Using the SCADALink IP100 Terminal Server’s Integrated Protocol Analyzer for SCADA Communications Troubleshooting

The SCADALink IP100 has Protocol Monitoring function that can used to monitor traffic on any of its serial ports. This can be invaluable for diagnosing remote SCADA communications problems.

This feature can be valuable for remote SCADA applications as analysis can be done performed both locally and remotely. The protocol analyzer feature on IP100 is useful in situations where:

  • SCADA Host does not have an easy to use protocol analyzer utility
  • User does not have access to the SCADA Host
  • The Polling Master is a RTU or PLC without a protocol analyzer utility.
  • The User does not have a Protocol Analyzer.

Protocol Analyzer Access Via IP100 GUI

Access to the Protocol Analyzer function for the IP100 is its GUI Software connected serially or via LAN. Local access would can via RS232 on a free IP100 port, or via Ethernet. Remote access would be via LAN.


IP100 Used in Troubleshooting MAS SCADA Communications

The IP100 can be accessed both locally (A2) and remotely (A1).

IP100 Used in Troubleshooting MAS SCADA Communications

IP100 Protocol Monitor

Transmit and Receive Messages streams are timestamped on the Protocol Monitor window. The use of timestamps combined with a HEX display of the protocol can help user diagnose problems including:

  • Extra Characters in the Message (typically beginning or end)
  • Short Messages
  • Broken Messages
  • Inadequate Poll Delay Time
  • Excessive Noise on the Radio Channel
  • Improper Responses

Protocol Log File

The IP100 GUI can save the protocol stream to a file for detailed offline analysis.

Protocol Traffic on Serial Port from LAN and Serial Sources

When used as a IP Port Server, the IP100 can be used to diagnose traffic on the output serial port. Connected in Serial Mux Mode the IP100 can be used to diagnose data traffic from a serial master.

Protocol Monitor

The IP100 Protocol analyzer can be used to helps diagnose communications problems on any SCADA Protocol.

Multiplexer (Mux)  Mode Used for Injecting Test Messages

IP100 - Multiplexer (Mux) Mode Used for Injecting Test Messages

The IP100 MUX and serial MUX modes can be used to perform diagnostics and troubleshooting. The user can use the IP Mux or the Serial Mux mode to inject test polls into the serial network without disconnection of the polling master. This is achieved by configuring IP MUXing to the port that is being tested. In the IP Mux Mode, the user would configure a IP socket on another port number that multiplexes to this serial port to allow test communications from a master simulator or another SCADA host. The MUX port can use a different port number, ensuring that it is for use by test application. The Serial Mux can be configured to so that a local serial port on the IP100 can used to Mux to the port in test.

Temporary Disconnection of  Master

The IP100 can be configured  to disconnect Master Polling by disabling the IP connection or serial connection used by the Master, so that test messages can be sent to the slave network without other traffic during troubleshooting.

Use of IP100 as a SCADA Protocol Analyzer

The versatility of the IP100 has prompted SCADALink customers to purchase the IP100 to use as protocol analyzer to diagnose troublesome intermittent SCADA communications problems. This is especially the case for remote difficult to access oil and gas sites.

Protocol Analyzer in SCADALink IP100 Terminal Server Proves Invaluable for Remote SCADA Communications Troubleshooting

SCADA Communications problems in Oil and Gas can be difficult to find and troubleshoot due to the remoteness and the large number of sites. The integrated Protocol Analyzer function in the SCADAlink IP100 Terminal Server has proven  invaluable in diagnosing  problems caused by improper timing, noise, and low power. The IP100 allows remote view of protocol traffic and the ability to perform remote testing.



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