Archived: Lookout Driver Objects - Custom INI File Settings

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NI Lookout and the Industrial Automation OPC Servers (also known as Lookout Protocol Drivers) have numerous drivers for PLCs and other devices. These drivers are configured in Lookout or the IA OPC Servers software by choosing Object»Create or Object»Modify. Most of the options necessary to use these drivers are available through the menu options; however, other driver settings can be made through .ini file settings. These settings are typically for debugging purposes or for advanced uses. This article describes the possible .ini file settings for each driver.

Please Note: NI does not recommend applying these INI settings for any driver. These settings should only be used if your device requires these settings. Do not use these settings if your driver operates properly without these configurations. Carefully review these INI settings and test the operation of the device before applying them permanently.



General Rules for Applying object.ini Settings For Driver Objects

Most drivers follow some general rules for object.ini settings.
  • Filename: Normal driver object configuration is stored either internally or in an object.ini file. If the normal configuration does not create an object.ini file, it is optional. If you have an object.ini file, make sure that you distribute it with your application.
  • Filelocation: When the object.ini file is used, it should be located in the same directory as the object.cbx file. Usually, that's the Lookout directory.
  • Sectionname: In the object.ini file you specify the object parameters (ini key values) either globally for all objects in an ini section called [all], or specifically for an object with [ObjectName] as you named it in Lookout or IA OPC Servers (such as [Modbus1], as shown in the Modbus.ini File Settings Example below).
  • Keyname: The object parameter is defined by its keyname and its value. The value could be numeric, string, or Boolean. Most drivers use either numeric or string parameters.
  • Apply: Whenever you change the object.ini file manually, you must restart Lookout or IA OPC Servers to apply the new settings for the driver object.

General Description of Some object.ini Settings For Some Drivers

Some drivers have unique object parameters. Here is a list:

UpdateOutputs specifies how many poll requests pass before the driver rewrites all outputs to the device. For example, if UpdateOuptuts equals 10, then every tenth time the Modbus object receives a poll request, it writes all output values to the device. This ensures that the device is synchronized with Lookout. The default value is 100.

RefreshOutputs specifies whether or not the driver regularly rewrites all outputs every UpdateOuptuts poll requests. If RefreshOuptuts is equal to 1 (the default value), the driver output rewrite function is turned on. If RefreshOuptuts is equal to 0 (zero), the driver output rewrite function is turned off; no rewriting of output values occurs except when they change.
Note: Most driver objects always write all outputs whenever they first start, and whenever they recover from a communication failure.

DiagnosticFile or DiagnosticPath specifies a filename (including full path) or just the path to a file for a logfile of a non-serial port communication (for example, Ethernet) between Lookout and the device for troubleshooting. For example, DiagnosticPath=c:\temp\diag.txt. Refer to the table below for more details about each object.

Modbus.ini File Settings Example

An example modbus.ini file is shown here:



In this example, all Modbus objects except Modbus1 and Modbus5 update all their outputs every 200 polls. Modbus5 updates its outputs every 10 polls. Modbus1 doesn't update its outputs unless an output changes. Also, all Modbus objects except Modbus5 use the RTU protocol. Modbus5 always uses the ASCII protocol.

