Software Toolbox Technical Blog

Zachary Parham


Recent Posts

Did You Know Google IoT Core is Shutting Down? Start Preparing Now!

4 min read

By Zachary Parham on Oct 27, 2022 2:00:00 PM


If you have been following our blog for a while or have been exploring IoT platforms available in the market, you may know that the Google Cloud Platform combined with the Google IoT Core is a frequently used combination in the industry. Google has recently announced that it will be shutting down the Google IoT Core. In doing so, Google is forcing many of its Cloud Platform users to switch platforms.

In this blog post, we will review detailed information about the alternatives to the Google Cloud Platform that are available for use with all of the IoT capable products we provide, and how the change works.

Continue Reading

Faster LGH File Inspector ROI: More Flexibility & Up to 86% Reduction in Query Times!

6 min read

By Zachary Parham on Oct 20, 2022 2:00:00 PM

The LGH File Inspector software solution enables rapid query and export of Wonderware InTouch LGH files to Excel & CSV for analysis and reporting. Following on the recent LGH File Inspector v3 release a few months ago, the LGH File Inspector has been updated again to Version 3.5.

This release is all about “Faster Time to ROI” with much faster queries, ways to add calculated value to the data, and more options for how to view & export data, and access recently run projects. Find out how these updates can benefit you with this technically deep blog post.

Continue Reading

Tech Support Corner: Understanding TOP Server Channel & Device Limits

4 min read

By Zachary Parham on Sep 8, 2022 2:00:00 PM


Our team often gets questions about the extent to which our products can be used. It’s important to differentiate between technical versus practical limits when discussing what is and is not possible.

Continuing our Tech Support Corner blog series, I will be providing some insights into how many channels, devices, and tags it is technically possible to set up in TOP Server while also highlighting some practical rules of thumb to observe to ensure the best performance.

Continue Reading

Understanding OPC UA Certificates and Certificate Authorities

5 min read

By Zachary Parham on Jul 14, 2022 2:00:00 PM


If you use OPC UA, you are likely at least somewhat familiar with OPC UA certificates. OPC UA client and server applications typically have Application Instance Certificates to provide application-level security. They are used for establishing a secure connection using Asymmetric Cryptography.

OPC UA certificates include a digital signature by the generator of the certificate. This digital signature can be self-signed or can be signed by a Certificate Authority (CA). Both types of certificates provide the same level of security and can be used in Asymmetric Cryptography. The major difference between CA signed and self-signed certificates in an OPC UA installation is the effort required to deploy and maintain the certificates. The choice of when to use a CA issued certificate versus a self-signed certificate depends on the installation and site requirements.

Many of our products leverage the OPC UA Configuration tool from the OPC Foundation to create and trust certificates and certificate authorities (CA). This tool actually installs with our OPC Data Client toolkit but is also available from the OPC Foundation. But how do we navigate this tool and the use of OPC UA certificates as a whole?

In this blog post, we will cover both methods of UA certificate signing, as well as the tool mentioned above for easily managing UA certificates for your OPC UA applications.

Continue Reading

How to Easily Integrate Your OPC Router Data with Google Cloud IoT

10 min read

By Zachary Parham on Apr 14, 2022 2:00:00 PM


The Google Cloud Platform (GCP) is Google’s cloud solution that brings all of Google’s cloud computing services together. Google’s own services, such as Google Search and YouTube, run on the GCP, but end users can also use their cloud services.

Google Cloud Platform, for the Internet of Things (IoT) area, offers their “Cloud IoT Core” services, which provide the functionalities to connect large quantities of devices via an integrated MQTT broker. In this blog post, we will show the necessary steps for connecting this Cloud IoT Core to the different data interfaces supported by OPC Router.

Continue Reading

Quick Start - AVEVA System Platform to TOP Server via OPC DA

4 min read

By Zachary Parham on Mar 24, 2022 2:00:00 PM


TOP Server for AVEVA users are probably aware that TOP Server supports several methods for connecting AVEVA software solutions. TOP Server simultaneously supports SuiteLink, OPC DA Classic and OPC UA (as well as DDE for legacy applications). Users of AVEVA System Platform specifically commonly connect to TOP Server via either SuiteLink or OPC DA.

In this blog post, we will cover the basic steps to connect AVEVA System Platform to TOP Server via OPC DA, expanding connectivity options for AVEVA users. We'll also make our step-by-step quick start application note available for getting started.

Continue Reading

How to Easily Integrate Your Data with Google Cloud IoT Core

11 min read

By Zachary Parham on Jul 8, 2021 2:00:00 PM


IoT, IIoT, MQTT, Connectivity of Things, Big Data, The Cloud - by now, you've heard these terms in some way, shape or form.  Perhaps you're working on a project requiring you to push and/or pull important process or business data to/from a cloud solution. Big data analytics applications ranging from predictive maintenance to "smart" manufacturing, amongst many other use cases, are becoming more and more common.

And Google© is a household name both in the private and professional world. Chances are, you got here using Google – whether through a Google search, or by using Google Chrome (or both). But did you know that Google has their own cloud solution called Google Cloud IoT Core©? Amongst many other things, Google Cloud IoT Core acts as an MQTT broker for storing and sharing important data in a secure cloud along with artificial intelligence and analytics and many other IoT services.

But how do you go from your data sources to Google Cloud IoT Core? In this second post in a series about connecting DataHub to IoT solutions (if you missed our first post on connecting to Amazon AWS IOT Core©, click here), we'll step through how you can configure Google Cloud IoT Core and connect it to your process and business data sources using the Cogent DataHub IoT Gateway©.

Continue Reading

About this Blog

We're engineers like you, so this blog focuses on "How to" appnotes, videos, tech team tips, product update announcements, user case studies, and other technical updates.  Subscribe to updates below. Your feedback and questions on posts are always welcomed - just use the area at the bottom of any post.

Subscribe to our Blog

Recent Posts

Posts by Topic

See all