In general, a network of ConveyLinx modules must be Auto-Configured before they can work together in ZPA mode or exchange any data with each other when in PLC I/O mode. The typical method is to utilize the Install Button (on ERSC family modules) or EasyRoll (for ConveyLinx-Ai Family and ConveyLinx-ECO). When you use Siemens S7 PLCs and TIA Portal or Step 7 Manager, you can have the ConveyLinx modules automatically configured from the PLC based upon the topology you create at design time in your Siemens PLC programming environment.

Separate ConveyLinx Auto-Configuration

When using this method, the configuration of a module or group of modules is initiated with the Install Button or EasyRoll software. All of the module parameters such as motor modes (ECO/BOOST etc.), module mode (PLC/ZPA), inter-module connections, Merger zone, IP addresses and all other general parameters are assigned during the Auto-Configuration procedure. The Profinet name is formed by the module during the Auto-Configuration procedure as well. In order write your program in the PLC, you will need to know the exact Profinet name of each module you wish to connect and you do not have the flexibility to change these names.

Advantages of Separate ConveyLinx Auto-Configuration

* Changing parameters like motor settings, ZPA functionality, etc. can be done for multiple modules all at once with EasyRoll
* Your PLC only has to connect to modules it needs to interface with and not every module in the network
* ZPA Extension function is able to be configured

Disadvantages to Separate ConveyLinx Auto-Configuraton:

* Profinet name of the module is set during Auto-Configuration and cannot be modified
* Your PLC must use the exact syntax of the module’s Profinet name in order to connect
* You have to know in advance your exact network topology and I.P. addressing prior to programming your PLC

Integrated Configuration Direct from PLC Topology

When using this method, you create your network topology within the Siemens PLC programming environment (TIA Portal or STEP 7). All pertinent module parameters become available within your environment and can be configured at design time. As long as your physical installed network topology of control modules matches your designed topology in your PLC programming environment; when you download your project to your PLC, the PLC takes care of all of the ConveyLinx control module configuration.

Advantages of Configuration from PLC Topology:

* No module naming restrictions
* No need to use separate EasyRoll software
* Module replacement is true plug and play because PLC handles the procedure
* All module parameters are integrated into the Siemens PLC programming environment

Disadvantages to Configuration from PLC Topology:

* You have to include all ConveyLinx modules in your topology regardless of whether you need to interact with them with your PLC logic for your system
* No built in ability to change parameters for multiple modules at the same time; you have to construct own PLC logic to do this
* ZPA Extension function is not available