Online Courses Frequently Asked Questions (FAQs)

Document created by kholstein Employee on Oct 14, 2015Last modified by jkim on Jun 5, 2018
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What is the format of the online courses?

Our facilitated online courses are 3 weeks long, but all of the material is online so the lectures and material can be completed at whatever time is convenient for you. Typically. learners will spend the first two weeks consuming the video lectures and going through hands-on exercises. By week #3, we encourage you to spend some time on the final project. If you're registered for a facilitated session, there will be a course facilitator(s) to help you create a good final project and to provide feedback on your work. OSIsoft facilitators will answer any of your questions throughout the course or help you come up with an idea and implementation for your final project, just like how you would have access to an instructor in an in-person course.


Will each course really take 3 weeks? What's the time commitment like?

The time commitment for the online courses will vary depending on the course; however, each course will not take 3 entire weeks. We conduct them in 3 week periods though so you can work at your own pace, on your own schedule. You will have access to the materials 24/7, so you do not need to work around the clock. For more detailed time commitment, navigate to the course page and refer to "What is the format of this online course."

What do I gain by registering for a facilitated session?

The course materials for all of our online courses (video lectures, exercises, etc.) are available in our community for you to access, even if you are not registered for a course. However, by registering you will gain access to the course facilitator who can help you along the way and you will receive a certificate of completion after turning in a successful final project.


What's involved in the online courses, and how can I access the materials?

The online courses are each composed of a set of video lectures, exercises, and a final project. There are also discussion forums for students to interact with one another, ask questions, and share their experiences with the PI System. All of the material can be found on the course pages within the Learn PI space of the PI Square community. In order to interact with the courses, you will need to be logged into the PI Square community with an SSO account.


What is the Cloud Environment?

Simply put, OSIsoft Cloud Environment is a PI System learning sandbox that allows you to learn new skills, to expand your knowledge and maybe to try things that you simply cannot do in your production environment. OSIsoft learning team uses these carefully crafted Cloud Environments for various forms of training, whether it is a public classroom training, a hands-on lab at our Users Conferences or an online course. Depends on your training needs, each Cloud Environment contains different pre-configured software and access durations:

  • The Cloud Environments for the majority of our online courses are configured to run 21 days since the first launch to give you sufficient time to work on the course exercises and the final project.
  • If you are going through the self-guided Hands-on Labs with the Cloud Environments, each cloud session will run for 8 hours. Since the individual hands-on labs are designed for 2-3 hour time commitment, the 8-hour run time should be sufficient to complete a lab. If you want to re-visit the content, you can always re-launch the same environment during your Cloud Environment access period.


Should I purchase an online course Cloud Environment?

Learners are encouraged to work with their own PI System to complete the majority of the online courses [1]. For detailed software requirements to complete the course, please see individual course pages. For those who prefer to work in an isolated environment with pre-configured PI System, there is an option to purchase a course specific Cloud Environment. Depending on the course materials, each Cloud Environment contains different machines and  PI software. The cost for the optional online course Cloud Environments is separate from the online course registration. More information can be found at the bottom of each online course catalogue or registration page.


[1] The following PI Admin courses involve more administrative tasks (creating tags, installing interfaces, configuring security, etc.) which we recognize experimenting with should not be done in a production environment. If you do not have your own test PI System, please consider working with the online course Cloud Environment.


Access TypeAnonymous (not signed in)Signed in with OSIsoft SSO accountRegistered for Online Course

Registered for

Online Course Cloud Environment

Read forumsYesYesYesYes
Contribute to forumsNoYesYesNo
Watch video lecturesYesYesYesYes
Comment on videosNoYesYesNo
Ask questions in the communityNoYesYesNo
Ask questions directly to a course facilitatorNoNoYesNo
View course exercises and final project promptYesYesYesYes
Submit exercises and get feedback from facilitatorNoNoYesNo
Submit final project and get feedback from facilitatorNoNoYesNo
Earn a certificate of completion for the courseNoNoYesNo

Access to the course-specific

Cloud Environment



What system requirements do I need for the online courses?

The online courses are all hosted on our PI Square community, so Internet access is required. Additionally, the video lectures are hosted on YouTube, so ensuring access to the videos is key. Otherwise, having access to the necessary application for the course (i.e. PI DataLink, PI ProcessBook, PI System Explorer for AF, etc.) or the Cloud Environment is needed.


The Cloud Environments are composed of virtual machines hosted on Microsoft Azure that you can access remotely. If you decided to work with the Cloud Environment, you will need the following:

  • A network connection with 1 Mbps of bandwidth available per user
  • A Remote Desktop Protocol (RDP) Client
  • Access the domain where the machines are hosted. A typical connection string has the form, where the cloud service name is specific to a group of virtual machines and xxxxx is a port in the range 60000-60050. Therefore users connecting to Azure virtual machines must be allowed to connect to the domain * throughout the port range 60000-60050. If you cannot connect, check your company firewall policies and ensure that you can connect to this domain on the required ports
  • You can test your connection by downloading one of the test zip files from the OSIsoft Learning website and following the instructions in the readme file contained in them. To download the test files, visit OSIsoft Learning FAQs --> Cloud Environments --> What are the system requirements?


