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KEPServerEX v6 OPC and Communications Server

KEPServerEX is the industry’s leading communications platform that provides a single source of industrial automation data to all of your applications. The platform design allows users to connect, manage, monitor, and control diverse automation devices and software applications through one intuitive user interface.

KEPServerEX leverages OPC (the automation industry’s standard for interoperability) and IT-centric communication protocols (such as SNMP, ODBC, and web services) to provide users with a single source for industrial data. Designed around the four product pillars of Proven Interoperability, Centralized Communications, On-Demand Scalability, and Industrial Strength, KEPServerEX is developed and tested to meet our customers’ performance, reliability, and ease-of-use requirements.

The single, consistent interface of KEPServerEX allows you to truly maximize the promise of OPC. You can add multiple driver "plug-ins" all within a single OPC server without worrying about learning new communication protocols or spending time understanding new applications. The list of drivers includes PLC and device drivers, database and application specific drivers, and a user-configurable driver for serial and Ethernet data acquisition.

Kepware communications drivers are available individually as well as being bundled into suites delivering a greater level of value for vertical markets. Please review the Bundled offerings first, as they are collections of the most commonly needed drivers in a vertical market. Vertical Suites may be purchased in combination with individual drivers, and all drivers will be supported under a single KEPServerEX OPC Server and its various options.

Control Engineering Engineer's Choice Award
Software - Applications: 2010 - 2016
   

Features Include:
  • OPC Connection Security
  • Centralized Communications Platform
  • Unified Configuration
  • OPC Diagnostics
  • Communications Diagnostics
  • 11 Plug-in options
  • Cloud Interfaces
  • IT Interfaces
  • Exporters
  • Automatic Tag Generation
  • Multiple Tag Generation
  • Application Connectivity
  • Quick and Easy Configuration
ESI offers a page devoted specifically for Machine connectivity, presenting drivers for (GE) Fanuc Focas, Mitsubishi CNC Ethernet and MTConnect - link
 
 
   
What's New For KEPServerEX Version 6
Since KEPServerEX Version 5 first released in 2009, industrial connectivity has evolved into a critical layer in the solution stack—providing secure, reliable communications between the hardware layer and software application layer. The release of KEPServerEX Version 6 addresses the industry's need to produce and analyze greater volumes, variety, and velocity of data to supply a wider, more diverse set of client applications in a secure manner. With updates that enable remote configuration, support critical industrial automation markets in Asia and Europe, and simplify the user and licensing experience, KEPServerEX Version 6 provides the global connectivity, usability, and performance required by the enterprise.

Programmatic Changes via The Configuration API

The new REST-based API enables users to remotely apply programmatic changes to the KEPServerEX configuration via third-party client applications (including SCADA, HMI, IoT applications, and simple web applications). These changes include adding, editing, reading, and deleting objects (such as channels, devices, and tags) in the server. This feature is especially helpful for users with large and constantly-changing projects or companies who want to:

  • Programmatically build KEPServerEX project files

  • Protect the KEPServerEX project configuration by limiting modifications made by lower-level users

The Configuration API enables programmers to create simple webpages where users can identify the properties that change, and then programmatically create the channels, devices, and tags to the company standard. It also enables the use of templates to standardize creation and naming among different types of devices—ensuring consistency and increasing user efficiency.

KEPServerEX Version 6 features an updated user interface that streamlines project setup, deployment, and interaction for an improved user experience and product manageability. Its unified tree view, simplified property editor, and updated wizards improve accessibility and increase user productivity.

KEPServerEX Version 6 includes localized core features and top-tier drivers in Japanese and German to increase accessibility, productivity, and safety for Asian and European markets. This provides local customers and global multinationals the confidence that their technicians and engineers can configure, monitor, and troubleshoot KEPServerEX safely and efficiently. Language selection is available in an easily-accessible location, enabling users to change it at any time. All languages are installed by default.
The core OPC UA functionality available in KEPServerEX Version 6 enables users to meet today's performance and scalability requirements while seamlessly evolving into the Industrial IoT. Developing the technology in-house positions Kepware engineers to better support end users, with engineers' in-depth knowledge of the OPC UA standard enabling quicker resolution of customer issues. Kepware's native OPC UA functionality provides enhanced diagnostics and creates a solid foundation for the future support of additional capabilities within the OPC UA specification.
Integrating the Security Policies advanced plug-in into core server functionality enables all users to assign access permissions on individual objects based on user role. Formerly a standalone product, its integration into core server technology addresses customers' needs for security in today's complex industrial environments. These capabilities compliment users' defense-in-depth strategy by providing the control system communications layer the functionality and flexibility needed to meet site security requirements.
   
