Panel topology/Group alert facility

A core component of WinCC OA is the facility to define a panel topology (tree structure for process panels) with integrated group alert system. This framework can be defined at the start of a project using new panels or by integrating existing panels in the topology. This facility offers enormous simplification, especially when dealing with large process installations. The panel topology is defined in convenient user panels, while diagnostic panels flag up any missing or incorrect parameter settings. As the name suggests, the panel topology/group alert facility is composed of two parts:

Creation of a panel topology: all panels in a project are organized into a hierarchy. This structuring simplifies the project enormously, especially when dealing with large process installations. Special functions then check the constructed topology (e.g. can the panels be accessed from individual buttons as defined in the panel topology).

Automatic generation of group alerts based on the panel topology: group alerts are defined that cover the whole panel hierarchy, so that any alerts occurring in the panels can be reported up through the hierarchy and displayed graphically according to definable priority ranges.

Process displays (panels) are saved in the project directory <proj_path>/panels and are structured using a hierarchy, which must be defined. It is also possible to include existing panels in the topology as well as defining new panels when creating a panel topology. Independent process displays (e.g. alert panel, event panel etc.) can be accessed from anywhere in the project and do not form part of the topology.

The "start panel", which can be selected/created to suit, is the starting point for the panel topology. The panel topology, which is essentially a tree structure (Explorer view), grows out from this panel, and can contain as many nodes and sub-nodes as required. These are linked to panels, for instance main panels are placed on nodes, while detailed views are placed on their associated child nodes. It takes just a few clicks with the mouse to integrate a panel topology in a project and configure it. The "independent" panels, which exist outside the topology, are linked to a similar structure of intermediate nodes (this sub-tree is supplied with WinCC OA and can be edited by the user, or extra nodes added).

Once the panel topology has been defined, the final step is to generate the group alerts based on this topology. By combining the configured alert data points used in the individual panels of a topology, it is possible to display these alerts (using colored indicators) irrespective of which panel they occur in. Note that in order to show the alerts in the panel topology it has to be possible to acknowledge the alerts in the original panels (where the alerts occurred).

In addition, a range of objects are also supplied for navigation purposes and for graphical reporting of alerts. User-friendly design and operating panels provided in the panel topology/group alert facility, plus a choice of three different layouts each with three different resolutions, let the user create multi-panel projects quickly and conveniently.


The panel topology and group alert facility shows the user how to manage projects and process displays more simply. It also demonstrates the straightforward user-guidance system that can be achieved with WinCC OA.

  • A hierarchy can be defined from various panels that already exist in a project or from panels created using the panel topology facility.

  • Pre-defined templates in the three most common resolutions (1024x768, 1280x1024, 1600x1200) provide a choice of displays.

  • It is always possible to find a specific panel.

  • It is extremely easy to locate an alert in the topology, even if the root panel or child panel in which the alert was triggered is not open.

  • Support of multimonitor mode with default template and an individual configuration for every connected screen .