Object Properties Panel

The Object Properties Panel is by default shown on the right hand side of DataStudio. It shows all properties of the currently selected object. Objects can be selected in any panel in DataStudio and will be shown in the Object Properties Panel.

Alternatively, objects can be selected to be displayed in the Object Properties panel from the available DataStudio Displays by clicking the icon certificate view 32 icon, or selecting _Load in Property Panel from the context menu (shortcut: Ctrl+Shift+L).

This section describes the different sections of the panel.

Object Properties Panel
Figure 1. Object Properties Panel
The content of the Object Properties Panel heavily depends on the selected object type. This chapter describes the principles behind the object properties panel, not a description of each object type. For a detailed description of each object, please refer to the system documentation.

The header of the Object Properties panel always shows the object name, type (read only) and icon representation. In addition it contains a Refresh button which when pressed, will require all properties of the object currently shown in the panel from the Core server.

Object Properties Panel Header
Figure 2. Object Properties Panel Header

When the cursor is hovered over the header panel, a "+" appears beside the object icon. Clicking on this will open the advanced header properties.

Advanced header properties
Figure 3. Advanced header properties

The Advanced Header contains information about the object to give the user more detailed information about the history of the object and it’s current status. The table below explains the different fields.

The advanced header fields are populated by the system and are non-configurable by the user. They are accessible to read using the Lua Object Methods described in the Lua API section of the documentation.
Table 1. Advanced Header Fields
Header Field Description

Object ID

The unique Object ID used by the system internally to identify the object. This is particularly useful for Lua API and Web API developers.

Item Path

The path to the object in the respective Model Panel where it has been created. This is particularly useful Lua API and Web API developers.

Config Version

The Config version for the object indicates how many configuration changes the object has undergone since creation. The Config version incrementally rises each time object properties are changed and applied to the server.

Class Version

The class version of the object. The object is an instance of a particular class in the system. The classes are

Created

The timestamp for the creation of the object. The following field contains the name of the profile that created the object.

Modified

The timestamp for the last modification of the object. The following field contains the name of the profile that made the modification.

State

The user state flag group (or bitmask) for the object describing the state of the object. A more detailed explanation of the user state flag group and the different section meanings can be found in the System Documentation).

Faceplate

The Faceplate section of the Object Properties panel is available only, when the selected object’s type has a dynamic value property. The type of Faceplate displayed depends on the type of object selected. The Faceplate can be collapsed using the expand/collapse icon next to its section name. The available faceplate display options can be configured by clicking on the settings icon (icon settings32). The available display options will depend on the type of object selected, the types of faceplate display are described below.

Faceplate (for normal I/O Items)

Object Properties - Faceplate
Figure 4. Object Properties - Faceplate

The Faceplate gives a quick glance at the state of values coming from an I/O item. It contains many different elements that are each described in the following table.

Table 2. Faceplate Elements
Element View Meaning

Description

icon object description

Object description property

Display Properties

icon settings32

Open Display Properties window

Read/Write Info

icon rw

Signals if the object can be read from ® and/or written to (W). Allowed functions are highlighted white

Low EU Range

icon lower limit2

Signals if the object’s value violates the configured low EU range

High EU Range

icon upper limit2

Signals if the object’s value violates the configured high EU range

Low Limit

icon lower limit1

Signals if the object’s value violates the configured low limit

High Limit

icon upper limit1

Signals if the object’s value violates the configured high limit

OPC Quality

icon good

The current simple OPC quality in words and colors (good = green, uncertain = yellow, bad = red). The detailed quality can be read from the tooltip of this element.

Configured Limits

icon faceplate Limits2

Visualization of EU Range and limit properties.

Value

value

The current value of the object, formatted according to number format configuration. Double clicking on the value opens the Write Value dialog

EU

engineering units

Engineering unit

Timestamp

timestamp

Timestamp of current value, formatted according to format configuration

Age Gauge

icon event gauge

The age of the current value. Scale of the gauge depends on the acquisition rate. Blue bar is positive age, yellow bar is negative age. The latter can only be seen when there is time synchronization issue between Connector, Core and DataStudio client.

Faceplate (AE)

The alarms and events Faceplate is displayed when an event visualization object such as an Event Stream, Internal Event Stream or Script Events object is selected. Hovering the cursor over the Faceplate will bring up the full details of the alarm or event currently displayed in the Faceplate. Double clicking in the center portion of the faceplate will open an EventView display which will then be populated with events from the selected event object.

