Linux RSLogix Viewer


Thread Starter

Curt Wuollet

Hi all

Since I've apparently been too busy to keep up with all the Linux developments lately, or perhaps there's simply so much more happening these days, I thought I'd ask what may be a silly question.

Has anyone done an OSS RSLogix file viewer for Linux or even Windows? I want to do a document server for maintenance folks and RLL is one of the data types I'd like to serve up for viewing. I can capture printer output and convert to Open formats but that's rather tedious and would require a redo every time a file is changed. Or I could define a bogus printer shared with SAMBA and do the deed semi automatically. But, life would be easier if I could simply view the latest files with something called from the browser. A license for every PC in the plant is not a realistic option. I've found a viewer for AutoCad, RSLogix is the last hang up.





The Windows solution for this from Rockwell Automation is the RSLadder ActiveX controls provided with RSLinx Professional, 9355-WABENE. They're also included with RSView32, and available separately for offline use as
9324-RL0LDRENE (SLC500) and 9324-RL5LDRENE (PLC-5). Get details at

RSLadder enables ladder logic and documentation viewing for PLCs and SLCs, online or offline, in the Windows environment. I'm not aware of another product that does this, in or out of the Open Source world, but there is
nothing preventing such a product other than effort.

BTW, if your plant is reasonably stable, I would endorse the printer related solutions you have already thought of. Ladder viewers are most useful online during problem solving. Hardcopy printouts are used more commonly, and your solution is less expensive than either a ladder viewer or a hardcopy printout.

Hope this helps!

Larry Lawver
Rexel / Central Florida

Curt Wuollet

Hi Larry

Thanks, that's fairly helpful. I would expect getting dozens of seats of RSLinx Pro just for the RSLadder might be shot down fairly hard. I don't suppose site licenses are a fit for these tools. Since we are very lean on RSLogix licenses, I don't think I can solve it the RS way. I'm not quite ready to try to sell the printer solutions yet either. I need a better way. I'm fairly sure that people will expect more. They will want it to work like RSLogix on every seat. I may need to look at VNC to the existing licensed machines or something like that if I can figure out how to make that work. I won't have dozens of people working, but I will need a couple of people to be able to work from any location. Linux and X would make this a snap, simply use the workstatons as X terminals on the RSLogix box. It's going to be much harder with Windows.



Lynn at Alist

Actually, if you can print RSLogix to a Windows printer, then you can create a PDF of the program/docs. PDF viewers are available on Linux, MAC etc. Open source PDF 'writers' even exist.

And given issues of "revision" with complex tools like RSLogix (or Concept or Step7 or ...) suffer, having on-line documents in a simplier, vendor-neutral format seems a wise investment for the small effort to do.

- LynnL

Curt Wuollet

Hi Lynn

That is true enough where I may well do both, using VNC for "live" access and providing hard
copy through a print scheme. I'll hopefully
be using Linux for the server so I'll probably
use Ghostscript and ps2pdf rather than Adobe
distiller. But either way I can arrange to have
the files live on the more stable platform.
I'm going to set up VNC as soon as I get a go
ahead to see if RSLogix works OK with remote
access. I'm not sure how VNC will work as a
browser "helper", and how parameters would be



David Corking

Hi Curt,

Hope you don't mind my re-opening an old thread simply to observe that the windows port of ghostscript can act as a PDF writer in a very similar way to unix ghostscript.

I use it regularly. An open-source 'print redirector' to use ghostsript as a Windows printer is on the GNU Ghostscript website

(make sure you get as far as this paragraph in the manual


Curt Wuollet

Hi Dave

I don't mind at all! I'm still researching the project and RSLogix is still the project killer. Proprietary stuff takes all the fun out of being creative. I've got solutions for most types of data we use but, RSLogix files are useful only with RSLogix, which is only useful standalone. I may have to settle for just storing a filename and rung number and telling the user to walk the quarter mile to a licensed PC. And call Rockwell Software with their complaints. Elegance is so much easier with OSS.



Jeremy Pollard

Curt - you can export to a text file (library export) then use a 'recompiler' to view the ladder. Live data might be gathered using OPC or something to populate a data table of sorts associated with the rung.

Cheers from: Jeremy Pollard, CET The Crazy Canuckian!
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