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How do I setup and use a DDE Server device?
Article Details

Last Updated
20th of March, 2018

Applies to
WinSPC 7.2, WinSPC 8.0, WinSPC 8.1, WinSPC 8.2, WinSPC 8.3, WinSPC 9.0

WinSPC has the ability to gather data from a Dynamic Data Exchange (DDE) server device. Setting up a DDE server device involves selecting the DDE server device type and then setting up the device's connection. This knowledge base article assumes the reader is familiar with DDE server concepts. Readers not familiar with such concepts may benefit from reviewing the following Microsoft article prior to attempting the below procedure:

Selecting the DDE Server device type

  1. Double-click the Device you want to set up as a DDE Server device from within the Contents pane of the Administrator screen.  This causes the Device Setup dialog box to appear with the Connection tab selected.   If the device is not yet created, complete the Creating a Device procedure by clicking on the following link:  How do I create a Device in WinSPC
  2. Select DDE Server from the Device Type dropdown box.  The Connection tab changes to content appropriate to DDE servers.

Setup the device's connectiondde_server_connection.jpg

  1. Click the Browse button and select the executable for the application being used as the DDE server for the Executable Name box. (For example, if the DDE server is Excel, select excel.exe.)
  2. Enter the name of the service in the Service box. (For example, if the DDE Server is Excel, enter Excel). 
  3. Enter the name of the topic in the Topic Name box.  (For example, if the DDE server is Excel, the topic name would be the sheet name within the Excel spreadsheet file that contains the reading.)
  4. Check the Use Hot Links checkbox if you want data to be sent to WinSPC as soon as the data is available.
  5. Click the OK button.

The DDE server device is now setup and collection plans can be set up to use it.  

Helpful Hints
when setting up a collection plan step to collect data from the DDE server:

collectionplan_icon.jpgIn the Channel Number / Item Name field in the Collection Plan setup, for Excel, enter the row and column number (R1C1).

collectionplan_icon.jpgIf the Use Hot Links check box was checked, specify Random as the Collection Method in the Collection Plan setup dialog box.

collectionplan_icon.jpgIf Use Hot Links check box was not checked, specify a key combination that operators can use to Prompt the DDE server for data. Do this using the Device Options section on the Collection Plan Options tab of the Collection Plan setup dialog box.

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