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Siemens WinCC OA - The Open Architecture SCADA Package
Leon Grossman

Siemens WinCC OA - The Open Architecture SCADA Package

When asked if we work with a particular technology here at DMC, my answer is always "yes". PLC, Embedded, Test and Measurement, Business Logic: we do it all and more. WinCC OA (OA) is the spiritual analogue to that philosophy in SCADA form. There are native drivers for Siemens and Allen Bradley PLCs as well as an OPC driver so it will work with nearly any modern controller. Supporting a wide range of hardware is expected of a product that is targeted to the same space as Wonderwa...

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Hitting the Ground Running…to China
Ryan Landwehr

Hitting the Ground Running…to China

As we enter the Christmas season, I can’t help but think back to this time last year. I was less than three months away from graduating college and faced with a big decision. It was only a few days before Christmas Eve, that I decided to start the next chapter of my life at DMC Boston. Before I knew it, June rolled around and I found myself on a city bus in Chicago heading into my first day of training at the Chicago office. I’d had summer internships in the past and felt like I had ...

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B&R Automation Studio: Troubleshoot Hardware Using Network Command Trace
Otto Gottlieb

B&R Automation Studio: Troubleshoot Hardware Using Network Command Trace

I recently had to troubleshoot an issue in which my servo drive was not responding to my PLC commands - as expected. In order to see the interaction between the PLC and the servo drive, I used the Network Command Trace.   Learn more about DMC's B&R Automation Studio Programming Services.

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Informational Webinar 11/12: Changing Machinery, Changing Software
Tim Jager

Informational Webinar 11/12: Changing Machinery, Changing Software

Join John Sullivan in conjunction with Siemens for a complimentary 45-minute educational webinar focused on converting industrial equipment from one vendor's tools to another. The webinar will be held on Wednesday, November 12 (1 p.m. CDT) and will be targeted toward those interested in software conversions for machinery. A variety of business demands can require a company to convert their industrial equipment from one vendor’s gear to another supplier’s tools. The m...

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Siemens PLC Communication with I-Device
Jimmy Condon

Siemens PLC Communication with I-Device

For a couple of recent projects I needed to transfer a few bytes between Siemens PLCs. I had used PUTs and GETs in the past, which I find very useful for sending large amounts of data. But if I only need to send a few bytes or speed is critical, setting up one of the PLCs as slave to the other PLC can be more efficient. Siemens makes this quick to do with I-Device, and I’ll show a couple of examples below. S7-300 PLCs and Profibus, Both PLCs In The Same TIA Portal Project When u...

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B&R Automation Studio: Create Popup Windows on HMI Pages
Otto Gottlieb

B&R Automation Studio: Create Popup Windows on HMI Pages

Creating popup windows on HMI pages enhances the interaction between the operator and the machine. The creation of popup windows in Automation Studio involves many other important aspects of making an HMI more dynamic such as formatting layers on pages, controlling and using the HMI display in program code, and manipulating the statuses of HMI elements. If you are new to creating HMI pages with Automation Studio, then you can learn a lot from this video. Learn more about DMC's B&R Aut...

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Using an S7-1200 PLC as a Modbus TCP Slave
Jason Mayes

Using an S7-1200 PLC as a Modbus TCP Slave

Have a need to make data available from your S7-1200 PLC to a Modbus TCP Master (or SCADA)? Luckily, this is easy to setup. This will be short and sweet. Siemens provides two Instruction blocks for setting up Client/Server Modbus TCP connections – you can find them under Communication on the Instructions Window – MB_SERVER and MB_CLIENT. As an example, let’s set up a Modbus TCP server on our PLC. I’m starting a project from scratch, so I’m going to add an ...

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Source Code Protection For Your SIMATIC S7-1200 PLC in TIA Portal
Jason Mayes

Source Code Protection For Your SIMATIC S7-1200 PLC in TIA Portal

From time to time, we'll run across situations where a client believes it is necessary to lock down code on a PLC. In some cases, there may be valuable intellectual property they would like to protect. In others, its purpose may be to prevent unauthorized modifications to safety-related code, or activation of disabled options. There may also be cases where it is necessary to interlock a PLC program to a specific memory card or CPU, especially in cases where there may be multiple, similar (bu...

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Troubleshooting Your Siemens SIMATIC S7-1200 Timers
Jason Mayes

Troubleshooting Your Siemens SIMATIC S7-1200 Timers

I've done a lot of PLC programming over the last few years. Siemens, Rockwell, Beckhoff, Mitsubishi, Panasonic... if it's IEC61131-3 compliant, I've probably written a few rungs on it. However, I recently ran across an interesting problem that completely stumped me. I was doing a quick test on an S7-1200 PLC (programmed in TIA Portal V13) where I needed to perform a non-time critical operation approximately once a second within a re-usable FB. The two rungs that confounded me and ...

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View DMC's 2014 Siemens Automation Summit Presentations
Tim Jager

View DMC's 2014 Siemens Automation Summit Presentations

DMC attended the annual Siemens Automation Summit last month, held June 23 - 26, 2014. We enjoyed four days of learning and networking with new friends at Walt Disney World's Contemporary Resort in Orlando, FL. The week kicked off with Monday night's popular Connect Event. This casual cocktail event allowed attendees to build their network using a mobile friendly app or website developed by DMC and Prism Systems to connect and share contact information. Attendees also got a previ...

