NI Robotics Hardware Setup Wizard and LabVIEW Robotics Starter Kit Frequently Asked Questions (FAQ)

Publish Date: Jul 29, 2011 | 1 Ratings | 3.00 out of 5 |  PDF

Overview

The NI Robotics Hardware Setup Wizard allows you to configure CompactRIO and Single-Board RIO embedded hardware devices by completing a series of steps in the wizard.

The LabVIEW Robotics Starter Kit is a hardware and software package that allows you to program and control a Single-Board RIO-based autonomous robot. You can use the Hardware Setup Wizard to configure and test the Robotics Starter Kit.

This FAQ provides guidance on how to get started with the wizard and Starter Kit and provides troubleshooting techniques for both.

Table of Contents

  1. National Instruments Robotics Hardware Setup Wizard
  2. LabVIEW Robotics Starter Kit
  3. Related Links

1. National Instruments Robotics Hardware Setup Wizard

The Robotics Hardware Setup Wizard allows you to quickly configure all NI CompactRIO and Single-Board RIO products by:

  • Detecting devices on the network
  • Assigning IP addresses
  • Installing LabVIEW and RIO software on the device
  • Testing basic functionality

If you purchased the Robotics Starter Kit, this wizard provides step-by-step instructions for setting up and testing the hardware in the starter kit package. Refer to the LabVIEW Robotics Starter Kit section for more information about using the Hardware Setup Wizard with the Robotics Starter Kit.

How do I launch the Robotics Hardware Setup Wizard?

The Robotics Hardware Setup Wizard launches automatically when you restart your computer after you install the software on the LabVIEW Robotics Starter Kit or LabVIEW Robotics Bundle DVDs. If you purchased different media or you want to launch the Hardware Setup Wizard later, select Start»All Programs»National Instruments Robotics Hardware Setup, or click the Hardware Setup Wizard link on the Getting Started page of the Getting Started window in LabVIEW to launch the Hardware Setup Wizard.

The Hardware Setup Wizard detected multiple targets. Which target is mine?

If multiple CompactRIO or Single-Board RIO targets are connected to the same subnet as the host computer, the Hardware Setup Wizard returns the model type and serial number of each available target on the Detecting Hardware page. Make sure you select the correct target by matching the serial number in the Hardware Setup Wizard with the serial number on the barcode label of the target. 

Note  The position of the barcode label varies by hardware target. On CompactRIO products, refer to the barcode label on the controller instead of the label on the chassis. You might need to remove the controller from the chassis to expose the label on the controller.

Why can't the Hardware Setup Wizard detect the target I want to use?

If the Hardware Setup Wizard cannot detect the target you want to use, first click the Troubleshoot button for a list of conditions that might prevent detection. The following solutions address common issues that prevent the wizard from detecting the target you want to use:

  • Make sure you correctly identified your target on the Target Type page of the wizard.
  • Make sure you connect the Ethernet cable to the hardware target before you power on the device. If you powered on the device before you connected the Ethernet cable, reset the target.

I can detect the target, but am unable to install any software on it.  Why is this?

This can happen if the computer that you are using to detect your starter kit (or other target) is configured to have a static IP Address.  You will be able to detect the device but software installations will fail.  The solution is to configure your computer to DHCP (automatically assign an IP address).  Then you will be able to download software to the target.

What software does the Hardware Setup Wizard install on targets?

The Hardware Setup Wizard installs the following components on CompactRIO and Single-Board RIO targets you configure:

Note When this wizard runs, it also erases any existing software on targets.

  • LabVIEW Real-Time Module
  • Language Support for LabVIEW RT
  • NI-RIO
  • Network Variable Engine
  • Variable Client Support for LabVIEW RT
  • NI-VISA
  • NI-VISA Server
  • VxWorks Floating-point support

If you configure a CompactRIO target with the Hardware Setup Wizard, the wizard also installs the following components:

  • NI Scan Engine
  • NI-RIO IO Scan
  • NI-RIO IO Scan Common
  • Deployment Framework Common

Note  The Hardware Setup Wizard installs the most recent version of each component that exists on the host computer.

