New version control, backup strategies for industrial automation

Webcast on industrial automation and PLC programming tools demonstrates how efficiency and quality can increase. Includes software demo.

By Darren Henry and Vaughn Varma December 6, 2022
Courtesy: Copia


Learning Objectives

  • DevOps workflows are being used for industrial automation. Learn why.
  • Control teams can work more effectively with new software tools.
  • Productivity and quality can improve by applying modern software tools to automation and PLC programming.

Automation version control, backup insights

  • Workflow practices adopted for software development and IT operations should be applied more widely to improve efficiency in PLC and automation programming.
  • Control teams should use modern software, browser-based tools, to better control and streamline industrial automation programming workflows.

DevOps workflows (workflow practices adopted for software development and IT operations) have transformed software development and are now being applied to industrial automation, including for version control and backups for code development in programmable logic controllers (PLCs), programmable automation controllers (PACs) and industrial PCs (IPCs), among others. Control teams can now collaborate, reuse code, and review program changes more effectively using browser-based tools. [subhead]How to streamline industrial automation programming workflows

A Control Engineering webcast on Dec. 7 (archived for a year) is designed to help viewers better understand how to take control and streamline industrial automation programming workflows, increase productivity, efficiency and quality across an organization. This can help with PLCs and other industrial controller versioning and backups from Rockwell Automation, Siemens and Beckhoff along with other vendor PLCs that use the CODESYS programming platform.

Information below previews some of the information in the webcast, “New Version Control and Backup Strategies for Industrial Automation.”

An audience poll question, for those listening live, asks “How are you currently managing version of your PLC files?”

Removing painful manual steps in automation, PLC programming

The webcast explains most software development teams use DevOps practices to remove painful manual steps, develop code quickly, reduce downtime and improve operational efficiency. Such practices help developers understand the current state of code and its evolution. Code review, reuse and collaboration are faster and more efficient. Productivity increases with team size.

If that doesn’t sound like how things happen at your company, there’s a reason.

Many industrial automation tools haven’t kept pace with traditional software development. Archive folder workflow has disadvantages, such as limited context. Plant floor operational actions also can add complexity and result in lost visibility.

The webcast also explains more about how git-based strategies improve PLC code development. A demonstration provides examples showing the power of git when it comes to automation and PLC programming.

Darren Henry is vice president of marketing; Vaughn Varma is technical marketing manager, Copia. Edited by Mark T. Hoske, content manager, Control Engineering, CFE Media,

KEYWORDS: Industrial automation programming workflow, PLC programming efficiency


Have your programming workflow tools improved along with your automation?

Author Bio: Darren Henry is vice president of marketing and Vaughn Varma is technical marketing manager, both with Copia.