Table of Lookout Driver Object .ini Files

Obejectname (.cbx)Filename (.ini)SectionnameKeyname [=default value]Description
allbrad.cbxallbrad.ini[PLC2]UnprotectedWrite=To disable an STS error reported by the Allen Bradley PLC when trying to write to protected registers on the PLC. It allows writing to protected registers. For example:
Unprotected Write=yes
 allbrad.ini[KT]TranslateLogical Address=Converts logical address to physical (See DF1 protocol specification; Chapter: PLC-2 physical Addressing).  For example:
TranslateLogical Address=yes
daniel.cbxdaniel.ini[all]/[objname]UpdateOutputs=100Sets the amount of polls to skip an output update.
 daniel.ini[all]/[objname]RefreshOutputs=1Sets to refresh all outputs every UpdateOutput polls.
 daniel.ini[all]/[objname]SkipImmediatePoll=0Sets to poll immediately upon getting a connection.
 daniel.ini[all]/[objname]ConfirmPoll=0Sets to poll immediately to confirm writes.
 daniel.ini[all]/[objname]SkipPollBefore Write=0Sets to skip a read poll before write (could be TRUE, in case of ConfirmPoll TRUE).
 daniel.ini[All]MaxChannels=8Sets max number of paths that can be open.
devnet.cbxdevnet.ini[all]StartupDelay=10Number of seconds to delay before first poll to device; default is 10 secs. For example:
fpoint.cbxfpoint.ini[objname]FilterChAlarms=0Filters several alarms coming from the FieldPoint driver:
FP module - channel status - Error message
FP-AI-1xx - 1 - Out of range
FP-AO-200 - 1 - Open Current Loop
FP-AO-210 - 1 - Overcurrent Protection
FP-DO-410 - 1 - Current Limited
FP-TC-120 - 1 - Out of Range
FP-RTD-122 - 1 - Out of Range
FP-CTR-500 - 1 - Overflow since Last Read
For example:
ge.cbxge.ini[ge]/[objname]OkToWriteUnchanged Values=0Specifies to perform block writes. For example:
OkToWrite Unchanged Values=1
hitachie.cbx1hitachie.ini[ethernet]DiagnosticPath=Creates a diagnostic file for Ethernet communication. For example:
DiagnosticPath= c:\temp\ hitachiediag.txt
modbus.cbxmodbus.ini[ethernet]DiagnosticPath=Creates a diagnostic file for Ethernet communication. For example:
DiagnosticPath= c:\temp\ modbusdiag.txt
 modbus.ini[all]/[objname]UpdateOutputs=100Sets the amount of polls to skip an output update.
 modbus.ini[all]/[objname]RefreshOutputs=1Sets to refresh all outputs every UpdateOutput polls.
 modbus.ini[all]/[objname]SkipImmediatePoll=0Sets to poll immediately upon getting a connection.
 modbus.ini[all]/[objname]AlwaysWrite=0Sets to always write redundant writes.
 modbus.ini[all]/[objname]OptimizeWrite=0Sets to write Coils/Register optimized.
 modbus.ini[all]/[objname]Protocol=RTUSets protocol mode; RTU or ASCII. For example:
 modbus.ini[All]MaxChannels=8Sets max number of paths that can be open.
mtsbshi.cbxmtsbshi.ini[all]/[objname]UpdateOutputs=100Sets the amount of polls to skip an output update.
 mtsbshi.ini[all]/[objname]RefreshOutputs=1Sets to refresh all outputs every UpdateOutput polls.
nif.cbx2lookout.ini[Fieldbus]AlarmPriority=0Alarm priority for Fieldbus objects. (default = 0)
optohost.cbxoptohost.ini[Diagnostics]TransactionFile=Creates a diagnostic file for Ethernet communication.
optomist.cbxoptomist.ini[all]/[objname]UpdateWrites=0Sets to refresh all outputs every 100 polls.
s5as511.cbx2lookout.ini[S5-AS511]Diagnostics=0Turns on diagnostic recording functions in S5-AS511 driver. When activated, this option logs diagnostic information to the s5as511.dai file in the Lookout directory.
=0 diagnostics are off (default)
=1 diagnostics are on
s7_hmi.cbx2s7_hmi.ini[COMx] x=1..MPIBaud=AutoSpecifies the speed at which the MPI Network is operating. These selections are possible. "187.5K", "Auto". For example:
 s7_hmi.ini[COMx] x=1..HighestMPI=31The highest possible MPI address for any device on the network. The range for this setting is from 0 to 126; the default is 31.
 s7_hmi.ini[COMx] x=1..PanelMPI=The MPI address assigned to the hardware adapter that is being used to talk to the network. The range for this setting is from 0 to the HighestMPI setting.
siemens.cbxsiemens.ini[objname]InitTimeout=2Sets the time that the application association will lock out other block's calls to funcs like tf_receive and tf_send; 1..10 seconds. For example:
sixnet.cbx2lookout.ini[Sixnet]IOMAPAlarm Priority=5Priority of the "Unable to load Sixnet IOMAP library: iobase32.dll" alarm in Sixnet. (default = 5)
 lookout.ini ProjectAlarm Priority=5Priority of the "No Sixnet configuration currently loaded" alarm in Sixnet. (default = 5)
squared.cbxsquared.ini[all]Bit1AddressingSets bit addressing to 1-16 instead of 0-15. For example:
 squared.ini[ethernet]DiagnosticFile=Creates a diagnostic file for Ethernet communication. For example:
DiagnosticFile= c:\temp\ squareddiag.txt
tesco.cbxtesco.ini[Diagnostics]DiagnosticFile=Creates a diagnostic file for Tesco communication.
 tesco.ini[Diagnostics]Setpoint=0Turns on Setpoint logs for DiagnosticFile.
 tesco.ini[Diagnostics]GeneralComm=0Turns on GeneralComm logs for DiagnosticFile.
 tesco.ini[All]/[objname]SPDeviation=0A deviation for setpoint writes.
tiway.cbxlookout.ini[Tiway]DiagnosticFile=Creates a diagnostic file for Tiway communication. For example:
DiagnosticFile= c:\temp\ tiwaydiag.txt
 lookout.ini2[Tiway]/[objname]UpdateOutputs=100Sets to refresh all outputs every UpdateOutputs polls (=0 disables to refresh all outputs).
 lookout.ini[objname]ConfirmPoll=0Sets to do a confirm poll, in addition it will skip doing the poll before the write.
 tiway.ini[PCAcardx] x=1..4BaseAddress=Sets base address for the cards can be set anywhere from 0x8000 to 0xFF00 (DOS area: 0xA000..0xEF00)
NOTE: BaseAddress and Irq are not required to be set in .ini because the driver searches automatically for it. However, if you set it in the .ini, the object uses those settings. It assumes that PCAcard1 has the lowest base address and so on.
 tiway.ini[PCAcardx] x=1..4Irq=Sets IRQ for the PC Adapter cards and can be anywhere from 1..15 (0=No IRQ).
NOTE: BaseAddress and Irq are not required to be set in .ini because the driver searches automatically for it. However, if you set it in the .ini, the object uses those settings.
 tiway.ini3[SFx] x=1..macro-stringConfigure Store and forward macros into Tiway structure (See SIEMENS TIWAY Host Adapter Card Manual). For example:
<C/V> <source-offset> <count> <msec> <dest-block> <dest-offset>
 tiway.ini3[UHA1COMx] x=1..
[PCAcardx] x=1..
Optionxx=0xFFFFRead Host Adapter command 30 (configure network manager) optional settings.
Network manager configuration options ( 00 - 0E (00 unused)): xx=01..0E
(See SIEMENS TIWAY Host Adapter Card Manual)
vmax.cbxvmax.ini[ethernet]DiagnosticPath=Creates a diagnostic file for Ethernet communication. For example:
DiagnosticPath= c:\temp\ vmaxdiag.txt

