Allen-bradely tags

We have a new client that has PLC running in the field. What is the easiest way to bring all those tags into ignition without connecting to plc.

I presume you mean you have a central Ignition server and you want to connect a remote site to it?

There are a number of ways, some of these might be:

We will be using an edge panel. But we would like to have the panel finished before we go to site. That way there is only one trip as these are some what remote.

MQTT with Sparkplug B (3.1.1) protocol. This is a very efficient means to get data across cellular, satellite, means of TCP/IP.

I think he’s looking for some kind of simulator so he can develop the project offline, before he gets to the site or ever has connectivity to it.

We don’t really have any solutions for this.

It might be possible to load the program into a SoftLogix and make a connection to that locally, if that’s even the same kind of PLC in use. The title just says it’s AB do we need more info. I’m not sure if the SoftLogix even works with our driver though…

It works! Downside is Softlogix is pretty much dead at v23. However the other option is to use RSEmulate in combination with RSLinx GATEWAY and the OPC Com module. I’ve used v32 Emulate with with Ignition 8 and OPC Com module to kick off a project before having a physical PLC.

I’ve connected a softlogix to Ignition before, I wish I recorded the steps though and any differences in tag addressing… I can’t remember unfortunately

Any idea what the differences are in tag addressing using RSEmulate/Linx compared with using the actual hardware?

Ask that customer to provide an export of that processor in “L5X” format (xml). Install my Ethernet/IP Class 1 Communications module and create a virtual PLC device (Host Device) with it. Import the L5X into the “Configuration” section of that virtual PLC device. There are only a handful of datatypes that won’t import, like MESSAGE tags. Even AOI types and tags import as long as they aren’t protected.

At this point, the tags and datatypes from the real PLC will be accessible as if you were using the Logix v21 driver, with (mostly) compatible OPC item syntax. Excluding the “internals” and some differences in string handling. Carry on with development. If you wish to emulate some of the PLC functionality for UI testing, you can write jython code in the virtual PLC–that code has access to the virtual PLC’s tags as jython variables. Call such testing code from a gateway timer event to emulate a “Periodic Task”.

When you are ready to deploy, delete or rename the virtual PLC device, and create the appropriate Logix v21 driver with that old name. Your tags and other OPC calls will now work with the real PLC.

If the few slight driver differences are a problem, do the above, but in a second Ignition Gateway. Make sure the virtual PLC is set to listen on that gateway’s local IP address. In the first gateway, use the Logix v21 driver and point it at the second gateway. The virtual PLC emulation includes external access using the standard Logix tag access protocol.

As long as someone else provides the processor file in L5X format, you will not need any Rockwell Software during development.


Add this device to the network MQTT Gateway - (

This device has a driver for Compact/Control logix and the Micro800 series Plcs all are tag based.

Just copy/paste/import the tags you want to be published/subscribed setup the “Sparkplug B” parameters such as QoS, topic, Group-ID, Edge-ID, Publishing time.

Then a few steps in the Ignition Gateway and you should be good to go. The G01 Gateway is around $390.00 USD “No Tag Limits”.

This is what I am using, for our remote oil & gas locations on our own cellular private network.

Just an Idea!

The problem with Emulate is that even v32 (latest as of this writing) does not yet support safety controllers, and also does not support controller firmware v31 and v32 yet. In the case of safety controllers, you can (with great pain) strip out all the safety stuff and change the controller to a non-safety version if it is v30 or earlier. This gives access to most of your tags for dev purposes. Given the lack of options available, I guess this is as good as any… for AB controllers anyway.

We have local racks and a server set up that we use for most dev work until we have to send that particular controller to site. Then we either set up an on-site hot spot (slow), Team Viewer, or get VPN access so I can continue to do all the work remotely.

But, sometimes the timing does not always work out, and offline development is a PITA.

I have installed your Ethernet/IP Class 1 Comm driver and went through the setup but the device does not show up in device tree in the tag browser. It does show up in the project browser as a virtual backplane. How can I move the tags to the folder in the tag browser?

Do you mean it doesn’t show up in the OPC browser? You may have to refresh that if it was already open in your designer when you configured your Ethernet/IP Host Device.

I did refresh with no luck. Here are a couple of screen shots.

The “N/A” status means something didn’t start up correctly, or you left a non-optional field blank in the settings page.

Screen shot of setup.

What IP address do I use for the Local Addresses?

Use your gateway’s local address. This is the address scanner mode will make connections from, and the address that the module will listen on for inbound connections.

What is your application? (Adapter mode or Scanner mode?)

I’m not sure what you mean by mode, this is new to me?

In its base mode, my module is an Ethernet/IP adapter, that is, it emulates an I/O module that a real processor can connect to. Or, for advanced cases, it can emulate a full 100-slot chassis full of I/O. The emulation includes faking the responses of a Logix processor’s tag tree and data types.

In its premium mode, my module adds Ethernet/IP scanner functions, allowing it to connect to I/O devices without having them connected to a separate PLC. Multiple physical devices can be scanned within a single Host Device instance of my module.

My module is all about Ethernet/IP as an I/O protocol.

My application is adapter mode.
I have the PLC online but can’t put the new program in it until the next plant shut down. I just need the tags so I can have a working HMI when the new program is downloaded to the PLC. I imported the .L5X file of the new program to your module.