Migrating Wonderware to Ignition Part 2

A few short years ago, Wonderware was the hot software on the market. Now, on a nearly weekly basis, Corso is getting calls from facilties currently using Wonderware (WW) looking at migrating to Ignition.

Instead of issuing a blanket statement of Ignition is better than WW. Alex is going to help take us on a deep dive of the differences.

P.S. Wonderware friends, please don’t hate us. Everyone really is asking these questions…

If you missed part 1, you can check it out here.

Security

Security management, and implementation is similar in all modern SCADA platforms. Following standard best practices, such as changing default user names and passwords. Will keep the vast majority facilities secure. If you’re worried about security, please feel free to reach out and we’d  be happy to talk about a security audit for your facility.
Both Ignition and Wonderware have similar security architectures. You can use the built-in providers to manage users/roles, or can connect to Active Directory in both platforms.
Both Ignition and Wonderware use Java. Java is not something that you should worry about. It’s a very safe, very stable platform that you probably already have installed on your computer.

Redundancy

Both Wonderware and Ignition offer similar redundancy architectures. If you opt for the redundancy, getting everything set up properly in your system with failover and appropriate hardware is extremely important.
This could mean working with your IT department to make sure that everything will properly function. Also setting up and conducting tests in known conditions to make sure that both the hardware and software function properly.

Support

Ignition support has a couple of tiers. Working with Corso, we will answer and fix (almost) all of your problems as the integrator familiar with your system. Email support from Inductive Automation is part of their Basic care package. Phone support is part of their total care package. There is also a really informative online forum.
Please note that with both of their care packages, you get included upgrade support.
WW support is provided by distributors, so is entirely dependent on the distributor in your region. If Corso was working on your system, we would also be the main point of contact.

Backups

Both have the ability to take on-demand an automated backups. There are different options to backup your servers as well as pushing data to the cloud for additional analysis.

Alex’s Opinion

Given the ease of licensing, and general architecture of managing windows, tags, components, etc. Ignition is much easier to use from a development perspective. It is all accomplished in the designer, with clients used to run things, and global gateway settings in a web browser. WW is working towards this model, but is still a handful of tools put together over the years, vs. being developed from the ground up, and has more of a learning curve than Ignition to get to the same result.

Can ignition do everything Wonderware can do, and do it well?

The places where WW excels over Ignition is in data compression on the Historian side, which is not generally an issue for 95% of all projects we have done, and the ability to drop in .NET objects and components into the architecture. This is not something we have ever been limited by, but is something that cannot be done in Ignition.
Ignition excels in the ease of development, configuration, and deployment with a more straightforward architecture being developed from the ground up, and in my experience has a better support ecosystem.
Personally Alex would not pick Wonderware over Ignition if given a choice in 2018. Wonderware was the primary option on my list in 2010, but after they got bought by Schneider, their development has stagnated, and they are not trying to innovate like Ignition is doing currently.

What do you think?

Ready to make your decision? Or want to have a more in-depth conversation about this? Please feel free to reach out and we’ll have a more in-depth conversation.