Lookout driver objects with .ini settings set through Object>>Create or Object>>Modify in the software:
allbrad.cbx, fpoint.cbx, profidb.cbx, profil2.cbx, reliance.cbx, squared.cbx

Lookout driver objects without .ini settings:
advan.cbx, applicom.cbx, aquatrol.cbx, cutham.cbx, deltatau.cbx, dnp.cbx, fatek.cbx, fisher.cbx, hitachi.cbx, idec.cbx, ipascii.cbx, misucom.cbx, nif.cbx, omni.cbx, omron.cbx, optomux.cbx, pducer.cbx, philips.cbx, rck.cbx, scandata.cbx, simatics5.cbx (S5_3965), toshiba.cbx, wizdom.cbx

Table of Other Object .ini Files


Object name (.cbx)File name (.ini)Section nameKeyname [=default value]Description
animator.cbxlookout .ini[Custom Colors]0= … 15= …Stores up to 16 custom colors for the Animator object. For example:
[Custom Colors]
hyper.cbxlookout .ini[System]SkipTrend Warning=0Skips the warning dialog of the HyperTrend object when you add traces to it that the trace has to be enabled for logging.
 hyper .ini[HyperTrend]MaxScrollRate =330Sets the max scroll rate from the .ini file (in milliseconds per pixel). Default is 0.33 s per ScrollPixels.
 hyper .ini[HyperTrend]ScrollPixels=8Sets the max number of pixels to scroll at a time (this affects the scroll rate also).
 hyper .ini[objname]ForceAsynch=0Sets to force the synchronous traces (discretes) to be drawn asynchronously (interpolated).
pager.cbxpager .ini[objname]DisableLog OffAck Check=01: Sets to disable verification of the log off ack.
pot.cbx2lookout .ini[Pots]/[objname]SnapDelay=2Sets snap delay setting for Pots (1..4200000 seconds).
 lookout .ini[Pots]Mouse ButtonRepeat=11: User holds down the mouse button and the incr, decr buttons will make the Pot change values several times.
0: Can be used to disable this default behavior.
recipe.cbx2lookout .ini[Recipe]objname. alarmpriority=8Alarm priority used by a Recipe object (default = 8). For example:
Recipe1. alarmpriority=4
sheet.cbx2lookout .ini[DataPath]objname=Full path name for an individual spreadsheet (default is path to the Lookout data directory).
table.cbx2lookout .ini[LocalTable] /[objname]Delay=500Periodically post a DDE table with this frequency (measured in ms). (default = 500)
 lookout .ini[LocalTable] /[objname]EchoCursor =10: only echo a cursor value if the cell the cursor is pointing to does not have a connection to it.
1: no echoes (default)
 lookout .ini[LocalTable] /[objname]PokeAllCells =0Sets to poke all cells.
This setting exists to work around a possible bug in DDE. If in CF_TEXT mode (must be to work with Excel), you need to be sending the whole table in each DDE message. But Lookout does not, so this function pokes every cell instead of just the one that changed. PokeAllCells gets called instead of PokeCell if you have the .ini setting PokeAllCells=1.
for all old 3.8 .cbxlookout .ini[System]ShowObsolete =1Shows obsolete .cbx file in the Object Explorer (for example, nidaq.cbx and other 3.8 objects).
Note: NI recommends that you no longer use the old Lookout 3.8 objects.

1 Lookout 5.1 or later is required for this setting.
2 You can find more information about this option in the Lookout Help.
3 Potentially not supported by third-party devices.

Related Links:
NI OPC Device Connectivity

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