Object Properties - Faceplate (AE)
Figure 5. Object Properties - Faceplate (AE)
Table 3. Faceplate (AE) Elements
Element View Meaning

Display Properties

icon event settings32

Open Display Properties Panel.

Alarming Enabled

icon event circle32

If highlighted, indicates that alarming is enabled.

Alarm Active

icon event32

If highlighted, indicates that the alarm is active.

Alarm Acknowledged

icon event checkmark32

If highlighted, indicates that the alarm has been acknowledged.

Severity

icon event indicator32

Visualization of the severity of the alarm (1 - lowest, 1000 - highest).

Source and Timestamp

source and timestamp ae

The source of the alarm and the timestamp are displayed here.

Event Count

icon event count32

Indicates the number of event notifications available to be viewed in the faceplate, use the arrow buttons to scroll through the events.

Event Count Interval

icon event count interval32

Indicates the time period over which events will be stacked in the Faceplate to be available for viewing. The lightning icon fills up as it get towards the time indicated. Once full, the Faceplate events stack is emptied and the count starts again. Click to toggle between different stack times.

Open Filtered Event View

icon event filter tags

Different event Source (top row) or Category Names (bottom row) will appear here in the Faceplate. Clicking on these wil open an event view display, filtered to display only that source or category name.

Faceplate (KPI)

The KPI faceplate is displayed when a generic KPI item is selected in the KPI model. The KPI faceplate displays the name and current value of the selected KPI object alongside a trend line for the KPI. The faceplate is essentially identical to the Visual KPI display of KPI items, with the color changing in accordance with the limit settings and target values. The arrows and tick marks also give an indication of the value in relation to the limit settings.

Object Properties - Faceplate (KPI)
Figure 6. Object Properties - Faceplate (KPI)

Information Tabs

The different tabs on the Object Properties panel are only enabled when their function is active and their content applies to the currently selected object.

Object Properties Tabs
Figure 7. Object Properties Tabs

From left to right the following tabs are available:

The functions and capabilities of these tabs are discussed in the following sections.

Properties Tab

This tab shows the properties of the object currently selected. Since different object types have different properties, the content of this tab changes depending on the object type. Hovering the mouse cursor over different elements in the tab will display a tooltip giving a detailed description of the element.

Object Properties Tab Displaying Tooltip
Figure 8. Object Properties Tab Displaying Tooltip

Changing one of the available properties (for example changing a limit value) will cause blue highlighting to appear around that property to indicate that it has been changed. To confirm the property change and update the information with the Core server press the Apply button at the bottom of the Object Properties panel.

Changing Properties - Blue Highlighting and Apply Button
Figure 9. Changing Properties - Blue Highlighting and Apply Button

If changes are made to a property value and the changes were not confirmed by pressing the Apply button before moving to another object, the following warning message will be displayed.

Property Change Warning Message
Figure 10. Property Change Warning Message

Click Save to save the changes of the object currently loaded in the panel. Click Don’t Save discard the changes of the current object and to load the newly selected object. In this case all changes will be lost. Click Cancel to keep the unsaved changes, keeping the current object in the panel and not load an other object into the panel.

Security Tab

If the currently selected object has explicitly applied security references then the Security tab will be enabled and will show the list of profiles that were assigned.

Security Tab - Assigned Profiles List
Figure 11. Security Tab - Assigned Profiles List

The security permissions are indicated by the checkboxes which are List, Read, Write, Modify, Execute and Inheritable (please see here for more information about permissions). Security permissions and references cannot edited, added or deleted in the Security Tab. To do this it is necessary to open a Security Config display and make the changes there. To open a Security Config display from the Security Tab, either click on the icon settings32 icon or right click on one of the Profile names and select "Open in Security Config" from the context menu.

Security Tab - Open Security Config
Figure 12. Security Tab - Open Security Config

Please read the Working with System Security Jumpstart for more information about configuring system security and the Security Config page for information on changing permissions and references for existing Profiles.

Object References Tab

If the currently selected object has references to other objects or is itself referenced by other objects, then the Object References tab will be enabled. The references to other objects will be displayed in the Object References table. Here the Name of the reference, the Type of reference and the Item Path of the object being referenced will be indicated in the respective columns.

Object Reference Table
Figure 13. Object Reference Table

In the Object References tab of the object that is being referenced this will appear as a Referenced By table, indicating the path of the referencing object.

