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Friction-Free Networks

Nov. 3, 2008
The Factory Floor and IT Department Set Differences Aside for the Greater Good of Network Security

By Patti Pool, New Products Editor

The networking issue in manufacturing facilities is increasingly complex since it’s at the center of all the activity around one plant or the core of a series of facilities globally. The friction between the IT department and the factory floor staff has been an issue for a long time. Although cooperation has made some strides during the past 10 years, security in networking has come to the forefront.

New cyber tools and technologies are on the way. These tools can provide the fundamental changes needed for computer and network architectures. The changes will improve security and should have equal billing with other network technologies that come our way. The more critical the industrial plant, the more critical the cybersecurity features for plant security.

With these new advances in both hardware and software for plant security comes the additional burden of hiring and training information security professionals. There is a real shortage of knowledgeable and skilled security professionals. Many companies will be challenged to retrain their staffs. Companies must give on-the-job training for the fast-paced evolution of networking and security. Academia also must be pressed into action to deliver graduates who will fulfill the demand for more and better-trained information security specialists. Continued education, training and awareness are the key to success in the 21st century.

Cross-CommunicationCoDeSys 3.0 programming software provides object-oriented programming extensions that give users the ability to create flexible reusable codes for use with controllers such as the Speedway 767 I/O system. Using CoDeSys with a controller means that even if one portion of an application shuts down, production will continue unaffected. CoDeSys programming enables cross-communication among control systems, ensuring continuous operation.Wago262/255-6222

Magnum MNS-6K-SECURE software is an optional network management software that is designed for customers needing extra security in their networks. It includes security features such as an SNTP server. The server provides synchronized time services for your network to support critical applications such as video surveillance where event information is time-dependent or any application where several network devices and attached computers and databases need to be time-coordinated.
GarrettCom; 510/438-9071; www.garrettcom.com

Network ManagementMXview provides a number of network management tools for monitoring and diagnosing industrial Ethernet networks via a Web browser UI. The system boosts stability and allows administrators to maintain and upgrade an entire arsenal of Ethernet switches, all at the same time.Moxa888/moxa-usa
Demotion ControliSNMP suite supports device auto-demotion for managed or unmanaged devices. Users can adjust auto-demotion parameters to allow drivers to temporarily place a device off-scan in the event that it is not responding. A new ScanFloor device property provides robust polling control when the control application can’t tolerate a one-size-fits-all approach to network device polls. ScanFloor handles devices independently, especially when agent loading is a concern. System tags expose auto-demotion and ScanFloor tags to any HMI or control application.Kepware Technologies207/775-1660
OPC Server SoftwareN-View OLE for Process Control (OPC) server software will work with industrial standard OPC client software and most popular HMI packages.  It provides complete network traffic and status monitoring for N-Tron managed and unmanaged industrial Ethernet switches with the optional N-View.N-Tron251/342-2164
OPC Server for SNMPThe Matrikon OPC Server for SNMP helps to bridge together plant-floor operation with IT data so both parties have the information they need to monitor equipment and diagnose problems. The OPC Server enables full monitoring and control of SNMP-enabled devices from any OPC compliant application such as IT Management Systems and HMIs. Matrikon877/628-7456
Easy ManagementThe user interface for Factory Manager software for implementation and maintenance of Ethernet networks shows network devices and device information, enabling a system overview. It manages central IP addresses and other configuration parameters. Devices are configured via the network. A database for further configuration, operating and diagnostic tasks, eliminates double entries and duplicated data. Factory Manager also provides SNMP-based network management and diagnostic functions and has predefined default settings and the ability to configure several devices simultaneously.Phoenix Contact800/322-3225
Quick ComfortIntraVue Version 2 software, aimed to assist individuals who aren’t network experts but require a method to quickly identify problems that can create loss of production data or even a process shutdown, features automatic topology discovery and intuitive graphical representation of infrastructure and edge devices to assist on-site individuals to easily respond to Ethernet communication issues. Alarming and remote viewing allows quick and immediate responses by both local on-site resources and remote operations.Network Vision877/499-8100

Can You Hear Me Now?
ASComm.NET communications software provides a runtime-free option for creating Windows- based control and supervisory control applications in Visual Studio.NET. It supports multiple industrial protocols, including A-B, Modbus, GE and AutomationDirect, and it provides the communications link between Windows-based .NET applications and industrial controllers, PLCs and instrumentation.
Automated Solutions

Remote Monitoring SystemHobo industrial remote monitoring system provides access to energy and HVAC/R systems data via Internet. It combines data logging hardware with built-in GSM cellular communications and Hobolink, a Web-enabled software platform. It allows users to access current and historical data, set alarm notifications and relay activations and manage and control remote monitoring systems from their desktops.Onset Computer800/564-4377
Monitor RemotelyAudemat ScriptEasy software for RMS-1000 system for remote monitoring and control systems, provides an intuitive graphical user interface (GUI) requiring no programming skills. Users drag and drop logic functions to define condition parameters. The software automatically generates monitoring and control scripts that deliver status reports and alerts. ScriptEasy includes an embedded Web server that enables configuration and status monitoring from any Internet connection. Alarms can be sent via email, SNMP and Voice/DTMF interface. Sealevel Systems864/843-4343

Network Management Software
RuggedNMS provides a platform for monitoring, configuring and maintaining mission-critical IP-based communications networks for advanced control and automation of industrial processes. The software has centralized management and monitoring of network and networked devices to achieve network availability performance and operation efficiency. Scalable and distributed architecture can support very large networks with greater network visibility to enable proactive corrective actions and improve capacity utilization.

Wireless Smart ManufacturingSensiNet Services is an application service for industrial enterprises that allows plant/facility managers to remotely monitor temperature, energy and moisture over the Internet, without having to locate the application within their own network infrastructures. The services can be used for process optimization, storage, manufacturing and testing facilities, FDA 21 CFR Part 11 compliance, heat trace and water-damage mitigation. Sensicast Systems617/901-2697 

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