FieldPoint was National Instruments' solution for rugged, reliable, deployable I/O for over a decade. However, advancements in processor technology and availability of Field Programmable Gate Arrays (FPGA) provided capability increases too tempting to ignore, and in 2004 National Instruments (NI) introduced the CompactRIO, a platform that has changed the market forever. From custom digital protocols via FPGA to closed loop PID, CompactRIO is the go-to for LabVIEW programmers needing Real-Time reliability in a rugged form factor.
How has this affected NI FieldPoint?
Progress means eventual obsolescence, and LabVIEW 2015 SP1 is the last version to support NI FieldPoint. When including Operating System and development environment compatibility in the matrix, many users found a chain of events linking Microsoft's discontinuation of Windows XP support resulting in an unplanned need to replace FieldPoint hardware.
What is a time constrained engineering manager to do?
NI provides a clear path to upgrade, and resources are available.
However, in software development, there are devils in the details. Cyth Systems have upgraded Compact FieldPoint systems, to CompactRIO/CompactDAQ, such that if in-house resources are not experienced in such upgrades or not available, a Gold Level National Instruments Alliance Partner can be engaged to deliver a new system turnkey alleviating the upgrade headache decisively. It is Cyth Systems belief (based on our observations and relation with NI, but is not a guarantee) that the FieldPoint obsolescence was a rare platform change scenerio from NI, and that cRIO and cDAQ, already in service for over a decade, are likely to continue well into the future, thus preserving this upgrade for what is likely a long time.
Check out some of our NI FieldPoint Migration Case Studies!
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