800xA integration with PI using AfwOpcDaSurrogate

1. We are planning to include the primary PI OPC DA Interface client node to our 800xA domain and connect it via DCOM to the AfwOpcDaSurrogate OPC server on the primary Aspect server A, and the backup PI node - to the secondary Aspect server B. We have multiple redundant connectivity servers, so accessing AfwOpcDaSurrogate on the Aspect servers seems easier rather than connecting to individual connectivity servers.

2. Another option is to connect PI OPC clients to AfwOpcDaSurrogate servers running on individual connectivity servers.

3. The third option is to install AfwOpcDaSurrogate on the PI interface nodes and access them locally. Which installation package the AfwOpcDaSurrogate OPC server comes with?

What do you think will be the best option?

Thank you.

By Aztec on 7/2/2017 | Like (0) | Report

This is what I found in 3BSE041434-510 J System 800xA System Guide Technical Data and Configuration:
"The OPC server surrogate is normally
running in one of the Aspect Servers, if it communicates with the external application via DCOM. If the external application has an access agent that needs to run in the 800xA System it is not recommended to install that agent in the Aspect Server. Instead, a separat Application Server should be set up, running the third party access agent and the corresponding surrogate process. Also, for very large external data volumes (>10,000 OPC items), it is recommended to install the surrogate in a separate Application Server."

Now the question is how to insall the AfwOpcDaSurrogate OPC server on a separate node (in 800xA domain)?

By Rob Lyon on 7/2/2017 | Like (0) | Report

An "application server" is just an 800xA client with third party applications running on it. See my comments about using OPC History Data access on an interface node. ie an Application Server.

Add New Comment


asked 8 months ago



Aspect server(s) should be fine.

The surrogate has no track record of bloating CPU or memory (advocating a move off the aspect servers).

Study best practice! Eg there is a BIG difference between a scanning and a subscribing OPC client. Some connectivities like MOD300 or 800xA for Advant Master have significant bottlenecks in OPC that need special care. Proceed with caution.

Buy license for third party OPC client(s)

Stefan Stromqvist   

answered 8 months ago


Add New Comment



Do not use OPC-DA as the interface between 800xA and PI. This places significant extra subscription load on to the controllers and is entirely the wrong interface to choose. As Stefan says, mis configuration of the DA interface can cause serious issues with Advant master CPU loads and even flat out crash MOD300 systems.

The correct interface to use is OPC-*H*DA. The *HISTORY* OPC Interface

You are already logging a large number of points onto the 800xA Basic History service. By using PI's OPC-HDA interface, you subscribe data from the Basic History serverice, NOT the controller. Your PI data collection piggy backs on the existing history and adds no extra load onto the controllers.

You also automatically get redundancy doing this. The PI Interface can recover history data after a failure. As long as basic history has the data then the PI interface can recover that data, even if the interface has failed for days or weeks.You can also backfill data if you are adding PI to an existing 800xA system.

The opc interface you are currently suggesting cannot do this and requires a redundant installation or you *WILL* lose data at some point.

The suggested installation for the PI OPC-HDA interface is to use a seprate "interface Node". This is simply an 800xA client. Install the PI interface software on this node, configure buffering etc and connect the PI interface to the OPC History data source running on the local machine. 800xA then handles all of the redundancy between the 800xA history service providers. The PI interface will be able to access any point that has an 800xA log configuration.

To configure the PI points, Extract the 800xA History Log configuration using the BDM log manager spreadsheet and filter out the required logs. The Pi Point Data source is simply "ObjectName:Property"

Rob Lyon   

answered 8 months ago


By Stefan Stromqvist on 7/3/2017 | Like (0) | Report

Thanks Rob. I have way too few miles on PI to be able to output like you did, but I'm absorbing! :-)

You can only guess how many sites I visit, remote into or otherwise assist that have an OPC overload. Not too seldom the system caretaker did a good job installing but they could not dream of what quantities or volume of raw data the process analysts, etc. is placing orders for via the pipeline into 800xA

Add New Comment

Get weekly AKS updates

Partner Exclusive Webinars


> – Login to the partner portal to register

Points Redemption Program - Redeem your points for ABB training, Bluetooth speakers and mugs. Terms and conditions >

Earn points when you refer a friend
AKS Referral Program is "Live" - Learn more

AKS Experts

Ask Sumit Gargav   

Rank: 3

I have worked with Freelance in majority, with 800xA FD and Melody system partly. Also had opportunity to work with Protocols - HART,Profibus,FF & Modbus.

Ask Harsha.D   

Rank: 7

Tech.Support,software and commisioning engineer with Proficient knowledge in 800xA and its products, RNRP,Networking in general.

Ask Flavio Mussolin   

Rank: 4

ABB AVP, Senior Electronic and Automation Engineer with over 30 years of experience in the field of process automation automotive, pharmaceutical, hollow glass, steel and rolling.

Ask nikismith   

Rank: 246

I have been a part of the Recording & Control Factory team for 17 years in total, having spent a number of years as a repairs technician withi the manufacturing department, but being in my current role for 9 years now.

Ask Ronny Lindström   

Rank: 16

ABB Service Engineer

Ask Govindaraj   

Rank: 10

Working in ABB India Operation Center. Have Project engineering and commissioning experience in ABB 800xA, Freelance, AC500.

Ask Stefan Stromqvist   

Rank: 1

I joined ABB in the year of 1994 and has since 1999 been working as a Service & Support Engineer at BU Control Technologies in Västerås, Sweden. My areas of expertise are: 800xA Base, 800xA for Advant Master, Information Management, operating systems, RNRP and Ethernet comms/networking in general.

Ask Dieter Henkel   

Rank: 20

Ask kstoilov   

Rank: 11

Control System Engineer: 800xA, Compact 800, AC500, AC31-50, Advant Master, Simatic, AC&DC Drives 11 years worked for ABB - Control Systems

Ask WvanWees   

Rank: 6

I'm a senior service engineer working for ABB in The Netherlands.

Ask Rob Lyon   

Rank: 2

info@lymac.co.nz I'm an independent DCS software and commissioning engineer with extensive experience in 800xA and other ABB products. I've worked in almost every corner of the world and still haven't seen it all.

Ask MMM   

Rank: 5

ABB PA CT Technical Support