above user|
|SQL query||query retrieving data in SQL language, e.g. select column1 from SampleTable|
|Reading interval||interval between consecutive reading attempts expressed in seconds|
|Database column name||column specified in the SQL query|
|IPLAS name||technical name of the column under which it will be recognized in the IPLAS system|
|Data type||data type in the IPLAS system, e.g. (text – equivalent to text, character varying; integer – equivalent to int, floating point – equivalent to float, numeric, double; boolean – equivalent to boolean; date – equivalent to Date; timestamp – equivalent to timestamp)|
|Descriptive name||variable name visible in the processing|
|Time stamp||expression specifying the time stamp of the read rows, e.g. ts: time (columnA), ts: time (columnB, “yyyy-MM-dd HH: mm: ss”)|