SOURCE: Software Toolbox

Software Toolbox

July 25, 2011 10:15 ET

Software Toolbox Enhances Connectivity Software

TOP Server Features Media-Level Redundancy and Device Scan Rate Modes; New Drivers and Functionality Enhancements

CHARLOTTE, NC--(Marketwire - Jul 25, 2011) - Software Toolbox® today announced the release of TOP Server Version 5.6, its OPC and native HMI device connectivity software application. Powered by Kepware, TOP Server 5.6 delivers enhancements to the main server and more than 29 drivers and plug-ins.

TOP Server 5.6 introduces media-level redundancy functionality for increased device availability in mission-critical situations or when the utmost reliability is essential. There are two basic types of redundancy available. Communications path redundancy (CPR) establishes redundant physical connections to the same device, such as having both an Ethernet and serial connection to the same device. Device pair redundancy (DPR) enables running two identical devices with the same logic as a redundant pair, allowing failover in the event that one of the devices becomes disabled. Both types of redundancy can be used in conjunction to provide the greatest level of reliability. This level of redundancy complements and enhances the existing OPC server-level redundancy available through the Redundancy Master product option, providing redundancy at all points of failure.

"Media-level redundancy is functionality that many users consider vital to the success of their operations," said Kevin Rutherford, brand manager at Software Toolbox. "In critical operational situations where downtime means massive losses for a company, maintaining operations consistently is crucial to success. Enabling redundancy at multiple levels increases the probability that a device failure will not negatively impact business operations while the device issue is resolved."

The Version 5.6 release also includes the addition of new device-level scan rate modes, allowing greater control of the frequency with which devices are being polled. By default, TOP Server Version 5.6 will respect the scan rate specified by the client application. Two new modes are also available to override the client scan rate. The first option specifies a scan rate floor which restricts TOP Server to polling no faster than the specified floor. The second option fixes the scan rate at a specified level. This is extremely useful in situations where a user needs to restrict the frequency of polls to field devices.

TOP Server Version 5.6 also introduces the first phase of the Weatherford 8500 Serial Driver for connectivity to Weatherford rod pump controllers, which are widely used in the oil and gas industry. Additional device model support will be added in the second phase for the driver, to be released later this year in TOP Server Version 5.7.

With TOP Server 5.6, Software Toolbox maintains its continuous improvement vision through new OPC DA ProgID redirect functionality. This feature allows users to map any OPC ProgID to TOP Server Version 5.6 for use in OPC DA client applications, increasing client flexibility. In addition, the Version 5.6 release now includes full support for Hyper-V virtualization.

Additional improvements in TOP Server Version 5.6 include:

TOP Server 5.6 will be available for download or as an upgrade starting July 25, 2011 for users with active support and maintenance contracts at

NOTE TO EDITORS: High-resolution 300dpi graphics for TOP Server Version 5.6 are available for download at the following link:

Since 1996, Software Toolbox has been an industry source for industrial automation software, from project conception to completion. The company has served more than 10,000 clients in 110 countries helping them find, evaluate, purchase and support automation software solutions. These solutions include OPC servers, clients, development toolkits, HMI/SCADA add-ins/enhancements, and ActiveX and .NET development tools for Visual Studio C#/VB/C++. Software Toolbox works with its clients in all phases of projects to help them find and determine the right tools to use and to support overall project objectives and maximize their industrial software results.


The Software Toolbox name is a registered trademark of Software Toolbox, Inc. All Rights Reserved Worldwide.

Contact Information

  • Media/Analyst Contact:

    John Weber
    Software Toolbox, Inc.
    704-849-2773, ext. 1122
    Email Contact