MDT Software is expanding the range of its change-management program with a new product that will allow manufacturers to manage PC images and backups. It said the added function would expand the wide range of plant software supported by its AutoSave Change Management platform.

MDT specializes in “change management solutions” for automated manufacturing devices: its core product, AutoSave, allows users to protect, save, restore, discover, and track changes in industrial programmable devices and plant-floor documents.  AutoSave supports a comprehensive range of devices and editors, including products supplied by Schneider, Siemens, Mitsubishi, Indramat, Wonderware, GE, Rockwell Automation and others. 

The AutoSave PC Backup & Recovery module is designed to manage the creation of disk images and incremental revisions, and to store these in the AutoSave system.   The first implementation of this module interacts with the Acronis Backup & Recovery 11 Workstation to provide customers with the ability to create, schedule and manage multiple revisions of PC images for rapid recovery. 

This module interfaces to the Acronis Backup & Recovery 11 Workstation application to provide on-demand backups for entire PC hard drives, designation partitions or specific folders or files.  The Acronis application takes a 'snapshot' of the disk using Acronis' patented disk imaging technologies and then AutoSave stores each data set as a unique revision while maintaining prior revisions. Users can define how many revisions are stored in the AutoSave system. In providing this common central repository of disk images, plant personnel are empowered to manage their own PC data using the same application they use to manage changes in their automation device programs.

The developer described other advantages, including the ability to conduct PC backups on the plant floor, increasing the organization’s IT/OT alignment with effective management of valuable operational technology assets. Also, PC images revisions are available for rapid recovery from the AutoSave Server, and a single change-management system is used for both automation and PC.

In addition, MDT noted that the AutoSave change-management function will provide an automation backup solution for PC-based controls, and some HMIs; and it will allow faster migration to new hardware with quick retrieval of operating data and system settings.

“The AutoSave PC Backup & Recovery module further expands the unmatched range of software supported by AutoSave to provide plant-wide change control for rapid disaster recovery,” stated MDT Software vice president and general manager Gary Gillespie. “MDT is committed to the continual development of innovative solutions to ease our customers’ change-control burdens.”