Alarm management in the eLynx application is available in both the desktop and mobile interfaces. Alarms can be sent to individual recipients via e-mail, text message, or automated voice callouts. Please contact your account representative for information on fees associated with Text Messaging and Voice Callouts.
When creating/editing an alarm in the system you can notify individual users, lists of users (Notification Lists), or setup Alarm Schemes that allow for repeat notifications, escalations to other users if an alarm is not acknowledged or cleared within a time period.
Alarms in the eLynx application may be created on an individual tag in the system, or they may be shared with multiple tags AS LONG AS the tags can all be converted to the setpoints Unit of Measure. When creating shared alarms in this manner the system will only allow you to select tags that qualify for the appropriate conversion.
In order to be able to Edit Notification Lists, Alarm Schemes, Notification Recipients, or Alarm Setpoints a user must be granted the appropriate permissions in the application. Each of these items has a separate permission setting for editing.
See the Table of Contents below for links to the different operations available to create alarms.
Most of the screenshots shown in this article have been taken from the Mobile presentation, the Desktop presentations will be shown where they are significantly different than the Mobile presentation, or where they offer additional functionality.
Table of Contents
- Setting up Recipients
- Notification Lists
- Alarm Schemes
- Alarm Schedules
- Adding / Editing an Alarm
- Other Actions
- Alarm Dashboard
Setting up Recipients
The primary method of setting up a Recipient in the system is to add an e-mail or phone number to a User of the system. This action can be performed in the desktop presentation using the User and Role Administration tool, while this function is not available in the mobile presentation you can add a recipient when creating / editing an Alarm (see Alarm Notifications below.)
In the desktop presentation you can use the User and Role Administration tool by selecting it from the Administration tool.
The system will present a list of Users in the current Organization.
To add a Recipient Address (either an e-mail address or a phone number) click the More Options button to the right of the user and select Edit from the menu. Then click the "Alarm Notifications" button in the bottom right corner to access the notification addresses for the current User.
By default each user will have at least one Recipient tied to their login e-mail address, but there may be additional Recipients shown in the list. To add a new e-mail address or phone number click on the Add Recipient button in the upper right corner.
The Add Recipient window will open where you can add the information for the new Recipient.
Under Type you can select from Email, Text, or Voice. Once you have selected a Type the screen will change to collect the necessary information.
For Email just enter an e-mail address in the Email Address field, once entered you can click OKAY to save the new recipient address, or if you want this address tied to all of the alarms of another recipient you may do so by checking the "Add this recipient to the notification lists and alarm setpoints of another recipient" checkbox, this will add a Dropdown control where you can select an existing Recipient and this new Recipient will instantly start receiving all of the same alarm information.
For Text message the screen will prompt for the Country Code and Phone Number for the new Recipient.
And for Voice the application will prompt for the Sub Type (One of Cell, Day, Fax, Home, Night, or Work) as well as the Country Code and Phone Number.
Once all new Recipient information has been added click through to the "Security" step then click "Save Changes" to store the new Recipient information (and optionally tie it to existing Notification Lists and Alarm Setpoints.
Notification Lists in the eLynx application allow you to group together multiple recipients so that they all receive the same information when alarms occur. Examples for usage might be to create a notification list for each Route in your system so that as personnel change editing the Notification List for the route will update all the Alarms in the system for that route.
Notification Lists can be edited in both the Mobile and Desktop presentations of the application. In the Mobile application select the Main Menu button, then select the Administration button, and finally select the Notification List Administration option.
For the desktop presentation select Notification List Administration from the Adminitration Tools menu.
Once in the Notification List Administration tool a list of existing notification lists will be presented. (Please note that in order to maximize screen space some items on the screen may be hidden if the "Maximize" button is enabled. (It will turn light blue if enabled.) You will need to turn this off if you wish to Filter the list of Notification Lists or to Add a new Notification List.
Creating a new Notification List
Click the Add button in the upper right corner to create a new Notification List
The Notification List edit window will display (showing mobile presentation here but will be similar on desktop). The simplest use case is entering a Name for the list and then scrolling through and checking boxes for the recipients to add to the list. Once that information is entered you can click the "Save" button to create the new list.
If you have a large number of Recipients you can use the Options panel to apply filters to the list to help find specific Recipients.
Option 1: Search by Recipient Name. - Any text you type in this field will adjust the list shown in the Notification List editor to only those Recipients whose name contains the entered text.
Option 2: Filter by Recipient Type - Selecting one of the buttons in this area will limit the list shown in the Notification List editor to selected type.
Option 3: View Selected - This changes the list shown in the Notification List editor to those already selected, this makes it easy to find and remove a recipient that is no longer needed.
Option 4: Organization - If your company has multiple Organizations setup in the application (this is very rare) you can use this tool to find Recipients from other Organizations and add them to your Notification List.
Once you have setup your filters clicking outside the Options panel will return you to the Notification List editor with the filters applied. (The Options icon will turn light blue to indicate a filter is active.) To remove an active filter click the Options button again and click the Reset button at the bottom.