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2. LabVIEW Robotics Starter Kit

The LabVIEW Robotics Starter Kit is a hardware and software package that allows you to program and control a Single-Board RIO-based autonomous robot. You can use the Hardware Setup Wizard to configure and test the Starter Kit hardware. Refer to the Robotics Starter Kit page (linked below) for more information about the Starter Kit.

How do I protect myself from injury and avoid damaging the robot hardware?

The Robotics Starter Kit contains hardware that requires special caution when you unpack, handle, and operate it. Refer to the LabVIEW Robotics Starter Kit Safety Guide for important information about protecting yourself from injury and protecting the Starter Kit hardware from damage.

Access the LabVIEW Robotics Starter Kit Safety Guide by navigating to the labview\readme directory and opening StarterKit_Safety_Guide.pdf. You must have Adobe Reader 6.0.1 or later installed to view or search the PDF versions of the manual.

How do I set up the Starter Kit robot?

Refer to the foldout document included with the Robotics Starter Kit, which includes illustrations and instructions for setting up the Starter Kit robot. You also can refer to the Getting Started Guide for the Robotics Prototyping Kit (linked below) for a video tutorial and detailed procedure for setting up the Starter Kit robot. You use the Hardware Setup Wizard to configure the Starter Kit hardware. 

Contact National Instruments technical support if you encounter issues you cannot resolve when you set up and test the robot.

How do I know if the robot battery is low on power?

If the battery is low, the power LED might flash or not light up, the ethernet link and activity lights will blink periodically in unison and the sensor motor might move unpredictably. Also, if the MOTORS switch is on, the drive motors might turn at slower than normal speeds. Before you set up the Starter Kit robot, use the provided battery charger to charge the robot battery. 

How do I run the Starter Kit robot?

When you exit the Hardware Setup Wizard with a checkmark in the Create a new robotics project in LabVIEW checkbox, LabVIEW launches and the Robotics Project Wizard displays. Use the default settings on each page of Robotics Project Wizard to create an application the Starter Kit robot runs.

When you complete the Robotics Project Wizard, LabVIEW displays the LabVIEW project that contains program files for the Starter Kit robot and opens Starter Kit x.0 Roaming.vi, which demonstrates how to control the robot. Follow the instructions on the front panel of the VI to deploy an application that controls the robot to the Starter Kit hardware.

What else can I do with the Starter Kit?

Refer to the LabVIEW Robotics Starter Kit topic of the LabVIEW Help (linked below) for information about programming the Starter Kit robot, including how to simulate the robot.

Refer to the LabVIEW Robotics Code Exchange (linked below) to download and share example programs for the Starter Kit. Refer to the NI Robotics Starter Kit: List of Parts (linked below), for a list of Starter Kit robot components and information about how to buy additional parts.

Use the NI Example Finder, available by selecting Help»Find Examples from LabVIEW, to browse or search for example VIs that demonstrate robotics concepts, such as simulation, path planning and navigation, and kinematics. You can modify an example VI to fit an application, or you can copy and paste from one or more example VIs into a VI that you create.

How do I purchase fully licensed LabVIEW Robotics software?

After the evaluation period for the software on the Robotics Starter Kit DVD ends, you can purchase the LabVIEW Robotics Bundle, which gives you access to the LabVIEW Robotics Module and many other products in the LabVIEW platform, including the products in the Robotics Starter Kit. Refer to the LabVIEW Robotics Bundle page (linked below) for information about purchasing this product.

If you are part of an academic institution with an NI Academic Site License, you can activate the LabVIEW Robotics software using your Academic Site License key. Contact the software administrator at your institution for information about accessing NI software.

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3. Related Links

LabVIEW Robotics Starter Kit
Developer Zone: Getting Started Guide for the Robotics Prototyping Kit
LabVIEW 2011 Robotics Module Help: LabVIEW Robotics Starter Kit
LabVIEW Robotics Code Exchange
Developer Zone: NI Robotics Starter Kit: List of Parts
LabVIEW Robotics Bundle
Robotics Resources

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