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Changing/Configuring a New Channel in Mark VIe
How do I change the IO channel configuration in the MARK VIe control system?
By chiranjeevi on 26 April, 2017 - 10:20 am


Can u explain how to change/configure a new channel in MARK VIe control system? I have searched the manuals and no where i found the
steps? i have idea like as once i did it, after going to hardware tab and card and corresponding type of i/p like thermocouples, servo outputs, LVDTs, etc.
->creating/copying the variable name
->right click on card,parameters->download.

Does after downloading requires rebooting of IO pack?

Can u please elaborate? so that i can make a procedure and circulate in my department?

1 out of 1 members thought this post was helpful...


I don't have access at this writing to a Mark VIe to check any steps, but you are mostly correct. You have to create the "pin" to create the signal name (the convention is to use lower-case alpha characters for I/O signal names) in the 'Functions ' (I think that's what the section in the Tree pane of the ToolboxST window is called). That will then cause a Minor--or sometimes a Major--difference, the latter which will require a download and reboot of the control processor(s). (A Minor Difference requires a download to the control processor(s), but not a re-boot--if I recall correctly.)

Then you have to go to the Hardware tab, select the desired I/O card, and enable and/or configure the "channel" (your term), and then Download the parameters to the I/O Pack(s) of that card. That doesn't generally require a re-boot of the control processor(s) or the I/O pack.

If you want to display the value of an I/O signal on a CIMPLICITY display, you're going to have to add it to an EGD page. And sometimes that results in a Major Difference, other times only a Minor Difference. Both require a download, but only the Major Difference requires re-booting the control processor(s). And THEN you have to do a Put and then open the .hmb file(s) and do Get(s) and downloads to the HMI(s). (Here's where I have to "wing it" when I'm actually doing something like this--and where GE has done things differently with different revisions of ToolboxST and CIMPLICITY over the years--and have NOT EVER properly documented the differences.)

All of this IS described in the GE publications/manuals--but only the individual steps are described. There isn't a publication/manual I'm aware of which tells one how to accomplish anything that requires multiple steps--that would be MUCH too easy. No; one has to glean the required information from several GE publications--such as the System Guide, and the ToolboxST Guide for Mark VIe, and the HMI publication, etc.--to develop a procedure to accomplish what is desired.

Actually, I have seen on some of the newer HMIs a series of GE publications with something like "How to..." in the title--for some procedures like this. If I recall correctly, the GE publication number begins with something like GEIT- or GEHT- or something similar. Again, they don't put the title in the file name--only the publication number and revision character, so one has to spend a good deal of time opening multiple .pdf files to see what's in them and what the title is. (I rename the .pdf files to include the title to make them easier to find again--AND, I copy interesting and useful files to a Desktop folder to more easily find them again. Hint. Hint.) There are usually LOTS of GE publications, sometimes multiple copies in more than one location, on the GE Mark VIe HMIs, but they have to be manually found and searched to find any information in them. A good activity for a rainy day (which hasn't resulted in 125 VDC battery grounds...).

GE Speedtronic/Mark* publications/manuals are getting better--but they still have a LONG way to go to be really useful. Without indexes (indices to be grammatically correct) they are difficult to search--but most people use the Search feature of the .pdf file viewer to find words/terms, which is really powerful if you're using electronic.pdf files.

So, that's the gist of what has to happen. We didn't discuss how to use an input signal in the application code, or how to write to an output from the application code. That is best learned by finding a similar example in the existing application code and duplicating it as necessary to achieve the desired operation.

I'm loathe to attempt to write a procedure, because GE changes things subtly and doesn't document the changes, and too often I've had rude comments from people who tried years later to use a procedure and found it didn't work.

I will >>>VERY STRONGLY<<< recommend before beginning any procedure as involved as the above to MAKE A BACKUP, preferably of the entire hard disk. AND, to write down every step performed--and the result--so that should some problem occur you can try to understand what went wrong or explain to someone precisely what was done in what order if looking for help to recover/resolve a problem or problems.

All of that, is, of course, after writing a step-by-step procedure for oneself after gleaning the information required from the various GE publications and manuals. There are actually very few sites that attempt this without an experienced, knowledgeable person to either perform the procedure or assist with performing the procedure. VERY few. It's fraught with possible problems, and most sites don't begin by making back-ups....

I also do not recommend trying this on a production machine that is running, or even one that is not running but has to be re-started in a few hours, or even the next day. This is best done at the beginning of a maintenance outage that is going to last few days, at least, to allow sufficient time to recover from any issues. If the site has a Mark VIe "trainer" panel, that's even better (provided it hasn't been robbed of parts/cards to keep other Mark VIes running). And--again--only with proper back/ups.

That's as much as I am willing and able to do now. Hope this helps!


The GE "How to ...." publications are GHTs (the GE publication number begins with "GHT-").

And, pins and functions are Mark VI terms. It's Software and Variables in Mark VIe.

Ain't this stuff fuuunnn????!