Referenced By Table
Figure 14. Referenced By Table

Right-clicking on any of the references in the Object References table will display a context menu (shown below). From here the referenced object can be added to a display (Add item to…), or a value written to the reference object (Write Values, this action is possible if the user has write privileges over the referenced object). The reference can also be removed from the Object References table (Remove reference), renamed (Rename) or the referenced object can be found and highlight in the model tree panel (Find reference). The name and the path of the referenced object can also be copied to the clipboard (Copy name, Copy path).

Object References Context Menu
Figure 15. Object References Context Menu

Performance Tab

If the currently selected object supports performance counters, this tab will be enabled and show a list of performance counter trends. Different objects display different performance counters related to the object’s function. An object’s performance counters are grouped into different categories. To only view counters from a particular category, select from the drop down menu in the top left of the tab.

Performance Counter Tab
Figure 16. Performance Counter Tab

Each performance counter trend shows 60 seconds of performance data. For each performance counter, the name and the current value are displayed on the top left and the currently shown performance range and unit on the right.

The range of a performance counter trend changes automatically based on the currently shown values.

An object’s performance counters are grouped into different categories to make browsing easier. To only view counters from a particular category, select from the drop down menu in the top left of the tab.

Performance Counter Categories
Figure 17. Performance Counter Categories

The size of the performance counters in the object properties panel can be adjusted by selecting from the drop down menu in the middle, at the top of the tab.

Performance Counter Size
Figure 18. Performance Counter Size

The performance counters, by default, show the real-time performance data and update every second. However the display can be configured to show different time period aggregates by selecting from the drop-down menu on the right, at the top of the tab.

Performance Counter Time Period Settings
Figure 19. Performance Counter Time Period Settings

Selecting the 'Minute' configuration for example, shows the performance data aggregated every minute for the last 60 minutes. The Max, Min and Average values for each minute are shown in the trend part of the display (the blue trend line indicates the Count number of values at each minute time point). Hovering the mouse over the performance counter will also display this data for the chosen time point.

Performance Counter - Minute
Figure 20. Performance Counter - Minute

The available performance counters for each object (including a description of their meaning) are listed in the Class page. Performance data for objects can be also archived by selecting the object, right-clicking and selecting Admin  Advanced Functions  Archive Performance from the context menu.

Archive Performance
Figure 21. Archive Performance

A series of objects are created in the I/O tree, archiving the performance data for each performance counter.

Objects Archiving Performance Data
Figure 22. Objects Archiving Performance Data

Instance Class Diagram Tab

The Instance Class Diagram tab shows a hierarchical representation of the structure of the currently selected object in terms of its properties and sub-properties. The diagrams can be large and complex so the settings can be altered to assist with viewing the diagram.

Instance Class Diagram Tab
Figure 23. Instance Class Diagram Tab

The icons in the top right of the Instance Class Diagram tab can be used to copy, refresh and configure the diagram.

Table 4. Instance Class Diagram Tab Icon Function
Element View Meaning

Copy Mode

icon instant class copy

Toggles the copy mode for right mouse click to on or off. When on, holding down the right mouse button and dragging over a desired area of the instance class diagram will copy said area to the clipboard

Refresh

icon refresh 02

Enforces a refreshing of the diagram

Options

icon settings

Toggles to show or hide the display settings and options for the instance class diagram

Audit Trail Tab

If the Audit Trail is configured then this tab will be enabled and will show a table containing a record of changes made to the object. By default, this tab shows three columns: Timestamp, From Config Version and Type. Additional columns can be configured as required using icon select column 32. The drop-down menu in each column can be used to filter records.

Audit Trail Tab
Figure 24. Audit Trail Tab

The footer of the Audit Trail tab contains fields containing information about the returned records and the time a query was made. These fields are described below.

Table 5. Audit Trail Tab Footer Fields
Field Description

Returned Time

Time range of returned data (timestamps of the first and last records returned in the query)

Query Time

Time that the query was made

Records

Number of records returned in the query

Right-clicking on any entry in the table will display a context menu which can be used to display the change record in the JSON Viewer (JSON Viewer) and to open the content of the Audit Trail tab into a more detailed Audit Trail Display (Open in Audit Trail). For changes that involve configuring the input of the object, such as Config Change and External Write, this context menu can also be used for comparisons to current and previous versions of the object (Compare with current version/Compare with previous version).

Audit Trail Tab with Context Menu
Figure 25. Audit Trail Tab with Context Menu

The maximum number of records displayed at once in the Audit Trail tab can be configured in the General Settings (shortcut: F10); the default value is 100. If the number of records exceeds the maximum value set, click Request more > to view them.

