By default, current alarm data is only stored in memory, and a finite number of events are retained for each alarm. Fortunately, Ignition can easily be configured to store alarm data into a SQL database with an Alarm Journal Profile. The journal can store basic data about alarms that have occurred, such as their source and timestamp, associated data on the alarm, and the values of the alarm's properties at the time the event occurred. The Alarm Journal is used by the Alarm Journal Table component, and can be accessed through scripting functions and direct database queries.

The Gateway can have more than one Alarm Journal.  Alarm Journals have options to filter which Alarms are stored in the journal, therefore, by having more than one alarm journal configured on the Gateway, it is possible to store some alarms in one journal, and different alarms in another journal. Once configured, the journal can be accessed by the Alarm Journal Table component, scripting functions, or direct database queries.

Alarm Journals can store data in one of three ways, and store data indefinitely unless a Data Pruning value is set: 

  • In a database, using an existing database connection from the Gateway
  • Remotely, using another Ignition Gateway's Alarm Journal profile
  • Internally, storing alarm information into the Ignition install directory

It is strongly encouraged to set a Data Pruning value for Internal Alarm Journal Profiles. Otherwise, it could cause your computer to run out of hard drive space.


Note: You must have an Alarm Journal Profile created and have a valid database connection to use the Alarm Journal Table.

Creating an Alarm Journal Profile

In Ignition, an Alarm Journal stores historical information about alarms in a database. It can store basic data about alarms that have occurred, such as source and timestamp, along with associated data on the alarm, and the values of the alarm's properties at the time the event occurred. You can choose to store your alarm data on an external database or automatically send it to a remote gateway's Alarm Journal to be logged. Both options are described in the sections below.

Create a single Alarm Journal Profile to store all of your alarms, or create multiple journals to store alarms across multiple databases. Each journal stores alarms based on the filters you set up and can prune data automatically after a set time limit.

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Create Alarm Journal Profile


Create an Alarm Journal to Log Events to an External Database

  1. Go to the Config section of the Gateway webpage.
  2. Choose Alarming > Journal from the menu on the left.  
  3. Look for the blue arrow and click on Create new Alarm Journal Profile.... The Alarm Journal Profiles screen will be displayed.



  4. You have the option of logging alarm journal events to an external database, logging locally, or sending them to a remote gateway's Alarm Journal. In this example, select Database, and click Next. 



  5. Enter the Name of your alarm journal profile. The default name is 'Journal.'  Most of the fields have default settings. Refer to the journal properties table below for setting descriptions, and update as necessary. Click the Create New Alarm Journal Profile button at the bottom of the page. Once completed, the tables will be created for you once an alarm event occurs. 




    Note: If you only have one alarm journal specified on your Gateway, then you do not need to specify the journal name on the Journal Name property. Ignition will set this for you. If you have more than one alarm journal created, then you need to provide the name of the journal you'd like to query in the Journal Name component property of the Property Editor.


Remote Alarm Journal Profile

Utilizing the gateway network, remote alarm journal profiles allow one Ignition gateway to sent local alarm events to a remote gateway for journal logging. This type of profile is useful in cases where alarm events need to be recorded by multiple alarm journal profiles. In addition, this type of profile is useful in Hub and Spoke architectures as it allows the hub to record the alarm events from each spoke,

Creating a Remote Alarm Journal Profile

Just like configuring alarm journal events to be logged into a database, it is done from the Gateway Webpage, Config > Alarming > Journal.

  1. To have your alarm journal events automatically sent to a remote gateway's alarm journal, select Remote, and click Next.


  2. A list of known Gateways will be displayed. If you don't see a gateway that you expected to see, check your Gateway Network settings to verify that the connections are valid. You also have the option to specify a gateway manually. This example selects a valid gateway. Click Next


  3. If an Alarm Journal exists on the remote gateway, the fields will automatically populate. The name of the gateway and the Alarm Journal Profile name will appear in the Name field prefaced with the alarm journal profile name,(i.e., Ignition_Test_Journal), as shown in the following example. Click Create New Alarm Journal Profile

  4. You will receive a successful message stating your new Alarm Journal Profile was created.


Remote Gateway Alarm Journal Properties Table

Main

Name

The default name, is the name of the Remote Gateway and Alarm Journal.

