Mervis IDE

Mervis IDE (integrated development environment) is the cornerstone of the Mervis platform. It allows you to:

  • Connect to PLCs, even remotely over the internet
  • Manage the configuration of PLCs including updates of Mervis RT
  • Create programs in FBD or ST languages according to IEC61131-3 standard
  • Create libraries of functions and Modbus devices to easily reuse them in another projects
  • Build web-based HMIs (human-machine interfaces)
  • Create projects for Mervis SCADA - environment for remote installations management
  • Detect connected 1-Wire sensors and Unipi Extensions
  • Upload and debug the solutions to PLCs running Mervis RT
  • … and many more

The project in Mervis IDE is called a solution. The solution consists of connection parameters to your PLCs, their configuration, programs, libraries and HMI interfaces.

On the next screenshot, you can see a typical workspace of a project in Mervis IDE

In the Left panel, called Solution, you can see the expanded tree for PLC, containg a list of configured communication channels (1-Wire, Modbus) and connected devices. In the Executable Projects you will have all your programs and function libraries. In the HMI Projects you can see a list of HMI interfaces.

In the Main window, you can see a FBD program while in the debugging mode. The left column of the programming workspace contains inputs of the program. In the middle section, you can place function blocks (FBs), which enclose a certain functionality. The right column contains outputs of the program. As stated above, the program is in the debugging mode, which allows us to check the current values of inputs, outputs and variables in the PLC as well as override their values. Those values are shown in small grey boxes right next to the input/output. The debugging mode also allows you to chart the actual values, as you can see in the section under the Main window.

The Properties panel on the right contains a complete list of all properties for the selected object. Right now, it shows parameters for office_thermometer_temperature input.

On the next screenshot, you can see interface used to build the HMI.

In the Left panel, you can see a list of graphical elements, you can use for building your interface. The Main window shows a workspace for the actual HMI interface. In the Properties panel you can see properties of the selected text element.

Let's move to a description of Mervis IDE's individual components. We will refer to those parts frequently in other tutorials.

On the upper edge of the window, a list of icons is placed, called Ribbon. Icons change depending on the part of the IDE you are currently using.

In the middle of the screen is a workspace called Main window, containing a number of sub-panels that are displayed as tabs on the main window's upper edge. That allows you to close any subpanel at any time and return to it simply by clicking its tab. Right now, the only visible tab is Variable Browser.

Left Panel is located at the screen's left edge. This panel also features a list of tabs - compared to the main window the tabs are placed at the bottom edge. This tabs cannot be removed and are named: Project, FUPLA Box Explorer, HMI Gadget Explorer, Object List and Debug - PrioQueue. Most of the time you will use Project tab visible here:

On the right side, you can see the Properties panel. This panel displays all available properties of the currently selected object, be it a controller, a channel, Modbus device, input/output or anything else. As nothing is selected right now the panel is empty.

Another important part of Mervis IDE is placed below the main window - in this tutorial, we will call it Lower panel. It also features a lot of fixed tabs placed on its bottom edge. It is worth mentioning the Results and Output tabsused, for example, for compilation control, Chart for graphing the values of variables and also the Port monitor tab for viewing communication on a given channel.

The last, but also very important component is the Status Bar. Many actions in Mervis IDE do not display any messages upon their finish and their outputs are displayed only in the status bar. In such cases, the bar displays Save succeeded message referring to a successful saving of the project.