Tech Note 114: Guide to InTouch Application Types

Guide to InTouch Application Types

Depending on the version of InTouch, the InTouch Application Manager allows you to create several different types of InTouch applications.  This guide will provide an overview of each application type, including instructions on how to move or create backups of each application.

Stand Alone InTouch Application

Description

Stand Alone applications utilize the InTouch tag dictionary for all data point references.  These applications use the IO tag type to get data from external sources.

A Stand Alone application is created and managed by the InTouch Application Manager. It consists of a set of files maintained by the InTouch HMI in the directory file system. This type of application is built entirely with WindowMaker and run with WindowViewer.  It does not interact with the System Platform IDE, and prior to InTouch 2020, a Stand Alone application does not contain any Industrial Graphics.

Legacy applications (also called Stand Alone) refer to applications created using older versions of the InTouch software.  These applications are for backwards compatibility and support only the older rasterized graphics and wizards native to the InTouch software.

Create

Stand Alone applications are created from the InTouch Application Manager.  Select File > New to launch the wizard that will initialize the application.

When using version 2017 Update 3 or earlier, select “Legacy InTouch Application” as the application type in the Create New Application wizard.

Modify

To modify a Stand Alone application, select the WindowMaker option from the InTouch Application Manager.  If the application was created with an older version of the software, opening the application will automatically migrate the application forward to the version of the software currently installed.

Backup

To create a backup of a Stand Alone application, simply make a copy of the application folder.  This folder location is determined when the application is created and can be found using the InTouch Application Manager.

Copy

To copy the application to another computer, copy the application folder onto the target machine.  Use the Find Application feature in the InTouch Application Manager to add the copied folder to the list of available applications.

 

Managed InTouch Application

Description

Managed applications are not created using the InTouch Application Manager.  These applications are derived from the $InTouchViewApp object within the System Platform IDE.  These applications support both the older rasterized graphics and wizards as well as the vector based Industrial Graphics.

Each managed application is associated with an InTouchViewApp object, which is derived from a base template.  A managed application appears in Application Manager as Managed and can be edited only by starting WindowMaker from the System Platform IDE.  From Application Manager, you can only start a managed application in WindowViewer.

A Managed application only uses Galaxy references and cannot connect to I/O sources other than the Application Server Galaxy.  It consists of a combination of files in the application folder as well as information stored in the Galaxy Repository database.

Create

Managed applications are created by creating a derived template of the $InTouchViewApp object in the System Platform IDE.

Modify

Opening the derived InTouchViewApp template in the IDE will launch WindowMaker to allow for modifying the application.

Backup

To create a backup of a Managed application, export the object from the IDE as an aaPKG file using the Galaxy > Export > Object feature.

Copy

A managed application is typically copied onto the target computer by deploying a derived instance of the InTouchViewApp template to the target node from the IDE.  Additionally, a managed application can be copied into a new Galaxy by importing the aaPKG file using Galaxy > Import > Objects.

 

Modern InTouch Application

Description

Modern applications are available from versions 2014 R2 though 2017 Update 3.  These applications are tag-based like a Stand Alone application but support the use of vector-based Industrial Graphics and .NET client controls.

A Modern application consists of a combination of files in the application folder as well as data stored in the application’s configuration database.  Because Modern applications require a configuration database, an instance of SQL Server or SQL Express is required to be installed on the computer.

Create

Stand Alone applications are created from the InTouch Application Manager.  Select File > New to launch the wizard that will initialize the application.  In the initialization wizard, select “Modern InTouch Application” as the application type.  The wizard will create and configure the application’s configuration database.

Modify

To modify a Modern application, select the WindowMaker option from the InTouch Application Manager.  If the application was created with an older version of the software, opening the application will automatically migrate the application forward to the version of the software currently installed.

Backup

To make a backup of a Modern application, select the application in the InTouch Application Manager and select File > Export.  The export will create an aaPKG file backup of the application.

Copy

An exported aaPKG file can be copied onto another computer by opening the InTouch Application Manager and selecting File > Import.  Because the application includes the configuration database, an instance of SQL Server or SQL Express must be installed to successfully import the application.

 

Published InTouch Application

Description

Published applications are versions of Managed or Modern applications that have been converted to a file-based format, removing the requirement for a SQL database.

Configuration for a Published application is file based, with all the required files located in the application folder.

Create

To create a published version of a Managed application, right-click the derived InTouchViewApp template for the application in the IDE, then select Publish InTouch Application.

To create a published version of a Modern application, select the application in the InTouch Application Manager and select File > Publish.

Modify

Published applications are not editable.  If you want to modify a published application, you will need to make the modifications on the original Modern or Managed application and then publish a new version.

Backup

Published application backups are Read-Only and have limited use.  To make a full backup that can be restored or modified, you will need to backup the original Modern or Managed application using the instructions above!

If you wish to make a read-only backup of a Published application, simply make a copy of the application folder.  This folder location is determined when the application is created and can be found using the InTouch Application Manager.

Copy

To copy the application to another computer, copy the application folder onto the target machine.  Use the Find Application feature in the InTouch Application Manager to add the copied folder to the list of available applications.

 

 

All Industrial Software Solutions Tech Notes are provided “as is” without warranty of any kind.
October 21st, 2021