EnabledBy default. The journal profile is enabled.

Description

Description of the journal profile. Optional

Query Only

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If set to true, allows the alarm journal to opt out of being used for storage. When set to true, all alarm events will be discarded by the given journal.

Remote Gateway

Gateway Name

Name of the Remote Gateway.

Alarm Journal

Name of the Alarm Journal on the Remote Gateway.


Create an Internal Alarm Journal to Log Events Locally

Ignition Gateways can now create an Internal Alarm Journal Profile that stores Journal entries locally. Go to the Gateway webpage, Config > Alarming > Journal to create the Internal alarm journal profile.

  1. Click on the the Create new Alarm Journal Profile... link.
  2. Select Internal to have your alarm journal events logged locally.




  3. Enter the name of your alarm journal profile and update any settings as required, then click Next.




  4. You will receive a successful message stating your new Alarm Journal Profile was created.

Internal Alarm Journal Properties Table

Main

Name

The default name, is the name of the Remote Gateway and Alarm Journal.

Minimum PriorityOnly events equal to or greater than the specified priority will be stored.

Description

Description of the journal profile. Optional

Stored Shelved EventsIf enabled, events generated by "shelved" alarms will still be written to the journal system. Default is false.

Enabled

By default. The journal profile is enabled.

Alarm Journal Component

The Vision and Perspective modules feature built-in components that can automatically retrieve events recorded in an Alarm Journal. See Vision - Alarm Journal Table and Perspective - Alarm Journal Table for more information.


Journal Properties

Main

NameThe default name is Journal.
DatasourceEvents are stored to this datasource. (Only available on Database type profiles)
EnabledBy default. the journal profile is enabled.
DescriptionDescription of the journal profile.
Query OnlyWhen enabled, the alarm journal will not store alarm events. 
Use Store and ForwardEnabled by default, which means the alarm journaled events will be stored through the Store and Forward system. If not enabled, they will be stored directly against the database. This system protects data from being lost due to temporary database connectivity issues. (Only available on Database type profiles)

Events


Minimum PriorityOnly events equal to or greater than the specified priority will be stored. The default is Low. You can set the priority to be: Diagnostic, Low, Medium, High, and Critical.
Store Shelved Events

Not enabled by default. If enabled, events generated by "shelved" alarms will still be written to the journal system. 


Store Enabled & Disabled Events

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When enabled, enabling or disabling alarms will be stored as events in the journal. This includes cases where the Enabled property on an alarm is toggled, as well as cases where a Tag's Alarm Eval Enabled property is changed. 


Event Data


Static ConfigBy default, it is not selected. If selected, will store the values of static alarm configuration. That is, the alarm properties that are not bound. These do not change during evaluation, only when a user modifies them in the Designer, and so they are not stored by default.
Dynamic ConfigIf selected, will store the values of dynamically bound alarm configuration properties. The value of these properties can change at any time, and the values at the time of the alarm are captured on the alarm event.
Static Associated DataIf selected, will store the values of non-bound associated data (properties created by the user) properties on alarm that do not change during execution.
Dynamic Associated DataIf selected, will store the values of dynamically bound associated data (properties created by the user) properties.

Data Filters

Note: 

The following three properties interact via logical AND, meaning an alarm must meet the criteria for all three for it to be logged in the Journal. Thus, if you supply values for all three Data Filer properties, then an alarm must match the Filter by Alarm Source, Filter by Display Path, and Filter by Display Path or Source properties.

Example: If a journal has values for all three properties, and an alarm only meets the requirements for Filter by Alarm Source and Filter by Display Path or Source, but not Filter by Display Path, then the alarm will not be logged to the Journal.

If you want to filter on both the Display Path and Source Path, you would want to use only one of the two following approaches:

  • Filter by Alarm Source and Filter by Display Path
  • Only use Filter by Display Path or Source

It is recommended to avoid using all three properties simultaneously on the same Journal.

Filter by Alarm SourceOnly events matching the source will be stored. Multiple sources to match can be comma separated. Leave blank to store events from all sources.
Filter by Display PathOnly events matching the display path will be stored. Multiple display paths to match can be comma separated. Leave blank to store events from all display paths.
Filter by Display Path or SourceOnly events matching the display path, if defined, will be stored. Multiple matches can be comma separated. If no display path is defined, only events matching the source will be stored. Leave blank to store all events.

