Virtualbox and Factory IO

My company uses Tia portal software on virtualbox Hv, this way we only need to install the sw once, and then it’s faster to recover/install on a support pc in case it’s needed.
We would also like to try Factory IO but it seems that it only works while both sdk and F.IO are installed in host O.S. because of the softbus communication via plcsim. Unfortunately Vbox still stutters with 256mb Vram. (I know you have a guide suggesting to enable 3d, but the end result will be 90% cpu to render a simple scene)

I suggested to change Vbox network from Nat to internal configuration and put the guest on the main network, so that we can use guest Tia portal, and host Factory Io with the main gpu (or even another computer in the same network). Is this possible? I believe we’d need to get plcsim advanced and use virtual ethernet

Hi @jferri7!
It is possible to use different computers.

There is no official way from Siemens to communicate with S7-PLCSIM V13-15, so we scan the running processes, and read and write directly to the PLCSIM process memory. That is why we provide project templates with a special FC to run in the simulator.

However, as the general S7-1200/1500 driver of Factory IO can connect to a PLC exposed in the network, you have two possibilities:

  • Use NetToPLCSim to expose S7-PLCSIM to the network
  • Use S7-PLCSIM Advanced

Using NetToPLCSim: In the past, we were able to successfully use NetToPLCSim to expose the simulated PLC from S7-PLCSIM to the network, and then connect Factory IO to it through the S7-1200/1500 driver.
However, we did have both applications running on the same computer, but we believe it would also work on a different PC.

Using S7-PLCSIM Advanced: S7-PLCSIM Advanced exposes the simulated PLC to the network without having to use external applications. You can find the manual for S7-PLCSIM Advanced here. I think pages 17, 18 and 19 may help you create a distributed instance.
After this, you can follow our tutorial to set up S1200/S1500 (instead of a real PLC, you use the simulated one).

Please let me know if you were able to do it.