How to Import Variables Direct from EXCEL to GE Cimplicty ME
I figured I would get a jump start on writing this article about GE Cimplicty Machine Edition software. This was my first project to use the new software so I am excited to share with you my first experience article which will come later when I am finished with my current project. In the mean time, I have discovered a speedy tip that I think warrants an article all by itself.
I always look for ways to speed up the process of programming a PLC. Entering tags and descriptions into the PLC is the last thing I want to do. As usual I turn to EXCEL when I need to mass import variables using some sort of CVS formatted EXCEL file then using the import function of the software to suck in all those variables. But if your like me, you create tons of bits and registers variables on the fly sometimes, and it can get rather cumbersome to keep a CVS sheet up to date so you can create the variables in EXCEL then CVS import them into your program.
Every now and then you'll find some PLC software supports a direct copy and paste between applications. If you remember VersaPro had a variable table down at the bottom of your program. You could easily copy a row in the variable table then paste it into EXCEL to alter it or even create many new variables using EXCEL's auto fill feature. Once created into EXCEL, you could copy and paste the rows directly into VersaPro's variable table without having to do any type of an import of CVS files. Of course, I view this as an invaluable speed tool for folks like me who are trying to find as many ways as possible to cut down on engineering time spent to programming a PLC.
I was happy to learn that Cimplicty Machine Edition support this same type of copy and paste, but might not be immediately noticeable, so I wanted to take some time and give it some glory. The first thing you'll need to do is have your variables formatted so that they can be copied from EXCEL directly into CME. The best thing to do if you don't have a template to follow is copy an existing variable. Make sure you copy and paste all types of variables. Get a Boolean one, timer register, a plain single word register, etc... Now paste the variables one at a time in an EXCEL row. Notice how the flags (columns) are different for each one. Try to keep them straight as you create new ones.
Once you've created new ones in EXCEL by using either the auto fill feature or just plan copy and paste, you can then highlight the whole row or row(s) in EXCEL, then paste your variables directly into CME. Click on the variable tab and right click anywhere in a blank space that will not highlight a variable, and then click on paste. Check the import tab in the message box to make sure your variable was imported without any problems. Make sure you paste your variable to the correct target.
I have uploaded the on going template sheet I started on my first project here:
I also uploaded a video capture of my desktop for your reference.
Please see my Desktop Video Capture of this Tutorial
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