We have a scenario as below and request your suggestions.
We are having 10 plants located at different places. Each will have separate web server mc with Ignition, ( today it is a mix of FSQL-FPMI and IGNITION) and throwing real time data as well as history data into web using 512kbps broadband internet.
At central office we plan to have 10 Samsung HDTV (1280 x 1024), on a wall, with a web client -PC collecting data/mimics through broadband internet accessing site located Ignition +PLC systems. Question is how does one PC, through 10 different browser windows work with options to switch between 10 TV monitors. ( USER CHOICE)
So DELL has suggested that we use Dell Workstation class PC, with 4GB RAM, with multi-port VGA outputs using NVIDEA CARDS. Questions arise are
1.Should we go for 64 bit machine or 32 bit machine
2.Should we go in for Windows XP, ready well proven or go in for Windows 7.
3.Personally I love Windows 7 due to colourfull and zazzy features including that of cascading multiple browsers – makes an impact on top management people, but XP is a proven workhorse. Your recommendation please?
4.DELL says that Windows 7 is anyway provided with downside compatibility to switch over to XP always. So nothing to worry, but cautions that 64 bit, Windows 7, OS can not be downgraded to 32 bit Windows XP later. What should I choose?
5.Dell India ( at least local office) has no experience of NVIDEA multiport card beyond 2 ports. What should be safe choice for us?. Should we go in for 4 port , 2 NVIDEA cards in one machine to offer 8 outputs and buy additional Dell workstation with single card , 4 port, with some left as spare. Your views
6.To get 8 browser windows open, each with real time data and archivals, I am afraid that 4GB RAM mc may not suffice. What is your expert opinion, if not 4GB, and then in case 6GB or 8GB, we have to explore if we will be forced into a high end server class machine for simple centralized viewing room.
7.As VGA cables are available with Samsung HDTV, there is a fear of good quality picture on TV screens not available or compromised using the NVIDEA card. Less than what NVIDEA cards can offer really. Your views please.
8.Touch screen interface is an exciting feature of Legacy Products-PMI etc. I assume IGNITION must be offering the same. Is that right?
9.Dell does not supply TOUCHSCREEN feature with their monitor and says that 3rd party upgrade is what they suggest normally. Not sure how to overcome.
10.I was thinking of APPLE PC for high quality mimic display at above central display office , but they have advised that buying NVIDEA Cards etc will not be assured or supplied by them, and we must our own arrangements. Any reference or experience elsewhere by IA or any other user?
Any ideas or sharing will be helpful.