Product Features:
KEPServerEX provides critical technical features that are centralized around accessibility, aggregation, optimization, connectivity, security, and diagnostics. Expand the topics below to learn more about these features.
   
Accessibility:  
  • OPC is the leading standard for industrial automation connectivity. KEPServerEX supports the OPC Unified Architecture (OPC UA) specification and many of the OPC Classic specifications, including OPC Data Access (OPC DA), OPC Alarms and Events (OPC AE), and OPC Historical Data Access (OPC HDA).
  • Automation Interfaces: KEPServerEX has preferred access to leading automation software, including iFIX by GE Intelligent Platforms (NIO) and InTouch by Wonderware (SuiteLink/FastDDE). KEPServerEX also supports preferred access to Oracle MES and MOC solutions through their proprietary API.
  • IT Interfaces: KEPServerEX supports multiple interfaces for integration with IT applications, including ODBC for logging information to a database and SNMP for providing information to a Network Management System (NMS). With the advent of IoT and Big Data applications, KEPServerEX now includes the ability to communicate with Splunk software and cloud services via the Industrial Data Forwarder for Splunk.KEPServerEX runtime Process features are used to specify how the servers runtime process mode will operate and utilize PC resources. It is used to specify whether the server will be running as System Service or Interactive.

    KEPServerEX also allows you to set its own process priority giving the server priority access to resources.
  • Cloud Interfaces: With the IoT Gateway, KEPServerEX can seamlessly stream real-time industrial control data directly into Big Data and analytic software for Business Intelligence and Operational Excellence. Its customizable data format supports most MQTT and REST applications—enabling users to choose the vendors and communication methodologies right for their system.
  • Exporters: Some applications require information to be made available from a file or database. This information is typically exported at a predefined rate and includes both current and historical data. KEPServerEX has the ability to export historical Electronic Flow Measurement (EFM) data (via the EFM Exporter plug-in) or historical trend data (via supported drivers) to files and/or databases.
 
Aggregation:
  • Centralized Platform: KEPServerEX is a communications platform that can support connections to thousands of data sources and provide information to hundreds of applications. The platform design simplifies the configuration of the connected applications by providing a single point of entry to all information. KEPServerEX also enables troubleshooting and issue diagnosis, provides control to the access of information based on user roles, and the ability to restrict the frequency of communications over bandwidth-limited telemetry-based environments.
  • Unified Configuration: KEPServerEX provides a unified configuration for managing connectivity to any data source. Anything can be added, configured, or deleted while the server is on-line and operational. Users can configure projects manually using a step-by-step wizard or programmatically through the export and import of XML and CSV files.
  • Data Storage and Retention: KEPServerEX is capable of archiving the real-time data it collects to local storage. By leveraging the Local Historian plug-in, applications can access this historical data (via OPC HDA) for future analysis. KEPServerEX can also store information in any ODBC-compliant database using the DataLogger plug-in, which has a store-and-forward capability for when a database is unreachable or unable to process the information fast enough.
 
Optimization:
  • Data Conditioning and Reduction: In addition to providing raw values to connected applications, KEPServerEX can perform linear or square root scaling, perform basic arithmetic expressions, or apply deadband calculations on raw data and provide its aggregate. This provides minimal bandwidth and resource utilization by providing only the most critical updates.
  • Redundancy: KEPServerEX is used in critical applications where highly-reliable systems are required for maximum uptime. It includes the ability to define redundant network paths, primary and secondary data sources, and applicable failover criteria.
  • Load Balancing: In large networks that have many devices and applications requiring information, flexible control is necessary to allow for customized load-balancing of data collection and information flow. KEPServerEX provides tools to schedule the frequency of communications and throttle the demand across the network.
  • Communication: KEPServerEX optimizes communications with devices by aggregating identical requests from different applications whenever possible. Multiple demands on data can be batched together into the fewest requests possible. These optimizations are unique to each protocol, and are designed to reduce network overhead and device processing.
  • Machine to Machine Linking: In a typical industrial automation network, devices and controllers must communicate with one another even if they are not from the same manufacturer or do not support the same protocol. KEPServerEX provides the ability to establish links between data values in different data sources, allowing Machine-to- Machine (M2M) communications as close to the device as possible.
 
