How to avoid Library Problems with Maple Systems HMI
I've been using Maple Systems HMI screens for about a month now. I am starting to grow fond of the screens and their features for no more than what we use them in our typical applications. Generally we need an HMI screen to connect to a single PLC such as an Allen Bradley Micrologix 1000 or 1500.
We generally setup a DF1 connection from the HMI to the PLC when we use them and generally design a small application that gives the operator manual functions. We might also design some adjustments in some timers and reset some part counters. So really there is not a need for us to use anything much fancier.
What I like most about the screen is there are so many more objects and animations that you can design using a Maple Systems than say a typical Panelview 550 or 300.
However, I started running into some problems when I was sending files to my customers, or end users of the machinery. When I would e-mail project files to my customers, they would get library errors or can't find library files. Seems annoying enough I thought at first so I started e-mailing them my own library files that EasyBuilder said it was missing. EasyBuilder is the name of the software used to design your HMI screens supplied by Maple Systems. This method of e-mailing my library files to the customer worked, but they had to attached the library files one by one in the project.
Your probably going to laugh at me, but I figured I would make this an article cause the solution seems simple enough and "HIDDEN" that you may not even know that it ever existed. That is what happened to me, unless someone told you about the feature built-in to EasyBuilder. I e-mailed support at Maple System and they told me, "Hey did you know etc etc etc"... So strangely enough, check this out.
Maple Systems calls this compressing your project when you are ready to share your project with your end user. To get to the compression feature, you need to make sure that when you open EasyBuilder that you CLOSE any project that might be open. You should not have any project windows or HMI screens open.
When you do this, this will show a new menu at the top called "Tool". The "Tools" menu was always there when you are developing your project, but the menus inside are different. Also notice that it says "TOOL" and not "TOOLS" now. You'll find a new "Compress..." choice inside the Tool menu. Choose compress, then select your normal project by browsing to your project file.
Now you can e-mail the compressed version of your project which will include all the library files you used to build your project. Of course let your end user know how to get to the hidden menu so they can uncompress your compressed project using the "Uncompress" feature of EasyBuilder.