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DMC Joins Siemens SIMATIC IT Partner Program
Tim Jager

DMC Joins Siemens SIMATIC IT Partner Program

DMC is proud to announce its affiliation with the Siemens SIMATIC IT Partner Program. SIMATIC IT Partners offer value added services helping customers realize solutions tailored to their unique business environments in order to maximize the efficiency of MES installations. We're excited to join a community of technical experts with industry specific know-how who are recognized as high-level consultants dedicated to helping customers achieve their business goals. SIMATIC IT Partners a...

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Beckhoff Automation and Programming Demo at DMC
Simon Healey

Beckhoff Automation and Programming Demo at DMC

Beckhoff visited the DMC Chicago office not long ago in order to demo some cool automation equipment. Many of us are already familiar with Beckhoff’s products, but it was really valuable to be able to take a step back from working with the equipment just to see it from an operational standpoint. For those DMC engineers who don’t work with Beckhoff equipment as often, this was an amazing opportunity to get more intimately acquainted with the hardware.  For those who don’...

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Source Code Protection in Studio 5000 Logix Designer
Jason Mayes

Source Code Protection in Studio 5000 Logix Designer

While working with a customer on a recent RSLogix 5000 project (now called Studio 5000), there was a need to protect some proprietary source code. In this particular case, DMC had developed a custom Add-On Instruction (AOI) to be used within the project that contained some unique logic that the client wished to protect. This is incredibly easy to do. Rockwell provides an easy tool for this that comes prepackaged with RSLogix.  Since protecting intellectual property or touchy algorithms w...

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WinCC Professional Popups
Jimmy Condon

WinCC Professional Popups

For a recent project using WinCC Professional V12, I needed to have a pop up window that could change based on the screen window that the operator clicks (motor, VFD, valve, etc.). The popup also needed to have its location change based on where the screen window was that the operator clicked. To implement the popup, I added a screen window to the starting screen. I did not assign any of its properties: I gave it a visibility animation based on an internal tag (“bShowPopup”...

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VB Script to Save an SSRS Report as a PDF
Jack Cosgrove

VB Script to Save an SSRS Report as a PDF

Reporting is almost a universal requirement for new projects coming into DMC these days. As part of an HMI we developed for a customer we also installed SQL Server Reporting Services (SSRS) on a Siemens PLC. This is used to generate reports for production batches run on that PLC. The customer desired these reports to be in PDF format, which after some investigation was easy to do with SSRS. A little background on SSRS... SSRS is a web application that generates nice graphical reports from SQL...

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Siemens S7-1200 Web Server Tutorial - From Getting Started to HTML5 User Defined Pages
Tim Jager

Siemens S7-1200 Web Server Tutorial - From Getting Started to HTML5 User Defined Pages

This is a brief tutorial on getting started with the Siemens embedded web server in the S7-1200 and S7-1500.  Using the concepts explained below, you can create a simple web page or a fully featured HTML5 web app.  Getting Started Step 1.  Turn on the web server.  To do this, navigate to the web server menu in the device configuration page and check the box to enable the web server.   Step 2: Download your project to your PLC and browse to its IP add...

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DMC to Present at the Siemens 2013 Automation Summit
Frank Riordan

DMC to Present at the Siemens 2013 Automation Summit

As a Siemens Solution Partner, DMC looks forward to attending the annual Siemens Automation Summit each year. Focused on the end users of Siemens automation products, the Summit offers opportunities for best practice sharing, networking, free hands-on training, and providing product input and prioritization for future enhancements. This year’s event, held June 24 – 27 in New Orleans, focuses on the theme of “Community. Experiences. Productivity."   This year, DMC ...

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Extracting Log Data from a Siemens PLC Using a .NET Client
Jack Cosgrove

Extracting Log Data from a Siemens PLC Using a .NET Client

I had the opportunity recently to work for a client who wanted to extract log data from a Siemens WinAC PLC using a C# .NET client. The application was archiving software that would run when another software component encountered an error. Log data was assembled from a variety of sources in the system stack, including the Siemens PLC. In order to keep the PLC's Step 7 code independent of this diagnostic logging, I used the Siemens WinAC ODK. The WinAC API exposes two interfaces, IPLC and ...

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Automating Siemens S7 and SiMotion Tasks Using C# .NET
Jon Carson

Automating Siemens S7 and SiMotion Tasks Using C# .NET

Siemens offers useful tools for accessing both Simatic and SiMotion projects programmatically, in the form of registered COM Type Library DLLs. These tools offer many exciting possibilities (well, it does if you're like me, and get excited by things like automating automation tools). If you have Simatic Manager installed, the following DLLs are registered with it: S7hcom_x 1.0 Type Library - The default location on my laptop is C:\Program Files (x86)\Siemens\Step7\S7BIN\S7HCOM_X.DLL) S...

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Getting Young Kids Interested in Technology
Frank Riordan

Getting Young Kids Interested in Technology

I'm always trying to get my daughters, ages 8 & 5, interested in what we do here at DMC. It's a challenge because I have a hard enough time explaining what DMC does to someone I meet at a cocktail party, never mind a couple of young kids. However, I recently had two great experiences with them that actually piqued their interest. The first was a trip to Legoland in Carlsbad, California. In addition to Miniland USA, Land of Adventure and other fun rides, there also is a Lego Factory T...

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