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Microsoft Contributing Open-Source OPC UA

    The OPC Foundation has announced an open-source implementation of the OPC UA technology, available on GitHub to truly enable the OPC community’s successful adoption of OPC UA across all markets and all platforms.

    OPC UA is the set of standards for multivendor multiplatform secure reliable interoperability for moving information from the embedded world to the cloud.   The testimonial to the standards is a complete reference implementation that is now been posted as an open-source implementation, replacing the original OPC Foundation .NET deliverables that were developed and maintained for the last 10 years.

    The original OPC Foundation .NET OPC UA reference implementation has been available to OPC Foundation members and last year was provided as an open-source implementation on GitHub. This version was targeted and limited to Microsoft Windows only.

    The new OPC Foundation reference stack, based on the new .NET Standard Library technology, was developed and optimized by Microsoft to serve as the complete platform-independent infrastructure, from the embedded world to the cloud. This new version is enabled on the following supported platforms: Various Linux distributions, iOS, Android, Windows 7, Windows 8, Windows 8.1, Windows 10, Windows Phone, HoloLens, and the Azure cloud.

    One of the most important features of the .NET Standard Stack is the expansion of the security features to meet the needs of the Industrial Internet of Things (IIoT) applications, as well as the requirements of “Platform Industrie 4.0”.

    Additional benefits of the OPC UA .Net Standard Stack include:

    • The .NET Standard stack is cross platform, specifically enabling OPC UA applications.
    • The .NET Standard API portability strategy is all about developing once and running everywhere: No need to special-case OS-specific functionality.
    • The architecture of the .NET Standard stack focuses on managed code, which translates to rapid application development.
    • Microsoft deliberately enabled the creation of NuGet packages, which allows suppliers to quickly integrate OPC UA support into their application with a few simple clicks.
    • The .NET Standard Stack includes increased security inclusive of support for SHA512.
    • The .NET Standard Stack enables support for cross-platform UI design tools through Xamarin.
    • Microsoft has provided, in conjunction with the OPC Foundation, an extremely rich set of sample applications, inclusive of reference clients, reference servers, an aggregation server, an OPC classic wrapper, and a web application to quickly display OPC UA telemetry data sent to the cloud.
    • Microsoft has also provided, in conjunction with the OPC Foundation complete samples demonstrating Azure connectivity leveraging the OPC UA publish/subscribe technology (the specification of which is currently being finalized).