The basic entity of an automotive network database is a cluster. A cluster describes a single network (for example, a collection of nodes on a CAN or FlexRay bus). Each cluster has certain properties that must be configured; these properties vary by protocol (CAN, FlexRay, LIN).
For a CAN cluster, the only required property is baud rate. For FlexRay, you must configure approximately 30 global network parameters for a cluster. For FlexRay clusters, the NI-XNET Database Editor provides an easy edit mode that enables you to configure the most important properties, which the editor then uses to calculate the remaining parameters. The easy edit mode is usually the preferred choice. However, if you have an existing database, you can use the expert mode to configure the full set of parameters.
A typical database contains a single cluster. CANdb, NI-CAN, and LIN protocols support only one cluster (unnamed) per database.
FIBEX supports any number of clusters in a database; each cluster has a unique name. You could, for example, describe all the networks of a vehicle in a single database.