What is FactoryTalk? What is FactoryTalk viewpoint and security?
FactoryTalk services platform is a suite of services developed by Rockwell Software. It includes Alarm and Events, Activation, Security, Audit, Directory, and Live Data. FactoryTalk is not a product that can be purchased as a standalone software package. FactoryTalk is embedded in most of the products from Rockwell Software; that is, it is the prefix to the majority of the Rockwell Software’s products.
To better understand each component of FactoryTalk services, here is a brief description to give more of an understanding of the proficiencies of each module.
- Alarm and Events
Provides both device-based and server-based process control alarm server
Provides a safe software-based system for activating the products of Rockwell Software along with managing software activations
Provides the users with a range of security services that are pre-installed in the FactoryTalk directory. The user groups and users are identical when it comes to managing them in the active directory. Moreover, they can be linked to the active directory as well. This functionality enables the users with centralized authentication and access control resulting in ‘single-user sign in’ when using FactoryTalk enabled products and services.
It collects messages documented by the user regarding the management, design, and operation of production. It works as a configuration management tool and a process control system asset for smooth operations.
The directory allows the products to share a standard address book that locates and provides access to factory-floor resources that includes graphic displays, tags, roles, and users. Using the FactoryTalk Administrative Console application, the directory can be managed.
- Live Data
It provides with real-time data between the servers and clients. That is, it will show the connection between the PLC and the HMI server, or between a PLC and FactoryTalk Historian SE. The live data server of FactoryTalk is for Rockwell Automaton devices that allow to manage the link between OPC-DA servers and clients for non-Rockwell Automation devices.
What is FactoryTalk Viewpoint?
FactoryTalk Viewpoint is an extension to the PanelView Plus and the View Site Edition, which adds web server features to the FactoryTalk View project.
When Viewpoint was first implemented by Rockwell, they did so as a Silverlight browser plugin. That means FactoryTalk Viewpoint is limited to Windows devices including tablets.
Its updated version was released in 2017 that went from being a Microsoft application to an HTML 5 application. The update improved FactoryTalk Viewpoint’s compatibility with devices, operating systems, and browsers that do not support Microsoft Silverlight.
However, people using FactoryTalk Viewpoint has complained about the software being slow.
What is FactoryTalk security?
FactoryTalk security is a primary source of authentication and authorization controls. Instead of enforcing the same controls on each system with the RSLogix application, the users are entered and managed in one location.
Moreover, the authorization is a bit coarse, meaning it can be based on multiple actions individually aligned for each system. What makes things easier is that the application supports groups for role-based access control; thus, not everybody can access the system without mentioning the role.
FactoryTalk security allows users to access the application locally or using proxy authentication. In case, if the users have arranged a separate domain, they can leverage that existing infrastructure.