SOFTWARE/HARDWARE: AutomationDirect has recently cut the price of its Think & Do programming software for their WinPLC processor from $695 to free. Before this price cut, the lowest cost option for programming the WinPLC processor with Think & Do was purchase of a Think & Do WinPLC-only programming package for $695. Now, customers can download the Think & Do v8.04 Keyless Development Demo package for PC-based control for free. The free Demo is offered as a download only, but it includes the same development software that customers receive when they purchase the full Think & Do development package for $1,895.
Think & Do consists of a development package that runs on a PC and one or more runtime keys that reside on real-time industrial controller application targets. The free Think & Do Demo package has no limits when it comes to development, only in terms of runtime targets. These limits don’t affect the WinPLC as it comes pre-loaded with Windows CE and Think & Do runtime software. This means that customers can download the Think & Do v8.04 Keyless Development Demo package for free, create software applications with Think & Do, and download these applications to an unlimited number of WinPLC targets.
For real-time industrial controller targets not pre-loaded with Think & Do runtime software, the Development Demo package has certain runtime limits. Runtime use is restricted to unlimited sessions up to 30 minutes each for 30 days. These sessions allow ample time for testing and proof of concept, but aren’t intended for use in actual real-time industrial control applications. The Demo package also doesn’t include the software CD, the Quick Start Guide and the USB Runtime hardware key supplied with the $1,895 Think & Do v8.04 Development package.
The Think & Do v8.04 Keyless Development Demo package features Flow Chart programming, an integrated HMI creator, advanced data manipulation and data exchange with business applications such as from an ERP systems and spreadsheets. Also included are an SQL database interface, and an OPC client and server. The software comes with a CD-ROM, a USB hardware runtime key and a QuickStart guide. System requirements are the Windows 2000, XP or Vista operating system running on a Pentium IV processor with at least 256MB RAM and 750MB hard disk space. The development system must also include a CD-ROM drive, an Ethernet adapter, a 64MB or higher video adapter and minimum 800×600 monitor resolution.
The WinPLC with Think & Do Runtime is a 100 MHz WinPLC processor module pre-loaded with Windows CE and Think & Do runtime software. The WinPLC plugs into the CPU slot of any DL205 base. It includes 8 Mbyte flash ROM, 8 Mbyte RAM, a built-in Ethernet port and a serial port.
-Edited by Kelsey Anderson