Audit Trail Tab - Request More Records
Figure 26. Audit Trail Tab - Request More Records

Lua Instance Tab

For objects which are hosting Lua scripts, the Lua Instance tab provides performance information on the specific Lua instance. To see performance information for all Lua instances click on the icon right of the Lua Instance Id field to open the Lua Instance Viewer display.

Lua Instance Tab
Figure 27. Lua Instance Tab

The refresh interval and warning limits for CPU and memory usage for the Lua Instance tab can be configured in Options  General Settings  Lua Instance Viewer of the System Menu.

Writing Values in the Object Properties Panel

Values can be written to I/O panel objects that have a dynamic value property (for example, I/O items, Data Holders, GenItems and Action Items) using the Faceplate in the Object Properties panel. To do this, first select the item in the I/O panel to display the Faceplate for the Item (including its current value) in the Object Properties panel.

Writing Values to Object - Faceplate
Figure 28. Writing Values to Object - Faceplate

Double-clicking anywhere within the Faceplate will open the Write Value dialog for the selected object.

Write Values Dialog Box
Figure 29. Write Values Dialog Box

The Write Value dialog opens and highlights the value field (containing the current item value). To write a new value to the object, chose the data type of the new value from the drop-down menu, then enter the new value into the Value field and click Write.

Write Values Dialog - Data Types
Figure 30. Write Values Dialog - Data Types
You cannot enter a null value in the Write Values dialog box, however null values can be written to objects using the SCI or Lua scripting. See the SCI and Lua scripting Chapters for more details about writing values to objects using these interfaces.

When entering a "String" data type, click on the Editor button to open the text editor box. Here you can enter larger blocks of text including line breaks (use Ctrl+Alt+Enter to enter carriage returns in the editor).

Write Values Dialog - Text Editor
Figure 31. Write Values Dialog - Text Editor

Writing Array Values

Tick the "Array" checkbox to write values as an array. The Value field contains a guide for how array values should be entered, in square brackets, with each element of the array separated by a "|" character.

Write Values Dialog - Array
Figure 32. Write Values Dialog - Array

Null values can be written to elements in the array by either entering "|" twice (the null value being between the "|" characters) or by entering <null> as one of the elements.

Write Array Values - Entering null Values
Figure 33. Write Array Values - Entering null Values

An empty array of the type "[]" cannot be written as a value, however an array with two null elements can be written. For example "[|]" or [<null>|<null>].

Writing Null Values to an Array
Figure 34. Writing Null Values to an Array
Writing null values to arrays is only available in v1.20 and above.

Generator Options

Clicking on the arrow next to "Generator" expands the options for generating a number using the sawtooth or sinewave functions. Press the "Play" arrow to start the generation then "Pause" to stop. Closing the Write Values dialog will then write that value to the object.

Write Values Dialog - Generator
Figure 35. Write Values Dialog - Generator

Parameter - OPC Write Options

If writing to an I/O item in an OPC server namespace, the "Parameter" options allow you to choose the OPC Write options. Clicking the arrow next to "Parameter" expands the options.

Parameter Options in the Write Dialog
Figure 36. Parameter Options in the Write Dialog

Different OPC write modes can be selected and the delay between collecting writes configured. There is also the option to create an audit for the writes in the Session Log. Further information describing these configuration options in more detail can be found here.

JSON Viewer

Right-clicking on the faceplate will display the context menu from where you can copy the current value (shortcut: Ctrl+C), copy the selected object’s property ID or display the current object value in the JSON viewer (shortcut: Ctrl+Alt+J). The JSON viewer allows the user to visualize the structure of a JSON string as a tree structure, as displayed in the left hand panel of the Viewer window. The different fields of the JSON document can be selected here and viewed in the main window.

There is also the option to display JSON string as a formatted document in a script editor by clicking on the {} icon in the menu bar to display the raw JSON.

If the faceplate value changes while the JSON viewer is open, the viewer can be refreshed by clicking on the "refresh" icon in the menu bar.

Special Keys

The JSON Viewer supports specific keys in the JSON object which affect how data is displayed in the JSON Object tree.

  • For arrays the JSON Object tree on the left hand side generally shows array elements with their index number. If such an element is an object containing a key/value pair where the key is called 'ID' or 'EntryID', the index number in the JSON tree is replaced by the value corresponding to this key.

  • For objects which contain '$' or '$date' as a key, the value corresponding to this key will be displayed as the value of the parent object in the JSON Object tree. In this case, other key/value pairs are not shown in the JSON Object tree.