# SCADA SYSTEMS

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Thread Starter

#### Marcio Francisco Dill Junges

Hello list,
Our company will start a process to change our SCADA software in about 4 plants (110 windows, 15000 I/O each). We actually use FactoryLink 6.0 but we are considering the possibility to use RSView, InTouch, FactoryLink(new version), or other. I am looking for papers, or studies comparing some SCADA softwares to help my evaluation in this problem. Any comment or suggestion will be appreciated.
Regards,
Marcio Junges
CVRD Group

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#### Luciano Vasconcelos

Dear, According to a study of softwares in the market made for Petrobras in November, iFix dynamics of intellution was in first place followed closely by intouch. Best regards, Luciano Vasconcelos - - - - Caro, Pela avaliação de softwares disponiveis no mercado feita pela petrobras em novembro , o iFix dynamics da intellution ficou em primeiro lugar acompanhado de perto pelo intouch. Abraços , Luciano Vasconcelos

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#### Alex Wilson

I was hoping there might be some replies to this as it would interest me too. However I can say that I have used InTouch on a number of projects and found it a very good, all round SCADA system. Its flexible because it can communicate with so many PLC platforms and has a wide range of scripting functions. The project I am currently working on has 300 windows and 14000 tags - there is a standard tag licence of 64k. I have never used RSview but people I work with who have, prefer Intouch. The only downside in my opinion is trending which, although better is still not very good. regards Alex

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#### Rob Bronson

I do not agree with the term SCADA being used to describe an HMI. A good SCADA host will have 1) a rich suite of applications for the applicable industry, 2) support many protocols/RTUs, 3) multiple circuit support, i.e., radio, telephone, ethernet 4) communication diagnostics, 5) remote configuration. Although HMIs like FactoryLink, InTouch, RSView, and iFIX can be enhanced through custom programming to have some of this capability, products like Metso's OASyS are true SCADA hosts. The emergence of products such as Standard Automations EFM/SCADA, AutoSol's AUCS 4.0, Bristols OpenBSI, Matrikon's Datamanager, Control Microsystem's SCADA Server and CTH's FLEXS are helping to close this gap. Rob Bronson

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#### Eric J. Feight

I have used WonderWare, Factory Link, Fix and RSView. My hands down favorite (especially if you are doing any database stuff…SQL…) is Cimplicity HMI.

I started using Intouch when it was first released. At that time it beat the pants off of Factorylink and any others on the market. They had great technical support and had the easiest to use graphical design interface that I had ever seen.

Like Intouch I started using Cimplicity HMI from it’s initial release. (Maybe I should be a beta tester…I seem to like pain) HMI was MUCH harder to learn. It also had a lot more power than Wonderware.

When you get right down to it, Wonderware, Cimplicity HMI, RSView, and the others are all basically the same thing: a graphical front end for a database. Here’s where the big difference comes in. Wonderware, even in Factory Suite, utilizes their own proprietary flat file database. It is a pain to do anything with except to populate Wonderware trends. To use all of your stored info outside Wonderware you still have to write scripts running HistData to generate a series of .csv files, then write code in Excel or a similar application to do something with the data. Cimplicity on the other hand, uses the Jet engine (ver 4 and earlier, I believe 5.0 now uses the MSD engine) to log to your choice of database formats or to ODBC data sources. It supports a true relational database model. If you’re doing anything with SQL, don’t even think twice, go with Cimplicity. You can log directly to a SQL database and you have full control over the format of the tables. As an interesting note you can buy Cimplicity SQL, which is Microsoft SQL 7.0, for about $100 less than you can get it from Microsoft…. Go figure. This ability is native to Cimplicity. Wonderware requires you to by their SQL module (~$1,000 I think) which only adds SQL extensions to their scripting language. You still have to write all the SQL code to do inserts and queries.

Speaking of scripting, HMI wins hands down. They use VB or VBA depending on who you get the propaganda from. If you’re comfortable with VB you’ll have no trouble with HMI scripting. I will warn you that their implementation of their object model still has me scratching my head sometimes. Wonderware uses their own scripting language. It looks a little like C, but doesn’t act much like it. It has a very limited instruction set. HMI also has a very powerful Event Editor for running scripts and other commands based on any conceivable event. HMI 5.0 now has “Object Classes”. It looks cool, but I haven’t had the chance to use it yet.

All is not roses. HMI has its downsides. If you have never used it, take a class before you attempt to even start developing an application. You can get a good 3rd party training CD from Neddam (Http://www.Neddam.com). If you can’t afford the time or \$ for a Cimplicity class, this is great! With Wonderware you can load and hack your way into developing simple applications. Also Trends are UGLY! Use TrendX if you want nice trends. Wonderware trends are a lot nicer looking and they have a good set of trend wizards to add functionality to their trends and make them look like you spent hundreds of hours on them (don’t tell my boss that).

From my standpoint, I use HMI whenever I get to choose. Now that I’m used to it, I can develop applications faster with HMI than with Wonderware. Intouch was my hands down favorite for many years. They were the industry leader, but for some reason they seem to be clinging to the past while others are keeping pace with more current software technologies.

I hope this info is useful and not too late. With luck, maybe it reinforces a wise decision on your part!

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#### Herbert

We used InTouch, Fix, WinCC, OAenterprise and others in the past. Now we are using automationX and we are very stisfied.
Herbert

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