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Read and Write A Tag Value From PI-Server Using PI-SDK Through VBA (Visual Basic)

13 Mar

Reading a tag value from PI-Server

Private Function TargetValue()
Dim valueRet As String
Dim srv As Server
Dim dt As New PITimeFormat
Dim pt As PIPoint

Dim MYPIServer As PISDK.Servers
Set srv = PISDK.Servers.DefaultServer

TargetValue = srv.PIPoints(“Target”).Data.Snapshot

‘ Target is the tag name here.
End Function

Writing a tag value to PI-Server

‘***************************Writing into Target Tag****************************
Private Sub WriteTargetInstructionPI()
Dim srv As Server
Dim dt As New PITimeFormat
Dim pt As PIPoint

Dim MYPIServer As PISDK.Servers
Set srv = PISDK.Servers.DefaultServer

TagName = “Target”
Set pt = srv.PIPoints(TagName) ‘ it’s your PI point

dt.InputString = “*”        ‘it’s data. InputString – Converting String in PIdata format

pt.Data.UpdateValue TextBoxTarget.Text, dt, dmReplaceDuplicates ‘function for Update (reed help)

End Sub


Note: I have used Sub for writing the tag value and Function for reading tag value for my own business logic. You can use either Function or Sub according to your own requirements.


Java based OPC UA library replacement to .NET’s DCOM

3 Mar

Inductive Automation uses OPC UA to build its industrial platform on Java and offers the Ignition OPC UA server for free, whether users purchase the Ignition software or not. Keep reading to request a free activation key.

Inductive Automation was the first private organization to write their own OPC Unified Architecture (UA) stack—and they chose to write it completely in Java. The company’s vision was to develop control system software that was not dependent on any particular operating system. The old OPC spec was based on Microsoft’s Distributed Component Object Model (DCOM), which tied every OPC server to Windows. 

In order to achieve their goals of a software platform that would work on any system, Inductive Automation needed an OPC server that wouldn’t lock their software into a Windows-only environment. 

“We made the decision that we wanted everything written in Java so that users would have the freedom to choose their operating system,” said Colby Clegg, software developer for Inductive Automation. “The platform-neutral OPC UA specification enabled us to write our own stack in Java. Now our entire software package is in Java, and this offers a lot of benefits for users.” 

The result was the Ignition OPC UA server, which can work either as a stand-alone OPC server for third-party OPC UA clients, or as part of the comprehensive Ignition software package. In either case, it provides fast, reliable, and secure access to PLC data through its pluggable driver architecture. 

Why Java? 


Java is one of the most popular programming languages in the world (see the TIOBE Programming Community Index for September 2010). Java runs on more types of consumer and embedded devices, smart cards, ATMs, thin clients, PCs, servers, and mainframes than any other language. 

“Java is the ‘write once, run anywhere’ language,” said Steve Hechtman, president of Inductive Automation. “This is a major reason why we selected it. By writing Ignition in Java, it runs equally well on Linux as it does on OSX, Windows or Solaris.”

Java is also highly resistant to viruses. It is designed from the ground up to be more secure than legacy programming languages, offering a rich array of features that prevent many common security holes. That makes it ideally suited to the industrial environment.

“Rather than following the flock and just selecting the current Microsoft technology, we took a step back and evaluated what language provided the most portability, security, stability and support—and Java was the clear winner,” Hechtman said.

Why Free?

Inductive Automation offers the Ignition OPC UA server for free, whether users purchase the Ignition software or not. “We want the market to get excited about the potential of OPC-UA,” explains Clegg, “and in the freedom of selecting your own platform. Plus, once users get started with Ignition, we’re confident that they’ll be blown away by everything it can do.”

The Ignition OPC-UA server is free and can be used with any OPC-UA client: Simply request a free activation key, download the software, and get started using it on your control system. It features an open driver API, and includes free Allen Bradley and Modbus TCP drivers.

The activation key and download page can be accessed here:


This article is fully copied from

All credit goes to it’s parent website. I have just shared this information

What is KEPServer?

11 Jun

Introduction to KEPServerEx

KEPServerEx is a 32-bit windows application that provides a means of bringing data and information from a wide range of industrial devices and systems into client applications on your windows PC. KEPServerEx falls under the category of a “Server” application. It is very common to hear the term “client/server application” in use across many software disciplines and business segments. In the industrial market, it has usually come to mean the sharing of manufacturing or production data between a variety of applications ranging from human machine interface software and data historians, to large MES and ERP applications.

Regardless of the business segment served, client/server applications have one thing in common, a standardized method of sharing data. In the industrial segment many client/server technologies have been developed over the last ten years. Initially some of these technologies were proprietary. In many cases these proprietary client/server architectures were in wide use but remained unavailable to third party applications. Early in the development of windows Microsoft provided a generic client server technology called DDE or Dynamic Data Exchange. DDE did provide a basic architecture that would allow many windows applications from a wide range of vendors to share data, but there was one problem. DDE was not designed for the industrial market; it lacked much of the speed and robustness desired in an industrial setting. However, this did not stop DDE from becoming dominant client/server architecture, largely due to its availability in most windows applications. In time, variations on Microsoft’s DDE were developed by some of the leading vendors in the market. These variations addressed some of the speed and reliability issues of DDE but many people in the industrial segment agreed that a better system needed to be developed.

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What is PI Server?

2 Nov

Much of this information is copied from OSI Soft

Business Challenge: Where PI Server is used?

Process-focused manufacturing companies produce copious amounts of data from a wide variety of sources throughout their operations. Usually data of plants like you have installed boilers, chillers etc. Plant managers and business executives need to have access to this information, in a meaningful and practical format, so they can direct operations toward best profitability and
productivity, and conduct effective business planning. Information aggregation from a multitude of sources manually or through custom programming can be costly and slow to deliver business value. E.g previously this process was manual. Plant manger manually collect the reading and then process. Important thing here is that process was manual i,e done by the humans.

Companies need to find a way to unify the streams of information from many sources into a single, comprehensive system that lets them accomplish their business goals as they manage their operation to achieve the highest levels of performance
and productivity.

PI Server: What it is?

The PI Server™ is the real-time data collection, archiving and distribution engine that powers the PI System™. The PI Server brings all relevant data from your many disparate sources into a single system, secures it so appropriate access is given to individuals based on their roles and delivers it to users at all levels of the company in a uniform and consistent manner. The PI Server optimizes data storage to provide needed fidelity while delivering data instantly. As a result, users have a comprehensive real-time and historical
view into operational, IT infrastructure and business activities enabling them to make timely and profitable decisions.

How to find PI SDK/Server Documentation (Programming Guide)?

17 Oct

When I started PI Server Programming the first problem I got, was to find the programming guide/documentation of PI SDK. So I Googled it but unable to find the documentation. Yesterday I was desperate to find the PI Server Documentation so I tried random. Finally I was very happy when I was successful. Actually it was very easy.

So I decided to write about it.

Here is a step by step process