Configuring the DDESuitelink Client Object in the ArchestrA IDE

Tech Note: ISS-TN076
Published Date: October 15, 2008
Primary Product: Application Server, Communication Drivers
Revision Date:

Applies to

  • Wonderware Application Server 2.x, 3.x
  • Wonderware DAServer/IOServer


This tech note details the procedure used to configure DDE (Data Dynamic Exchange) and Wonderware Suitelink client connections using Wonderware Application Server and the ArchestrA IDE (Integrated Development Environment). The DDESuiteLinkClient object available in Archestra IDE provides a client connection to DDE or Suitelink servers so that data can be read and written to external data sources such as a PLC (Programmable Logic Controller).

This tech note consists of three parts:

  • first part will detail the process of configuring and deploying a new instance of the $DDESuiteLinkClient template for communication with a data source,
  • second part will detail testing of the deployed DDESuiteLinkClient object
  • and third part will build on the previous steps and configure an automation object which will reference data from the DDESuiteLinkClient object.

Specifically, this example will detail the procedure for connecting Wonderware Application Server to a DAServer (Data Access Server) using the DDESuitelinkClient object.

Part 1 – Creating, configuring and deploying a new instance of the DDESuiteLinkClient Object

1. Open the ArchestrA IDE application (Start -> All Programs -> Wonderware -> ArchestrA IDE)

and connect to the appropriate Galaxy (in this tech note the galaxy’s name is “Testing”).

Note: A deployed Platform, Engine and Area will be necessary for this example.

2. Select the Template Toolbox tab and locate the $DDESuiteLinkClient object template. Right-click on the object template and select “New -> Instance” to create a new instance of the DDESuiteLinkClient object.

You should now see a new instance of this object in the Unassigned Host area of the Deployment View.

3. Double-click on the newly created instance to open its configuration in the right pane.

On the General tab enter “Server node” and “Server name”.

  • Server node” field – configure with the node name or IP address where the I/O or DAServer is located (in this example the DAServer is located on a host called MARKB2);
  • Server name” field – configure with the application name of the DDE or Suitelink server (in this example the application name used is DASABCIP; if the required application name for the data source is not known, please refer to the product documentation);

Next configure the rest of the fields for this object:

  • Detect connection alarm generates an alarm upon connection loss
  • Communication protocol determines whether DDE or Wonderware Suiteink protocol is being used
  • DDE login allows a specific Windows user account to be used for DDE/NetDDE communication (NetDDE – Network Dynamic data Exchange)
  • Reconnect security determines the security classification required to be able to force a reconnection to the data source

4. Switch the Topic tab on the configuration window and click on the blue plus (+) sign above the topic list to add a new topic. In this example, our topic name will be PLC1.

Note: This topic name needs to exactly match the topic or device group that has been configured in the I/O or DAServer. If the required topic name is unknown, please review the configuration of the associated I/O or DAServer (below is an example of the DASABCIP device group configuration)

5. Now, save and check-in the configured DDESuiteLinkClient object. Assign this object to an engine in Deployment View.

6. Make sure the I/O or DAServer being used is started before deployment. Then right-click on this object and select Deploy. Click on the OK button to confirm deployment.

Part 2 – Testing the deployed DDESuiteLinkClient object

1. Right-click on the deployed DDESuiteLinkClient object and select View in Object Viewer from the menu.  This will open the Object Viewer window.
In that window you will see a list of the attributes of DDESuiteLinkClient object. Locate ConnectionStatus and confirm its value is Connected.

If the ConnectionStatus value is not Connected, review the configuration of the DDESuitelinkClient object for errors and make sure that the associated I/O or DAServer is running and connected to the network.

Note: The values listed in the Object Viewer are not automatically updated.  To update the current value of an attribute, either click and highlight the attribute in the list, or right click on the appropriate attribute and add it to the watch window.

Part 3 – Configuring an application object to reference data from the DDESuiteLinkClient object

1. Select an appropriate Application Object from the Template Toolbox.  Right-click on this object and select “New -> Instance“.  In this example, the $Booleantemplate will be used.

Move this new instance from the ‘Unassigned Host‘ area to an ‘Area‘ instance in Deployment View.

2. Double-click on this new object instance to open its configuration. On the General tab enter I/O reference in the PV Input Source field.

The I/O reference should have the following format:

<DINetworkObject_Name>.<Topic_Name>.<Item/Register>   where:

  • <DINetworkObject_Name> – the instance name of the DDESuiteLinkClient object
  • <Topic_Name> – the exact topic name configured in the DDESuiteLinkClient object
  • <Item/Register> – the data item from the data source, typically a PLC register or tagname

For example: DDESuitelinkClient_001.PLC1.$SYS$Status

3. Save and check-in this object. Next, right-click on this object, select Deploy, and click OK.

4. Once the object has deployed, right-click on it and select View in Object Viewer from the menu. Next locate the˜PV attribute in the list and confirm that both its value is correct, and the quality is C0:Good.

If the value is not correct and/or the quality is not good, confirm that the configuration for this item is correct and it is a valid data point in the PLC.

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