Connectivity:  
  • Driver Based Access: KEPServerEX offers the broadest range of drivers available, supporting devices across various verticals within the Industrial Automation Industry. While most drivers act as masters that initiate requests, there are many drivers that can emulate a device where communications are driven by a controller. KEPServerEX drivers also support a variety of wired and wireless network mediums for Ethernet, serial, and proprietary networks. Although most drivers connect directly with hardware devices, some are designed to connect with other applications—such as databases, custom software applications, or other OPC servers.
  • Telemetry Environments: Industrial automation equipment can be deployed in a dry and heated factory, but it can also be installed inside a vehicle, on a remote pipeline, or in a well or pump station. In these remote environments, there are often a variety of telemetry solutions in use like cellular, radio, or satellite modems. KEPServerEX supports these telemetry configurations and provides additional ways to optimize communications through virtual networks, timing parameters, device demotion, and by scheduling communications across devices.
  • Rapid Development: As automation networks have grown from ten controllers to thousands of controllers, tools that aid and accelerate deployment are critical to a solution’s success. KEPServerEX provides many tools that speed the deployment of new devices, including Automatic Tag Generation (ATG) and Device Discovery (when supported by the device and communication protocols). Users can also export, manipulate, and import an XML project file to programmatically define the configuration.
  • Simulation: As systems are configured, components must be implemented and tested before the entire system becomes available. KEPServerEX allows any data source to be placed into simulation mode prior to deployment. In addition, the Memory Based driver can be configured to create a range of static and dynamic data points. The Advanced Simulator driver can leverage a database and its contents to drive application-specific simulation data into connected applications.
  • Application Connectivity: KEPServerEX has been enhanced to provide the widest range of connectivity of any server product available. KEPServerEX supports the following client server technologies:
OPC Data Access Version 1.0a
OPC Data Access Version 2.0
OPC Data Access Version 2.05a
OPC Data Access Version 3.0
OPC Alarm and Events AE version 1.10
OPC Unified Architecture (UA) Version 1.01
FastDDE for Wonderware
SuiteLink for Wonderware
DDE Format CF_Text
DDE Format AdvancedDDE
NIO Interface for iFIX
   
Security:  
  • Configuration: Access to the KEPServerEX configuration can be restricted through the User Manager. This tool allows the administrator to define user groups and users with restricted access to certain project configuration tasks, and also provides the ability to disconnect client applications.
  • Runtime: There are various tools available within KEPServerEX to control user access to the server, data source, or data values. The Security Policies plug-in limits access based on OPC UA user credentials while supporting default handling for anonymous users (both OPC UA and other client interfaces). The ability to dynamically address information can be disabled, limiting user access to tags defined within the project. KEPServerEX supports a number of secure client standards including SNMP (v3 security), OPC UA, and OPC DA (DCOM security) to further restrict access to the server, as well as a number of secure device protocols to meet the requirements of DNP3, SNMP, and OPC UA data sources. Secure data tunnels can be configured by leveraging multiple KEPServerEX instances at remote endpoints to pass data through firewalls and meet authentication and encryption requirements across the Internet.
   
Diagnostics:  
  • OPC Diagnostics: OPC Diagnostics provide a real-time and historical view of OPC events between any OPC client and the server, including method calls made by the client or callbacks made by the server. The ability to view actual communications and responses is invaluable when troubleshooting client accessibility. The diagnostics tools within KEPServerEX greatly speed deployment and reduce downtime.
  • Communications Diagnostics: Communication Diagnostics provide real-time capturing of the protocol frames transferred between the server and any device, as well as indications on the driver's performance. All read and write operations can be viewed or tracked directly in an OPC client application using built-in diagnostics tags. This is useful when modifying key communication parameter settings (such as baud rate, parity, or Device IDs), because corrections are immediately visible.
  • Third Party Diagnostics: Diagnostics information can be viewed within KEPServerEX and by third-party applications. Diagnostics information is provided through system-defined tags and accessible to the same clients connecting to the data sources. KEPServerEX logs event information, which is accessible within the configuration tool or to any application that supports the OPC Alarms and Events specification.
   
