Lintouch

Mar
16
2010

Lintouch is an opensource HMI software. It lets you design user interfaces for process automation. Lintouch runs on most popular hardware and software platforms, is lightweight and easily xtensible. Lintouch is free software and is distributed under the GNU General Public License. Learn more about Lintouch Licensing and check out the available Enterprise Support. Using Lintouch Editor you can easily build your own HMIs by designing and testing the graphical layout of your screens. Later on you deploy the created Lintouch Project to your target device where it will be executed within the Lintouch Runtime.

Key Features

  • 1. Multiplatform. Lintouch runs on most popular hardware and software platforms including embedded systems such as Motorola PowerPC with Linux and Intel desktops with Microsoft Windows. The portability is only limited by availability of C/C++ compiler and its two major dependencies: Qt Library of Trolltech, and APR (Apache Portable Runtime) Library of Apache Software Foundation. Qt is the basic building block of KDE Desktop Environment. APR powers the most popular web server Apache.
  • 2. Lightweight. Lintouch has been optimized for small and embedded devices. It utilizes only a little disk space (Server ~ 100kb, Runtime ~ 900kb) and has small memory footprint (32MB of RAM is sufficient for both Server and Runtime).
  • 3. Server/Client Architecture. Lintouch features server/client architecture: Lintouch Runtime provides a rich graphical user interface gathering the process data from Lintouch Server over a custom TCP/IP based communication protocol.
  • 4. Extensible. The plugin based Lintouch architecture lets you implement new visualization objects and industrial communication protocols. These Connection Plugins and Template Libraries are loaded into Lintouch as DLL (Dynamic Loadable Library) files - the same way new plugins are installed into Adobe Photoshop, for example.
  • 5. Opensource. Lintouch is being developed as an opensource software with all the source code, specifications, and documentation publicly available. It is distributed under the GNU GPL license which grants its users the right to modify the software to suit their own needs.
Lintouch architecture
Lintouch Editor
You use Lintouch Editor to design your visualization/control screens (pages), specify images that will be displayed, configure objects, their behavior and connection to the monitored systems. Lintouch

The resulting package called Lintouch Project can later be deployed to the Lintouch Server. You can add new visualization objects by developing new Template Libraries that are as DLL files plugged to the existing Lintouch installation.

Lintouch Runtime

Lintouch Runtime downloads the deployed Lintouch Project, visualizes the screens, and sends user generated changes to the Lintouch Server.

The communication protocol used to exchange data among Lintouch Server and one or more Lintouch Runtimes is a custom made and documented protocol built on top of TCP/IP.

Lintouch example Lintouch Server

Lintouch Server connects to the monitored systems via special industrial protocols and sends changes of the data to the Lintouch Runtime.

New communication protocols can be plugged to the Lintouch Server by developing new Server Plugins that can be added as DLL files to the existing Lintouch installation.

History

Lintouch was initially developed as a port of SWAC's Wintouch product to Linux operating system. The year 2003 meant a major shift in the development of Lintouch when SWAC decided to release it as an opensource software available under GNU GPL.



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