What software do I need for the online courses?

Please see the individual course pages for details on what's required for that course.


Can I expect help round the clock during an online course?

While we will try to respond as promptly as we can, we do not have instructors on hand 24/7 for the whole 3-week duration of an online course. Depending on your time zone versus that of the facilitator, there may be a roughly 24 hour turnaround for questions. You are also more than welcome to ask questions in the community using the discussion forums, which may have a faster response time.


My organization hasn't configured our AF hierarchy yet. Are there any samples?

Throughout PI Square you will find various sample AF databases that have been uploaded for a variety of project. Your best option is probably the The specified item was not found. as these are industry specific and very detailed.


For simpler examples, please check out:

PI DataLink I Online Course Materials



Instructions on how to import a database:

Not authorized to view the specified discussion 1136


Can I still take the course if my organization doesn't use PI Asset Framework (AF)?

Most of our courses are designed based on the asset-based functionality to help you achieve advanced solutions with the PI System. You can use the aforementioned Asset Based PI Example Kits to start working with AF. Alternately, you can also complete a limited or modified version of the course exercises and final project using the software versions or data items that work for you (for instance, using only PI Points instead of AF attributes). The only consequence is that these modified projects may be unable to mirror all functionality covered in the video lectures.


Specifically, when it comes to creating PI ProcessBook displays or PI DataLink reports, there are few differences between doing so with PI Points versus AF attributes as those are simply the source of the data. The functions, symbols, etc. within PI DataLink or PI ProcessBook would remain the same. If you are unclear about how to do something using PI Points instead of AF attributes, just post a question directly in the course forums and we can help you get around your limitations if the functionality will allow for it.


Can I earn a certificate of completion through the online courses?

Yes, you will also get a certificate of completion from the online courses if you are registered for a course and successfully finish and submit a final project to the course’s facilitator. However, we do not have a certification program (since we are not an accredited educational organization) so you cannot use these courses for continuing education credits.


Can I take an online course outside of the scheduled sessions?

Unfortunately, you cannot take the course and earn a certificate of completion outside of the scheduled sessions. Outside of those dedicated times, there will be no facilitator to answer questions or grade final projects. You are welcome to work through the course material on your own (see course pages in Learn PI ), however, there will not be a dedicated facilitator.


If you just want to go through the course content with the optional Cloud Environment outside of a scheduled session, you can just purchase the Cloud Environment. Again, outside of the scheduled times, there will be no facilitator to ask questions to or to grade your final project. Thus, you will not earn a certificate of completion for doing this.


What's the difference between the OSIsoft Online Courses and the OSIsoft Learning YouTube Channel?

In general, our online courses are intended to go more in-depth than the videos we have on our YouTube Channel by providing both video lectures and exercises, thus making them more like the classes we offer at our public training centres. Our Learning YouTube Channel holds over 1500 videos that focus on a specific task or feature, intended for the person who knows exactly what they are looking for and for on-the-job performance support.


These videos look really blurry. Can I see them in higher definition?

Yes! All of our videos are recorded in 1280 x 720 resolution, YouTube's high definition dimensions. The player will automatically set your resolution based on some of your network connectivity parameters. However, you can also manually decide which resolution you'd like. Check out the Online Course Videos - Tips and Tricks to see how!


How to Cancel or Re-schedule an online course registration

We all know that sometimes life just gets a little busy and things we planned on doing, like taking an online course to expand our PI System knowledge, sneak up on us at an inconvenient time.

Thus, if you need to cancel your registration for an online course, you can do so on the OSIsoft Learning Website before the scheduled start date of the course. After the course has started, you will not be able to cancel your registration. If

you would prefer to reschedule your online course to a later date, instead of cancel, please e-mail with your course information and desired changes.


If you would like to cancel your online course registration, please follow the steps below. We are sorry to see you go!


1. Go to and log in to your SSO account (link in the top right corner)


2. Once logged in, select the "My Registrations" tab and then the "My Registrations" ribbon within that. Note you can also "Search" for your registration using the e-mail address and confirmation number



3. Find the course that you would like to cancel in the list and select the "X"

4. You will be prompted to confirm your selection. If you are sure you would like to cancel your course, select "OK"


5. Check your e-mail for the address associated with your SSO account; you should receive an e-mail notification that your registration was cancelled

6. Change the filter to either "All" or "Cancelled" and you should see that your course registration was successfully cancelled