Network Connect Blog
This is the first Blog installment for Network Connect to answer some basic questions that I get.
Network Connect post are identified by Tags of (PLC, NC, Network Connect, Profinet, Modbus, EtherNet/IP, Rockwell, Allen-Bradley, Siemens).
What is Network Connect
Network Connect is a set of products that allows direct two-way communication to/from PLC’s and Zebra NC products.
Zebra supported protocols
EtherNet/IP – is a Rockwell, Allen-Bradly protocol
Profinet – is a Siemens protocol
Modbus – is a generic protocol
Zebra and NC
Zebra currently has two sets of products that are NC enabled. ADC has the EA3600 that enables connectivity to/from the DS3600 scanners and PLC’s via EtherNet/IP, Profinet, Modbus & TPC/IP. AIT has special firmware for the LinkOS printers that allows PLC connectivity via EtherNet/IP.
EA3600 comes in a few different configurations, but must be purchased kitted with a DS3600 scanner.
- EA3600 – EtherNet/IP, Modbus
- EA3600 – Profinet
- EA3600 – TCP/IP
Printer firmware comes in two configurations.
- Firmware only (field kit)
- Factory installed firmware
- Does Network Connect Firmware come standard?
- Printers require special firmware to be purchased for a printer to be able to do EtherNet/IP connectivity.
- What printers can NC firmware be created for?
- NC can be created for all LinkOs printers
- Can my customer buy a EA3600 without a scanner?
- No, unless they are buying the TCP/IP model.
- EA3600’s are kitted with a DS36xx scanner and must be purchased this way.
- Is the ZE500 a NC printer?
- No, it is not a LinkOS printer and there are currently no plans to upgrade it.
- What functionality do I loose with a NC printer?
- Printer still has all of the same functionality it does with the normal firmware. Emulation of other manufacture languages is not supported.
- What configuration changes are needed for the scanner to work with the EA3600?
- None. When you connect the scanner to the EA3600 it tells the scanner how it is going to communicate.
- Need to make sure that wireless scanner and cradle are on the latest firmware.
- What functionality do I loose when connecting a scanner to a EA3600?
- Can load the NC printer firmware on more than on device?
- The firmware is the same for a line of printers, but requires a license to install it on each printer.
- What RA PLC version are supported?
- Should work with all PLC’s
- NC EDS and AOP’s were tested back to PLC firmware v24. The hardware will work with older PLC versions, but require a generic module to be created.
- Do our devices support Microligix and ControlLogix500?
- Explicit messaging can be done but has not been fully tested.