Pablo Benvenuto

PI 101, Module 3: Connecting to a PI System

Discussion created by Pablo Benvenuto Champion on Sep 28, 2012

Are you ready to understand a little bit better the PI System? Well, here we go then. When connecting to a PI System, you will either be looking for data in the PI System that is exposed through the PI Asset Framework (AF) Server or for tag data in a PI Data Archive Server.

Connecting to a PI Asset Framework Server

When you install the PI System Client, either as a new installation or as part of a larger software installation (some programs install the PI AF Client), you will be asked for the name of the server (hostname or IP address) and credentials. Using the PI System Explorer tool you can then see which PI AF server you are connected to by selecting the database button in the upper left.


The Select Database dialog box will show you which server you are connected to (the drop down along the top). To connect to a different PI AF Server click the ellipsis button (…) to search for another PI AF Server.


When connecting to another PI AF Server you will be prompted for credentials.

Examining Credentials for the PI AF Server

The only way to determine your connected credentials is to create something (a new element for example) and look to the status bar.


Connecting to a PI Data Archive Server

You can use the PI Connection Manager to connect to the PI Data Archive Server, which you can access from a number of different places in the system. When the dialog box is invoked it will display all of the PI Servers that have been configured from that machine. Below is what it looks like. (Note: The first time a PI application is installed, a Default Server is selected. This is why, even if you have never configured a PI Server at least one should appear in your PI Connection Manager)


What is most useful is which PI Server(s) you are currently connected to and the credentials used. Exactly how you are connected is displayed in two places. (Note: This is particularly useful if you are having permissions issues)

Create a New Connection to a PI Data Archive Server

When connecting to the PI Server, unless directed otherwise leave the Connection Type and the Port Number respectively to PI3 and 5450. Other selections are for legacy systems.



Cleanup Connections in the Known Servers Table

All PI Server connections are stored in something called the Known Servers Table (KST). Each client computer keeps its own serialized list of PI Servers in the registry. Sometimes there can be duplicate or bad entries. Use this feature of the About PI-SDK application to clean it out.



Review Questions


Take a few minutes to familiarize yourself with your PI Server. Open the PI Connection Manager from one of the client tools such as PI ProcessBook or PI DataLink. Make a note of the PI Server or Network Node you are connected to. What user are you connected as? What Pi System Version do you see displayed? Do you know what the latest version released is? Do you know that customers on the Sofware Reliability Program (SRP) get free updates?

In the next Module we will discuss the PI System Time Format. Go to Module 4 or go to the Workshop Outline.


You might find these two videos useful.