Experience Upgrading to 800xA FP4 ?
I'm currently in the planning stages of an upgrade from 800xA Version 5.1 Rev A to FP4.
The system currently runs on Windows 32Bit (Server 2008 and Win7). Memory usage is quite high, but within what I'd expect for a system of this size - ie about 1GB for the Aspect Directory on the Aspect Servers and about 600MB for the OPC Server on the Connectivity servers. All Servers are virtualised. Overall system erformance is OK, but the graphics display exchange time is slow. The slowest graphic has over 4000 OPC items and takes 10 to 12 seconds to load. Typical graphics have up to 2000 items and load in around 4 seconds.
We are considering upgrading from Win32 to Win 64 Bit at the same time as upgrading to Feature Pack 4. I'm aware that this will require a complete OS re-installation on all servers and clients and a rebuild of the Aspect System. Its a substantial amount of work.
Has anyone got experience of running 800xA on Win64 bit ?
Has anyone done an upgrade of 800xA from x86 to Win 64bit ?
Is it worth the effort of upgrading ?
Will the site get any benefit in display exchange times ?
What are the other real benefits of running 800xA on 64Bit Windows if it runs OK on 32bit?
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I don't foresee any improvment in display exchange performance by upgrading to x64 from x86.
You haven't specified what controller type and application library your system is running. As a comparison I can mention that AC800 Connect is specified to about 1 second callup time per 800 OPC items, i.e. an AC800 process graphic display with 4000 items should take about 5 seconds to call up after it has been cached (first callup will take longer time since it does not have any caching info available).
Performance can also be limited by a complex graphic design or by operating the workplace above 1500 MB of virtual memory (where memory allocation performance will deteriorate). Note: You must use the Windows Performance Monitor (NOT Task Manager) to measure a true value of Virtual Bytes.
When using thin clients and terminal servers, be sure to allocate at least one core per workplace and do not run more than 4-5 clients per terminal server. The latest HP DL 380 G8 servers comes with power saving settings enabled in BIOS - we have learned that disabling the powersavings in BIOS can have large positive effects on display exchange performance if the terminal server is running on this hardware.
For sure the guest operating system will be able to handle more memory than 3.5 GB when running x64, but most applications in the x64 build of 800xA have not been compiled with the large address aware flag, hence they will still be limited to the 2 GB virtual memory boundary as it is in x86.
I suggest that you contact your regional ABB support center for assistance with investigating the poor display exchange performance and planning & executing the upgrade to x64. There may be some new and so far undocumented methods available which will spare you from performing the upgrade with a completely shut down control system.
Yes Upgrading to 64 bit will improve the memory performance and it is worth the effort involved.
But I didnt get why you have choosen FP4 and not RevC for updating your system to 64 bit? Do you require any of the new features of Feature Pack? (Remember all features are licenced and not free). If yes, then go for FP4 or-else RevC is just fine.
And one more practical reason for upgrading to 64 bit now (if you have a chance) is that 32-bit supports 4GB RAM only where as 64 bit can support more.
Also Microsoft is slowing toward x64 bit architecture and x86 if not now may be soon going to be a legacy So your future upgrades will be easier.
Yes of course Memory point of view , 64 bit will give better performanc than 32 bit system.
Upgrade cannot be done online, as you need to OS reinstallation. Display exchange time you can find better imrpovement , however loading display with 4000 items is too much that is not ideal one. i would suggest to split the display items into two graphics displays.
As per Purna's suggstion if you need any of new feature of FP4 go with FP4 otherwise you can install Rev C 64 bit, that is more than sufficient for your performance issue.
If you have additional software running check if it is also supporting 64bit. In our systems we stay on 32bit because the history solution we use in parts only run on 32bit.
All your servers are virtual so you don't have to worry about drivers for 64 bit, this could sometimes a challenge with older hardware. Check this if you reuse your client machines.
If you don't need features from FP4 I would also suggest to use Rev.C only. There are minor problems with NLS in FP4. (I don't know if you need NLS.)
By the way, you always install Rev.C first and then you perform an update to FP4.
Is the graphics callup time the same on a client and on a aspect server? Is it different if you start the workplace manually?