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Version: 8.1

Allen Bradley Ethernet

Connecting to Allen-Bradley Devices

Ignition contains drivers for several Allen-Bradley devices. These drivers can connect directly through the Gateway to devices that support Ethernet communications and to devices that have access to an Ethernet card such as an ENBT or EN2T. The device drivers in the Allen-Bradley Ethernet Module are:


The Allen Bradley Ethernet drivers only support firmware versions 16 and up. Older firmware versions may work, but are unsupported. If your device does not meet these requirements, another OPC Server can be used to connect to them.


Direct connections to RSLinx Emulate 5000 are not supported, and may not work properly.

Verifying Device Connectivity

Device connectivity can be verified in the following places:

  • In the Configure page of the Gateway under OPC-UA Server > Devices
  • In the Status page of the Gateway under Overview > click the Devices box
  • In the Status page of the Gateway under Connections > Devices
  • In the Status page of the Gateway under Connections > OPC Connections

Allen Bradley Connection Paths Explained

All of the Allen-Bradley drivers have a Connection Path property that is used when the device uses a special Ethernet card (instead of having an Ethernet connection built in) or if you are using another device to act as a bridge. That is, connections to ControlLogix, CompactLogix, PLC-5, MicroLogix and SLC Allen-Bradley processors bridged through a ControlLogix Gateway require a connection path. The connection path is unique to your setup and is dependent on what modules the connection is being routed through. With there being nearly an endless number of ways to route your connection from device to device it is impossible to give an example of every possible connection path, but in general there is a pattern to how the connection path is specified.

The following is a basic outline for figuring out your connection path. For more specific information on individual device types, see the individual connection pages.

Follow the Path

A connection path is exactly what it sounds like. It is a path that when followed will lead a processor residing in a numbered slot of a chassis somewhere on site. You merely have to follow the path and build the connection path as you go. The first connection point between Ignition and the device is a ControlLogix Ethernet module such as an ENET, ENBT or EN2T module. The slot number of this module doesn't matter and there is no need to specify it in the connection path. The first entry in any connection path will be a 1, which specifies moving to the back plane. You then specify the slot of the module you wish to move to, followed by the port or channel of that module that you wish to exit through. Finally you specify the address of your entry point to the next module and the process starts all over again. This process may sound complicated at first but after some practice it will get easier.

Connection Path Steps

  1. Move to the backplane.
  2. Specify the slot number of the module you are moving to.
  3. Specify the exit port or channel.
  4. Specify address of entry point (DH+ Station Number/ControlNet Address/IP Address of Ethernet module).
  5. Move to the backplane.
  6. Specify processor slot number OR the slot number of the module you wish to exit through.

Connection Path Entries for Different Module Types

How you specify your exit point from a module differs depending on which module type you are using. You can only move in two directions once you are "in" a module: out to the backplane or out through the module port/channel. Ethernet modules have Ethernet ports and an IP address; ControlNet modules have ControlNet Ports and ControlNet addresses; DHRIO modules have channels and station numbers. Below is a list of different kinds of modules and what numbers you specify in the connection path when you are exiting or entering those modules. When in a module, an entry of 1 will always take you to the backplane.

1 = Backplane
2 = Ethernet Port
IP Address

1 = Backplane
2 = ControlNet Port
ControlNet Address

1 = Backplane
2 = DH+ Channel A
3 = DH+ Channel B
DH+ Station Number (an octal value between 0-77)

You use these numbers to specify how to move out of the module, then you specify where you are moving to by either specifying the DH+ station number, ControlNet address, or the IP address of another Ethernet module. Your connection path will always be an even number of entries due to the fact that you always move in two steps: out of a module and then in to another module. So if your connection path ends up with an odd number of entries you have missed a step somewhere and you'll have to go back and trace the path again.