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Getting Started with Visual KPI Interfaces

Visual KPI interfaces allow the Visual KPI Server to communicate with and read data from external data sources, such as an OSIsoft PI Server or other industrial historians, relational databases, data warehouses or data lakes, manual data entry, spreadsheets, vertical industry applications, REST APIs and other web services, or just about any other data sources (thousands supported). To access these systems, you must install and configure one of our included interfaces or set up a new interface using the Visual KPI Server Manager.

To access these systems, or create the interface: 

  1. Install an appropriate interface using the Visual KPI Server Manager. A Visual KPI Interface defines how to connect to a data source (SDK, API, connect string, etc.), security credentials, parameters (if required).
  2. Once an interface is in place and working, you can use the Visual KPI Designer (or automate using our Remote Context Service (RCS) features) to setup KPIs or other charts/visualizations that get data from these sources.

Steps for Installing Visual KPI Interfaces

Setting up a Visual KPI interface involves these common procedures, no matter what the data source:

  1. Install data source native client tools on Visual KPI Server. See Prerequisites and Downloads for links to the vendor drivers and other required software.
    • OSIsoft PI or AF: PI SDK, AF SDK, PI RDA
    • SQL: SQL Management Studio or SQL driver. 
    • Oracle: Oracle Drivers with ODAC and test them with Toad
    • Any other relational database: ODBC drivers
    • Any OLAP data source: OLAP drivers
    • Wonderware: Wonderware SDK
    • GE Proficy: Proficy SDK
    • AspenTech: SQL driver
    • inmation: No drivers required
    • JSON: No drivers required
    • Rockwell FactoryTalk Historian (OEM version of OSIsoft PI): SDK
    • If you don’t see your preferred data source, just ask us (thousands supported!)
  2. Using Visual KPI Server Manager, install the interface.
  3. Use Visual KPI Server Manager to configure the connection.
  4. Verify the connection.
  5. Test the connection.
  6. Use Visual KPI Designer to define an interface for a KPI.

See Interfaces & Data Sources for articles on how to install, configure, verify and test each type of Interface.

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