Opc interface to the pi system

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Installation Checklist

If you are familiar with running PI data collection interface programs, this checklist helps you get the Interface running. If you are not familiar with PI interfaces, return to this section after reading the rest of the manual in detail.

This checklist summarizes the steps for installing this Interface. You need not perform a given task if you have already done so as part of the installation of another interface. For example, you only have to configure one instance of Buffering for every interface that runs on an Interface Node.

The Data Collection Steps below are required. Interface Diagnostics and Advanced Interface Features are optional.

Data Collection Steps

  1. Confirm that you can use PI SMT to configure the PI Server. You need not run PI SMT on the same computer on which you run this Interface.

  2. If you are running the Interface on an Interface Node, edit the PI Server's Trust Table to allow the Interface to write data.

  3. Run the installation kit for PI Interface Configuration Utility (ICU) on the interface node. This kit runs the PI SDK installation kit, which installs both the PI API and the PI SDK.

  4. Run the installation kit for this Interface.

  5. If you are running the Interface on an Interface Node, check the computer's time zone properties. An improper time zone configuration can cause the PI Server to reject the data that this Interface writes.

  6. Run the ICU and configure a new instance of this Interface. Essential startup parameters for this Interface are

Point Source

Interface ID

PI Server

Scan Class.


  1. Configure DCOM permissions. If the PI OPC Interface and the OPC Server are on different nodes, configure DCOM settings for both nodes. Otherwise check default DCOM permissions and make the OPC Server node use the defaults.

  2. Use the OPCClient Tool to confirm connection between the Interface Node and the OPC Server.

  3. If you will use digital points, define the appropriate digital state sets.

  4. Add the ON and OFF states to the System State Set if they not already present.

  5. Build input tags and, if desired, output tags for this Interface. Important point attributes and their use are:

PointSource – identifies all tags that belong to this instance of the interface
Location1 – interface ID/instance.
Location2 – special handling.
Location3 – tag type (Polled/Advised/Output).
Location4 – scan class number.
Location5 – optional deadband value for Advise tags.
InstrumentTag – ItemID for the OPC Server item
ExDesc – Event Tags, Long ItemID or ItemID with trailing spaces, DZero for scaled tags, or ItemID to get the timestamp for an output value

  1. Start the Interface interactively and confirm its successful connection to the PI Server without buffering.

  2. Confirm that the Interface collects data successfully.

  3. Stop the Interface and configure a buffering application (either Bufserv or PIBufss).

  4. Start the buffering application and the Interface. Confirm that the Interface works together with the buffering application by either physically removing the connection between the Interface Node and the PI Server Node or by stopping the PI Server.

  5. Configure the Interface to run as a Service. Confirm that the Interface runs properly as a Service.

  6. Restart the Interface Node and confirm that the Interface and the buffering application restart.

Interface Diagnostics

  1. Configure the I/O Rate point.

  2. Configure Scan Class Performance points.

  3. Configure UniInt Health Monitoring points

  4. If available, install the PI Performance Monitor Interface (Full Version only) on the Interface Node.

  5. Configure Performance Counter points.

  6. Install and configure the Interface Status Utility on the PI Server Node.

  7. Configure the Interface Status point.

Advanced Interface Features

  1. Configure the Interface for Disconnected Startup. Refer to the UniInt Interface User Manual for more details on UniInt Disconnect startup.

  2. Configure UniInt Failover. Refer to the OPC DA Interface Failover Manual for details related to configuring the interface for failover.

Interface Installation on Windows

OSIsoft recommends that interfaces be installed on PI Interface Nodes instead of directly on the PI Server node. A PI Interface Node is any node other than the PI Server node where the PI Application Programming Interface (PI API) has been installed (see the PI API manual). With this approach, the PI Server need not compete with interfaces for the machine’s resources. The primary function of the PI Server is to archive data and to service clients that request data.

OSIsoft highly encourages all users to use the PI Interface Configuration Utility (PI ICU) to configure and run all interfaces when the PI Server is 3.3 or greater.

After the interface has been installed and tested, Buffering should be enabled on the PI Interface Node. Buffering refers to either PI API Buffer Server (Bufserv) or the PI Buffer Subsystem. For more information about Buffering see the Buffering section of this manual.

In most cases, interfaces on PI Interface Nodes should be installed as automatic services. Services keep running after the user logs off. Automatic services automatically restart when the computer is restarted, which is useful in the event of a power failure.

The guidelines are different if an interface is installed on the PI Server node. In this case, the typical procedure is to install the PI Server as an automatic service and install the interface as an automatic service that depends on the PI Update Manager and PI Network Manager services. This typical scenario assumes that Buffering is not enabled on the PI Server node. Bufserv can be enabled on the PI Server node so that interfaces on the PI Server node do not need to be started and stopped in conjunction with PI, but it is not standard practice to enable buffering on the PI Server node. See the UniInt Interface Users Manual for special procedural information.

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