Compliance Corner – September 2021

Testing Future

This summer has been a busy time. We did an analysis of the products we are seeing in the lab, functionality supported by SDK vendors, the direction of key OPC Foundation working groups and several major companion standards. This analysis shows that the general range of supported functionality is expanding at a fast pace and that the type of products that are being certified have grown in scope and that this increase in scope will continue. By scope we mean not only the support for multiple interface/transports (e.g. Server, Client, PubSub, OPC UA over MQTT) but also extensions to the base OPC UA specification (OPC UA FX, Device Integration, base asset models), inclusion of companion specification information models (e.g.MDIS, VDMA sponsored models, PLCopen) and even the use of OPC UA by other group such as the Open Group and their O-PAS standard.

What does this mean to Certification? It means we will have to have a rapid expansion of the test case definition and automated testing. This becomes even more critical since many groups are requiring certification (OPC UA FX, O-PAS, MDIS, and more).

So what have we done?

  • We have expanded and improved the scope of test cases to include many lesser-used conformance units and profiles.
  • We have expanded the teams that are generating test case definitions.
  • We have worked with many of the other groups (such as UA FX, O-PAS) to help them generate test cases as needed for their information models.

We believe this will be a longer-term increase in effort. So, what should you expect? More test cases will be available in the Profile reporting tool and the automated testing that is available via the CTT will increase. There will be major step changes with each of the next few releases of the CTT. Also, the tooling itself like the profile reporting tool will receive a major update making it easier for vendors / end-users to find appropriate profiles/facets and their related test cases.

MDIS

The MDIS organization has merged with the OPC Foundation. As a result of this merger, the automated testing that has been available for a number of years for MDIS members will now be available publicly. The MDIS organization has required certification of products that implement their companion specification and the OPC Foundation has been providing this certification, primarily for MDIS member companies. As a result of this merger, the certification will be available to any company, not just MDIS members and all test cases and automation testing will also be publicly available .

CTT

The next release of the CTT is scheduled for end of September. It will include the first wave of enhanced test cases and general CTT enhancements. The CTT will include enhancement for UA functionality such as Alarm & Condition testing, enhancement to Client test cases, better coverage of conformance units, and it will include testing for companion specifications including MDIS, PLCopen, DEXPI, and PA-DIM. Some companion specification testing, such as MDIS will include full functionality testing and all expected behavior testing. Others will only include initial information model verification and testing.

If you do have questions on these topics or are interested in getting involved in our activities, please do not hesitate to contact us at: compliance[AT]opcfoundation.org.

Paul Hunkar
Compliance Director
OPC Foundation