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Physical Network

VIMNet Explorer listens on the network for decommissioned VIMs, and therefore must know which network card on the PC is connected to the VIM network. When VIMNet Explorer is started for the first time, it will prompt the user to select one of the network cards on the system to use as the VIM network (Figure 2).

This network card can be changed at any time by right-clicking on the Physical Network in the main VIMNet Explorer window (Figure 1) and selecting Properties. The physical network displays all VIMs on the local networks. The detected VIMs are sorted into three categories: Decommissioned, Simulation, and I/O.

Figure 1 - Physical Network Properties Dialog

Physical Network Properties

Figure 2 - Select VIM network interface card

Available NIC

This is a list of all IP addresses on the local computer. Selecting an IP address from the list will update the NIC Subnet mask and Network Card Details, further identifying the selected network card. If the desired network card is not in the list, click the Refresh button to have VIMNet Explorer look for additional network cards. Once the correct network card is identified, click the Add button to move the selected network card to the Used Addresses list.

NIC Subnet Mask

This is the configured subnet mask of the network card selected from the Available NIC list. In most situations this value can be left as default so that VIMNet Explorer and the operating system use the same IP subnet. For the situations where VIMNet Explorer needs to use a different IP subnet, the Manual Set check box can be set, which enables editing of the subnet mask.

Refresh

This button causes VIMNet Explorer to re-discover all the network cards on the local computer. The Available NIC list is updated with the results of that search.

Add

This button places the selected network card from the Available NIC list in the Used Addresses list.

Network Card Details

The text between the NIC Subnet Mask and the Used Addresses list shows additional details about the network card selected from the Available NIC list. This information should be used to verify that the correct network card has been selected.

Used Addresses

This lists all the network cards on the system that VIMNet Explorer will use for communicating with the VIMs. Selecting an IP address from Available NIC and clicking Add will place new network cards in the list. Selecting an IP address from this list and clicking Delete will remove it from the list.

All network cards in the list will be available for communications with the VIMs. By default VIMNet Explorer will pick the network card that is on the same subnet as the VIM first. If the VIM is not on any of the attached subnets and Gateway Addressing is enabled, VIMNet Explorer will use the default router to communicate with the VIM. The default router need not be on one of the subnets in this list.

Since decommissioned VIMs do not have IP addresses, VIMNet Explorer will search all listed subnets for new VIMs. VIMNet Explorer will be unable to locate decommissioned VIMs that are not on one of the locally attached subnets. Any located VIMs will appear in the Decommissioned List.

Gateway Addressing Enabled

When enabled, this checkbox allows VIMNet Explorer to use the operating system's IP routing table to communicate with VIMs that are not connected to any of the local subnets. When this checkbox is disabled, all VIMs outside the local subnets are not accessible by VIMNet Explorer. This feature can only be used to work with commissioned VIMs. Any VIM without an IP address cannot be accessed through an IP router.

Note: VIMNet Explorer cannot be used to commission or decommission VIMs that are not on a local subnet, even if Gateway Addressing is enabled.

Status Update Timeout

The VIM periodically checks the status of all the commissioned VIMs in the loaded vio file. If one of them does not respond to the status update message within this timeout window, the VIM is considered to be offline. Offline VIMs are makred with a red "X".

Note: A VIM can operate without VIMNet Explorer once it is commissioned and a configuration is uploaded. DeltaV Diagnostics should be used to determine the true state of the field communications.