Sign in to follow this  
Followers 0
kckku

Beckhoff TwinCAT 3

5 posts in this topic

I remember trying to learn and use TwinCAT 2 about 12 years ago. At the time I had it installed on my laptop and it kind of messed it up.

Is it better to buy a small Beckhoff IPC to try to learn TwinCAT? 

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

i have twincat3 running on my current machine. personally i love freedom and plethora of programming options this system offers. just for learning one can simply download and install TwinCat3, without getting PLC or iPC  because it comes with runtime. however if you can, it is always better to get the real hardware. 

as for messing things up, things got better over the years but there are still glitches. one of the problems is that using shared CPU core for runtime is likely to conflict with any other virtualization platform (vmware, virtual box...). workaround is to assign dedicated CPU core to runtime. your Windows will have one less core but this tends to solve some of the conflicts (but not all). i use bunch of VMs for other things and... usually couple of them are running. Since TwinCat is installed on this machine, i still get occasional crash. In worst case PC got locked up  and all one can do is hold power button to force shutdown. Did not get that since assigning one of CPU cores to RT. also i try to stop RT when not in use. 

1 person likes this

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

I am still not quite sure how to go about programming each 'PLC' in TwinCAT. I am used to having programming software on my laptop and then going 'online' with each PLC in the field. The programming software travels with me.

Beckhoff is different because each controller is a PC. So does the programming software stay resident on the PLC in the field? Meaning you need a TwinCAT license per PLC in the field? Then all you need then is a monitor, mouse, and keyboard to program each PLC (and I don't have to bring my laptop along)?

I guess I would still need TwinCAT on my laptop to do offline programming. In this case does TwinCAT take over one of my CPU cores and make a virtual PLC? 

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites
2 hours ago, kckku said:

I am still not quite sure how to go about programming each 'PLC' in TwinCAT. I am used to having programming software on my laptop and then going 'online' with each PLC in the field. The programming software travels with me.

Beckhoff is different because each controller is a PC. So does the programming software stay resident on the PLC in the field? Meaning you need a TwinCAT license per PLC in the field? Then all you need then is a monitor, mouse, and keyboard to program each PLC (and I don't have to bring my laptop along)?

I guess I would still need TwinCAT on my laptop to do offline programming. In this case does TwinCAT take over one of my CPU cores and make a virtual PLC? 

I did some more research and I see TwinCAT has a XAE version for development and a XAR version for deploying to PCs in the field. XAR only has the runtime for machine control and XAE has a user interface for connecting to the device with the XAR. 

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

it is just like any other PLC. programming software resides on a development station (your laptop). you simply deploy project to a target PLC which has own firmware and license.

if you do not have physical PLC and wish to learn how to use TwinCat, you can use local runtime. it is an equivalent of a PLC but runs on your own machine. it too needs license but for local runtime, you simply create new temporary license yourself whenever needed.

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

Create an account or sign in to comment

You need to be a member in order to leave a comment

Create an account

Sign up for a new account in our community. It's easy!


Register a new account

Sign in

Already have an account? Sign in here.


Sign In Now
Sign in to follow this  
Followers 0