Data Pruning

Enable Data Pruning

If selected, data will be deleted after the specified time period as set by the Prune Age and Units below. Default is false.

Note: 

Since the data is stored directly in a database, an administrator is free to manually delete data at any time.


Prune AgeThe number of Prune Age Units to store data for. i.e., 1 year, 5 hours, etc. The default is 1.
Prune Age UnitsThe type of Prune Age Unit. Default is Years. You can choose the unit to be Milliseconds, Seconds, Minutes, Hours, Days, Weeks, Months, or Years.

Advanced

These settings let you specify your own table names. This is especially useful when trying to use multiple alarm profiles within a single database (not common, but can happen, especially with multiple systems sharing a single database).
Table NameThe table name for the core event table. The default is alarm_events.
Event Data Table Name

The table name for event data associated with alarms. The default is alarm_event_data.


Table Definitions

The Alarm Journal system will automatically create the necessary tables for you, and scripting functions can be used to query the system without having to know about the table structure. However, understanding the structure of the Alarm Journal tables can be useful for accessing the data in situations where SQL queries are more convenient.

Alarm Events (alarm_events)

This table stores the core data for each event that occurs. An event is a transition for an alarm between active, cleared, or acknowledged. Additionally, other events may be stored in this table that aren't directly related to an alarm, such as a system shutdown event. This table defines a primary key "id", that is used as a foreign key by the Alarm Event Data table, which stores additional information for each event.

Column Name

Data Type

Description

idintegerA unique integer id for each event entry event
eventidstringThe UUID of the alarm event.
sourcestring

The qualified path of the entity that generated the alarm event. See below for more information about qualified paths.

display pathstring

The value set for the "Display Path" of the alarm. Generally a user defined, friendlier version of the source.

priorityinteger

The priority or severity of the alarm:

0: Diagnostic
1: Low
2: Medium
3: High
4: Critical

eventtypeinteger

The type of transition represented by this event:

0: Active
1: Clear
2: Acknowledgement

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The following values were added in 8.1.8

4: An alarm was enabled
5: An alarm was disabled

eventflagsinteger

A numeric bitmask flag field providing additional information about the event.

Bit 0: System Event - One of the designated system events. (System Startup, System Shutdown)
Bit 1: Shelved Event - The alarm was "shelved" at the time that the event occurred. Shelving alarms does not prevent execution, so if the journal is configured to store shelved events, they will be stored even if they're not sent to the notification system, or shown to users.
Bit 2: System Acknowledgement - When the "live event limit" (defined in general alarm settings) is exceeded, the system will automatically acknowledge overflow events, and the acknowledgment event will have this flag set.
Bit 3: Acknowledge Event - The event was acknowledged at the time of the event. For events that are cleared after being acknowledged.
Bit 4: Cleared Event - The event was cleared at the time of the event. For alarms that are acknowledged after being cleared.


The following feature is new in Ignition version 8.1.8
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The following bit was added in version 8.1.8:

Bit 5: Enabled - Signifies that the enabled state on the alarm was changed. 

eventtimedatetimeThe time of the event.

Alarm Event Data (alarm_event_data)

This table stores the properties associated with an alarm event. The individual event is referenced through the ID column, against the alarm event table.

Column Name

Data Type

Description

idintegerThe id that corresponds to the alarm event in the alarm_events table.
propnamestringThe name of the property. May be one of the common alarm properties (a configuration setting), or the name of an associated data property.
dtypeintegerThe data type of the property, indicating which data column should be used:
0: Integer
1: Float
2: String
intvalue,
floatvalue,
strvalue
integer,
float (double),
string

The corresponding value columns for the property. Unused columns will
receive "null" values.

Qualified Paths

A qualified path in Ignition is a path to an object, described by various annotated components. Each component has a type identifier and a value, separated by a colon (:), and each component is separated by colon-forward slash (:/). For example, an alarm is identified by alm:Alarm Name. It usually exists under a Tag, in which case, its fuller path would be tag:Path/To/Tag:/alm:Alarm Name. Paths can be built up further depending on the level of specificity required by the situation.



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