New HMI Software Adapted for Windows Vista

July 24, 2008
Siemens Announces New Deployment of Simatic WinCC on Vista Platform and Extends XP Support

Siemens Energy & Automation introduced what it calls a faster and more precise way to view plant operations at the 2008 Siemens Automation Summit in Chicago. Simatic WinCC scalable SCADA visualization software has been adapted to Windows Vista, giving operators a uniform look and feel for the entire plant operation.

“The main feature of this is our deployment into the Vista platform,” said Phil Aponte from Siemens’ HMI marketing group. “Users now have the ability to use Vista for its enhanced graphics capabilities. We’ve taken the Vista functionality and moved it back into the XP platform, adding new drivers and the ability to incorporate .NET.”

The flexible WinCC software ranges from single-user to distributed multi-user systems with redundant servers and cross-site solutions with web clients. WinCC Version 7.0, in accordance with Windows Vista, provides image shadows, as well as animated GIFs or displays. Operators can use on-screen hover effects to change the color of fields by touching a cursor. In addition, a glass effect feature allows semi-transparent field displays.

Its new alarm and trend display features enable users to create individual buttons and run the export function from every control. They can also configure selections online according to specifiable criteria.

The latest version of WinCC is also compatible with older operating systems, such as Windows XP Professional and Windows Server 2003, providing users a choice of operating systems without sacrificing the latest features. “We’ll continue to support Microsoft XP,” said Jay Coughlin, manager-HMI products at Siemens. “By extending Microsoft’s operating systems, we’re trying to protect the customer’s final product life-cycle investment.”

Other enhancements available with WinCC Version 7.0 include simplified language switching, high-performance analysis functions and an integrated MS SQL Server archive database. In addition, the new version has doubled the number of power tags on standard packages from 256 to 512 and from 1,024 to 2,048.

“Simatic WinCC flexible” is designed for universal use across all sectors and suitable for all Simatic HMI operator panels. The user interface can be switched in the configuration between English, German, French, Spanish and Italian. Four Asian languages with ideographic symbols also can be selected. Projects can be set up in as many as 32 languages, of which up to 16 can be switched simultaneously online, depending on the type of device. Simatic WinCC also enables the user to diagnose and maintain operator panels remotely via the Internet, using the Sm@rtService option.

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