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What are Modules?

Modules are applications that are built on the Ignition platform and integrate into the platform in order to offer functionality. Most of the main features of Ignition are actually provided by different modules such as the Vision and SQL Bridge modules.

Modules integrate seamlessly into the system and provide things like new Designer workspaces, new Gateway settings, new drivers, and much more.

Why Modules?

The modules in Ignition offer many benefits.

  • Flexible Licensing
    Only license the modules that you need, saving money and reducing complexity compared to big monolithic applications that try to do everything. At the same time, the modules have been designed to offer a broad swath of functionality, to avoid having too many pieces.
     
  • Hot-Swappable
    Modules can be dynamically loaded and unloaded, allowing you to install, remove, and upgrade them without affecting other parts of the system. This can have huge implications for big projects where up-time is important.

  • Increase System Stability
    Building modules on a common platform means fewer bugs, better isolation, and all around increased stability.
     
  • Pluggable Module Architecture
    The pluggable module architecture allows quick integration of new modules into the Ignition platform. From time to time new modules will be released which add additional features. Third-party modules that provide a wide range of functionality are also available.

Installing, Upgrading, Uninstalling, or Restarting a Module

All module configuration is done from Gateway in the Configuration > Modules section. From here you can add, remove, and restart modules. Modules integrate their settings into the Gateway configuration tree, and therefore do not offer settings in this section.

Installing or Updating a Module

  1. On the Configuration > Modules page, go to the bottom of the list, find the orange arrow, and click the Install or Upgrade a Module link.
     
  2. Click Choose File, select the .modl file.
     
  3. Click Install.
    You can now see the module you installed in the list of modules. 

Note: Modules can be running side-by-side in both Trial mode and Activated mode, see About Licensing for more information. Also when installing a module, there is no need to restart the server.

Uninstalling a Module

After you select the module, click the uninstall link on the far-right next to the module entry in the table, then click Confirm.

Modules are hot-swappable, this means these actions can be performed while the system is running. Furthermore, the isolated nature of modules ensures that performing one of these actions only affects that particular module, and any modules which depend on it. For example, uninstalling the SQL Bridge module will not affect any running Vision module clients.

Restarting a Module

Modules can be restarted by clicking the restart button next to their entries on the Configuration > Modules page. Because of the isolated nature of modules, the other modules are not affected by the restart (unless they depend on that particular module).

Module Status

The installed module list on the Configuration > Modules page also provides some basic information about the State of the module. The VersionLicense, and State columns are all displayed in the list. Module licensing is performed centrally in System > Licensing, so the values here are only for information purposes.

The module State can be either Running or Loaded. Running means the module programs are actively performing tasks, for example, the Alarm Notification modules shows as Running because it is continually checking for condition changes that need to set the alarm on or off. Loaded means the module program or resources are available but nothing is running, for example, the Symbol Factory module makes all the symbol images available for your use.

Third-Party Modules

Third Party Modules are Ignition modules that were were produced by someone other than Inductive Automation. Our open SDK allows anyone to create and test your own modules. Be aware that loading any modules from an untrusted source could potentially do harm to your projects or your data. 

 

 

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