Other Capabilities:  
  • Automatic Tag Generation: The promise of OPC is to make the customer's life easier. With that goal in mind Kepware has added a new feature that helps bring OPC technology closer to true Plug and Play operation. The Automatic Tag Database Generation feature of KEPServerEX, available on select OPC servers, allows you to configure all of the necessary tags for your device automatically at startup, or with the simple press of a button. OPC Tag browsing is one of the key features of OPC technology. To use this feature in most cases requires the user to manually enter all of the tags required for their application. While tedious, once complete the user had the benefit of being able to point and click from their OPC client applications to link with these tags. The Automatic Tag Database Generation feature of KEPServerEX eliminates that last tedious step for OPC users. For the drivers that support it, this feature makes OPC project setup a quick and painless operation.
  • OPC Quick Client: KEPServerEX includes an extensive OPC Quick Client application to aid in the development of your OPC applications. The Quick Client is a full-featured OPC client that supports all of the operations available in any OPC client application. Using the Quick Client you can access all of the data available in your server application including system, diagnostic, and user defined tags. The Quick Client allows you to read and write data, perform structured test suites, and test server performance. The Quick Client's comprehensive error reporting provides detailed feedback regarding any OPC errors returned by the server helping diagnose common OPC Client/Server issues.
  • Multiple Tag Generation: Have you ever worked on large HMI or SCADA projects that needed access to thousands of tags? Ever wish there was a quick and easy way to generate those tags without exporting and manipulating tag information within a .CSV file? KEPServerEX's Multiple Tag Generation tool allows for quick and easy project builds. The Multiple Tag Generation tool can be used with any of our 150 communication drivers. The Multiple Tag Generation Tool dynamically creates multiple tags using user-defined driver nomenclature. The tool allows a variety of address formats (such as ranges utilizing decimal, hexadecimal, and octal number systems). To avoid overlapping data, the Tag Generation Tool also has the ability to increment by a user-defined data type.
  • Ethernet Encapsulation is the enhanced ability of KEPServerEX serial drivers to communicate directly with terminal servers. As described in the previous section, we could have used the software supplied with the terminal server, but this would not have yielded the most optimal result in terms of performance or reliability. With this in mind, Kepware has incorporated the functions needed to directly connect to a serial device connected to an Ethernet based terminal server.
KepserverEX is THE communications solution that reliably connects your organizational infrastructure and secures one of your most valuable assets - INFORMATION

Why compromise with anything else?

   
Windows O/S Requirements: Minimum System Requirements:
  • Windows 8 and 10
  • Windows 7 Professional/Enterprise/Ultimate
  • Windows Server 2012 and 2012 R2
  • Windows Server 2008 R2
  • 2.0 GHz Processor
  • 1 GB installed RAM
  • 180 MB available hard disk space
  • Ethernet Card
  • Super VGA (800 x 600) or High resolution video
  • CD Rom or DVD Drive
   
Downloads and Resoucres  
Software Download - (Redirected) KEPServerEX OPC.NET Configuration Manual
KEPServerEX v6 Manual KEPServerEX Quick Client Manual
KepServerEX v5 Manual KEPServerEX OPC UA Configuration Manual
KEPServerEX Installation Guide KEPServerEX Kepware's Knowlege Base (redirected)
KEPServerEX Application Report Manual KEPServerEX Kepware's White Papers (redirected)
KEPServerEX Connection Sharing Manual KEPServerEX Kepware's Resource Library (redirected)
KEPServerEX License Utility Manual KepServerEX Server Bundles (Redirected)
KEPServerEX Media Level Redundancy Manual KepServerEX Options and Accessories (Redirected)
KEPServerEX Memory Based Manual Other Kepware Products (Redirected)
   
   
New to KepserverEX 6.0 Runtime:
Driver Updates / New Plug-ins
   
Pricing for Server Bundles, Options, Accessories and Other Kepware products are listed on each product page. Index page will provide access.

Quantity Discounts and Bundled Product Discounts Available - Contact ESI for more Information

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