RE: Flexy - OPC UA

opc-ua

#1

Hi Wayne,

I apologize for my slow response. My travel and project schedule has been crazy lately. I have not been able to look into the issues that you have brought to my attention. I have a heavy travel schedule starting up again, so I am CC’ing our Tech Support team so they can start digging into it.

I do know that there are some improvements in the OPC-UA interface pending in the next firmware release of the Flexy. I don’t know the detailed release schedule for this firmware, but it should be out later this year. Maybe these updates will resolve some of these issues.

Best regards

Trevor Lang
Field Applications Engineer

HMS Industrial Networks Inc
35 E Wacker Dr Suite 1700
Chicago IL 60601 USA

Email: Trevor.Lang@hms-networks.commailto:Trevor.Lang@hms-networks.com
Mobile:

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#4

Thanks Trevor,

I think I may have resolved the security issue as well. I did not see in the UA Server simulator that the security policy was set to sign+sign&encrypt, where it should have just been sign&encrypt. Probably why the security policy was failing.

Now that the OPC UA Client it working on my end, I do have one additional application question for our gateway. The purpose of this is to read data from an OPC UA Server using the Flexy 205, and then pass that data along to a ControlLogix CPU using EtherNet/IP, since the ControlLogix cannot act as an OPC UA Client.

Since I need to create an OPC UA topic and an ABLOGIX topic in the Flexy 205, does it require me to create two tags in the Flexy 205 for each data point (one tag for the OPC UA topic and a separate tag for the ABLOGIX topic)? Then I have to use scripting to set one tag equal to the other? That’s basically what I did, and it works. But just want to know if there is an easier way to do that.

Thanks,
Wayne


Hi Wayne,

I apologize for my slow response. My travel and project schedule has been crazy lately. I have not been able to look into the issues that you have brought to my attention. I have a heavy travel schedule starting up again, so I am CC’ing our Tech Support team so they can start digging into it.

I do know that there are some improvements in the OPC-UA interface pending in the next firmware release of the Flexy. I don’t know the detailed release schedule for this firmware, but it should be out later this year. Maybe these updates will resolve some of these issues.

Best regards

Trevor Lang
Field Applications Engineer

HMS Industrial Networks Inc
35 E Wacker Dr Suite 1700
Chicago IL 60601 USA


Hey Trevor,

I was able to get the Flexy 205 to communicate to two different OPC UA servers simultaneously this morning, and read data. I tried a different OPC UA Simulator (UA Server from United Automation). I was able to make a connection to that UA Server. To date, I have not been able to connect to the ProSys OPC UA server simulator, not sure what the issue is.

I was able to swap certificates, and trust them both in the Flexy and in the UA Server. But the Flexy will only see the tag structure if the security policy is set to none, even though the other security policies were enabled on the UA Server.

[cid:image003.png@01D51D24.328CBCD0]

When I set the security to anything other than none, I get the following:

[cid:image001.png@01D51D24.54460200]

Thanks,
Wayne


Hey Trevor,

Still have not figured out how to get the Flexy 205 OPC UA Client to connect to the OPC UA Server simulator. But as a test, I downloaded an OPC UA Client simulator from the same company, ProSys OPC, and I was able (with ease) to connect the OPC Client to the Flexy 205 and read/write tag data in the Flexy.

So that’s an encouraging sign.

I am running the latest firmware in the Flexy, 13.2s1.

One question I have is do I need to have OPC UA Server enabled when acting as a client? I do have it enabled now.

I’m also a little confused by the endpoints for the OPC UA Server simulator. Is the Flexy 205 the endpoint for the server simulator?

Thanks,
Wayne


Thanks Howard,

Trevor, to give you some additional details.

We wanted to test and demonstrate using the Flexy 205 as a OPC UA Client to read data from an OPC UA Server, then send that data to a ControlLogix via EtherNet/IP.

I found that free ProSys OPC Server simulator and have it running on my laptop.

I’ve tried to configure the Flexy 205 to be an OPC UA Client and pull that data from my laptop, but it does not establish a connection.

Flexy IP address is 10.0.0.111, and my laptop is 10.0.0.99. I’ve messed around with the port setting in the OPC Server simulator (they used 53530 by default), but that did not seem to do anything.

Been using opc.tcp://10.0.0.99:53530 in the topic configuration in the Flexy 205. But it always says that that the OPC Server is not found (or something to that effect) when I try to create a tag and link it to the OPC UA topic.

I’m not sure if I need to set up certificates in the Flexy 205. Any guidance would be helpful. Or if you guys use a different OPC UA simulator for your factory testing, I’d be fine with trying that as well.

Thanks,

Wayne


Trevor,

Please contact Wayne (office) when you have a chance. This partly has to deal with a project “two” server question from yesterday and the server below:

https://prosysopc.com/products/opc-ua-simulation-server/
Prosys OPC UA Simulation Server - Prosys OPChttps://prosysopc.com/products/opc-ua-simulation-server/
Multiplatform stand-alone OPC UA server that lets you configure your own simulation signals. Use Prosys OPC UA Simulation Server for testing OPC UA client applications and learning the technology.
prosysopc.com
Thanks!

Best regards,

Howard Greer

Area Sales Manager

South Central Americas

HMS Industrial Networks, Inc.

35 East Wacker Drive, Suite 1700

Chicago, Illinois 60601 USA

Locally Based in Austin, Texas

Email: hog@hms.semailto:hog@hms.se

Direct: +1 (512) 963-1326


Thanks Howard,

Also, can you ask about what OPC UA Server simulators the factory has used to test with the Flexy 205 OPC UA client?

I found a free one online, Prosys-OPC, that seems pretty cool – but I’ve been struggling to get the Flexy 205 to connect to it.

Thanks,
Wayne


#6

Hi Wayne,

Tags don’t need to be OPC UA Tags in the Flexy in order to be read by an OPC UA client, but in this case, since you are using the Flexy as the Client, you have to use the OPC UA IO Server and read in OPC UA Tags, like you are currently doing.

I looked at the possibility of using BASIC scripting to replace one of the IO Servers and Topics so you don’t need to copy them the way you’re doing it currently, but it doesn’t make it any easier. I think the way you have it is the best way for now.

Please let me know if you have any other questions.

Thanks,

Kyle


#7

Thanks Kyle – thanks for the support!

And I figured there was not way that the ControlLogix can browse the Flexy’s tags using EtherNet/IP… is that correct? The Flexy has to push the data to the ControlLogix.

Thanks,

Wayne


#8

That’s correct Wayne. The ControlLogix can’t browse the Flexy’s tags. The Flexy IO server has to read and write to the ControlLogix.

Kyle


#10

Kyle,

Another question on the Flexy 205.

Is there a way to read the status and send it to the ControlLogix (such as an internal tag) – such as when there is a loss of connection to the tag’s data source . The tags below are being read from the OPC UA server. The red exclamation points show up when the server is disconnected. Can we use that loss of connection status in a tag? We would want to send that server connection status to the PLC to indicate an issue.

Also, can the Flexy 205 support OPC DA connections?

Thanks,

Wayne


#11

Yes, you can create a status tag for a device (Status, IP Address) that will return the following values:

0 - Communication not initialized. Status UNKNOWN. If no Tag is polled on that device address, the communication status is unknown.

1 - Communication OK.

2 - Communication NOT OK.

OPC DA is just an old and limited version of OPC UA so the Flexy shouldn’t have a problem with that.

Kyle