We developed the concept of Device Type Templates so that we would not have to rely on Metasys configuration files being either available, or up to date. They also expose more points than Metasys typically would. For instance PID loop tuning parameters and other parameters that would normally only be exposed by the Metasys configuration utilities are exposed so that 3rd party tuning and continuous commissioning applications can be utilized for a Metasys system.
As background, here’s the process that we use in the Configure wizard to try to find the best match with point mapping. N2 devices are interrogated to determine their hardware type and the application loaded into them.
1) Best case – we have a Device Type Template that matches both the hardware type and the application loaded into device. We refer to these as Application Specific Device Type Templates.
2) Next best – we match on the hardware type but not the application. We assign a generic point map for the hardware. We refer to these as Hardware Device Type Templates.
3) Last ditch effort – we don’t find a Device Type Template that matches the hardware so we probe the device for any point that can be read and create sequentially numbered names for them.
Device Type Templates are more powerful than the original Metasys configuration files because you can customize them to meet your needs. You never need to worry about S4 Open Appliance configurations being out of date. The full configurations are stored on-board the appliance and communicated to the S4 Open Management Console whenever it connects to the appliance.
There are some cases where point assignments are ambiguous and need to be adjusted manually after the Configure Wizard completes. This is because the Metasys Configuration utilities utilize a Q&A session to determine the final configuration of an application when it is being loaded into a N2 device. In a number of cases they assign a function to the "Next Available Physical IO" during this process. Today, the Configure wizard does not have the ability to detect the responses to the Q&A session and adjust the point list.
We have a stand alone utility available that will convert Metasys configuration files to Device Type Templates. Today, this is a stand alone utility and you need to eMail the configuration files to us for conversion. In the future this capability will be integrated into the S4 Open Management Console.
For N2 Open devices this is a .PRN file, we can handle either the long or short formats.
For DX-9100 devices this is a .DMO file
Metasys databases contain the point assignments in Data Definition Language format, .DDL files
The LCP is a very old Metasys device that is the predecessor of the DX-9100. Its configuration file has a .GPS extension. This is not yet supported by the conversion utility.
Metasys Integrator configuration files are not yet supported by the conversion utility. However, in may cases you'll find a .DDL file available for the integrator.
Vendor devices, VND, do not have a configuration file. Sometimes you will find that the vendor provided a .PRN or .DDL file containing the point list. In other cases a Device Type Template needs to be generated for each Vendor Device. As we encounter these at customer sites the resulting Device Type Template is added to our library.