Configuring the Database Connection
To setup a database connection in Ignition that you want to use with the SECS/GEM Module, go to the Config > Database > Connections section on the Gateway Webpage. The Database Connection name that is configured for this example is called SecsGem.
The SECS/GEM Module has been tested with MySQL, SQL and Oracle Servers. The SECS/GEM Demo project that you will upload later as part of this tutorial currently only supports MySQL. More information about configuring a database connection can be found in Connecting to Databases.
Configuring the Simulator
The SECS/GEM Module can directly interact with a piece of equipment, but we can also use the built-in simulator. This tutorial will assume you are using a simulator. To configure a simulator, refer to the example below.
For more information on configuring a simulator, refer to the SECS/GEM Simulator page.
If you do not have a SECS/GEM Module license installed, the simulators and equipment connections will cause communication to be stopped when the Gateway Trial Mode expires in 2 hours. Reset the trial mode on the Gateway Webpage to resume equipment and simulator communications. You can find more information about Trial Mode on the About the Trial Period page.
Creating an Equipment Connection
Once the simulator is configured, (or if there is an actual piece of equipment you wish to connect to), a connection to the Equipment must be made on the Config > SECS/GEM > Equipment section of the Gateway Webpage. To configure an equipment connection, refer to the example below.
When creating the equipment connection, most of the settings can be left as the default values for this tutorial. Use the following instructions to configure the equipment connection.
More information connecting to a tool can be found on the SECS/GEM Equipment Connections page.
Equipment Connection Status
The status of the Equipment Connection is shown in the Status column on the Equipment Connections webpage. When the status changes to "Communicating", the Equipment Connection successfully connected to the simulator.
Download and Restore the Demo Project
At this point, the bare minimum requirements to start utilizing the SECS/GEM module have been met. However, there is a free SECS/GEM Demo Project available from the Downloads page in the Extra's tab on the Inductive Automation website: https://inductiveautomation.com/downloads/extra-material. This demo project contains resouces to Ignition Exchange that can be very helpful. This demo project contains resources that allow you to start interacting with the SECS/GEM module. If you wish to install the demo project, first download the project, and then restore the "secsgemdemoproject.proj" by going Config > System > Project section of the Gateway Webpage. More information can be found on the Project Restore page for how to restore a project.
The demo project can be found here: SECS/GEM Demo Project
You can learn more about the Ignition Exchange, such as how to import the demo project, on the Ignition Exchange user manual page.
Using the SECS/GEM Demo Project
Once you restored the demo project, launch a client from the Gateway Webpage under the Home section to begin using the module. For more information, refer to the page on Launching Clients.
When the client is open, there will be three dropdown menus at the top left of the application. From the dropdowns, make the appropriate selections. If you followed the tutorial, the selections are shown below.
- Datasource: select the database connection (i.e., SecsGem)
- TablePrefix: select the TablePrefix (i.e., Sim_).
- Equipment: select the name of your Equipment Connection (i.e., Equip_MySim).
You should now be able to view and send SECS messages in the application. You can get started by clicking on the Establish Comm menu item under the Navigation tree, and then by clicking on the Send S1F13 button. You will see some messages populate the Search & Display table.
The Display Tabs allow you to see the detailed SECS messages associated with each request and reponse. There are five Display Tabs: Simple, Tree, Table, JSON, and Python. Select any request or response from the Search and Display table and toggle the Display Tabs to view the SECs messages in their respective formats.