Once you have named the list and selected the Recipients for your new Notification List click the Save button to save the list to the system.
Adding a new Recipient
While you are creating (or editing) a Notification List you also have the option to create a Recipient from the Notification List editor.
In this example I'm working on a Notification List for "Route 1", but I don't yet have cell phone numbers setup for my users to send them text messages for alarms.
Let's say I want to add a phone number for "UserThree, Demo" above so I can text that user instead of using Email notifications. From this screen the Add button adds a new Recipient so I'll click that and the Add Recipient window will open to allow me to enter the information.
By default the system will create a new stand alone recipient not tied to a user of the system, but I want this phone number tied to the "UserThree, Demo" account so I'll click the "Link the new recipient to the user of an existing recipient" checkbox then select "UserThree, Demo" from the drop down. Then I switch the Type to Text and the screen will update to allow me to enter the Country Code and Phone Number for the new Recipient. The completed screen is shown below.
Everything looks good so I'll click the OKAY button to save the new recipient and now it becomes available for selection in my notification list.
Please not that you can tell if a phone number is being used for text messages vs. voice callouts by the icon next to the phone number (message bubble for text and handset for voice).
Reviewing and Editing Existing Notification Lists.
If you want to review or edit a specific Notification List you can use the Options panel to filter the list to only those Notification Lists that contain the text you enter. If a filter is active the Options icon will turn blue. You can clear any active filters by opening the Options panel and clicking the RESET button.
When you are in the Notification List Administration tool and not actively creating or editing a list the system will show you a list of all of the Notification Lists created. For each Notification List you'll see the following options / information.
Option 1: More Options - This will open a menu that will have an option to Edit the notification list, and if the Notification List is NOT in use there will be an option to Delete the Notification List.
Option 2: Recipients - Shows a count of recipients for this notification list, please note that a single user with both e-mail and text messages enabled will count as two recipients. Clicking the disclosure arrow to the right of RECIPIENTS will show the list of recipients in this notification list and includes a More Options button for each recipient that allows you to edit it. (Change a phone number or e-mail address, you cannot change the Recipient type.)
Option 3: Usage - Clicking the disclosure arrow to the right of USAGE will show a list of Alarm Setpoints that are using this Notification List as well as a list of the Groups which contain each device. Clicking on the Group shown will take you to the Summary Listing for that group.
Alarm Schemes in the eLynx application provide three functions.
- The ability to delay notifications.
- The ability to repeat notifications.
- The ability to escalate notifications if alarms are not acted upon.
Note: When using Alarm Schemes in the eLynx application Notification Lists MUST be used, if you wish to notify a single Recipient you will need to create a Notification List that includes only that single Recipient.
Alarm Schemes are managed using the Alarm Scheme Administration tool which can be found in the Administrative Tools on the main menu.
When you enter the Alarm Scheme tool you will be presented with a list of Alarm Schemes that already exist, or a message indicating that none have yet been created.
Creating an Alarm Scheme
To create an Alarm Scheme first ensure that the Maximize option is turned off. (not light blue)
Then select the Add button near the top of the screen.
First we need to give our Alarm Scheme a name, for this example I'm using "Route 1 High Priority"
Now that we've entered the name we can start to add the "Tiers" that will determine how Alarms that use this scheme behave. To do that we'll click the Add button at the top of the Scheme definition.
Each Tier has two screens to fill out, the first sets the behavior of the tier, and the second allows us to select the Notification Lists that will receive notifications for that Tier. Let's look at the options on the first screen.
- Each tier must be named although I usually just use Tier 1, Tier 2, etc. to keep it simple.
- If set to 0 this tier will be notified immediately when an alarm condition occurs or clears, if set to some number of minutes then the alarm (while detected and recorded immediately) will not notify users in this tier unless it stays in alarm this many minutes.
- If selected this tier will be notified one time when the number of minutes in Option 2 has occurred.
- If selected the Recipients on this tier will be notified every X minutes until the alarm is acknowledged, or has cleared.
- If selected the Recipients on this tier will be notified up to X times every Y minutes until the alarm is acknowledged or cleared.
- Once this screen is completed Select the Notifications button to move on to selecting Notification Lists for this tier.
When we move on to the Notifications step we'll see a screen that looks something like this.
Notice this screen has both an Add Button that will allow you to create a new Notification List, and an Options button that will allow you to filter the list of notification lists shown by searching for some text.
You must select at least one Notification List for each Tier, but you can select multiple lists if you like. A single Recipient being a part of multiple lists WILL NOT cause them to get extra notifications.
Once the Notification Lists are selected click the Add Tier button to return to the Alarm Scheme editor, you can add as many Tiers as you need to ensure that notifications and escalations are setup as you need them.
Once all the Tiers are in place click the Save button to save the Alarm Scheme and make it available in the system.
So for our example I'm going to create two tiers, the first notify the Route 1 recipients that there is an issue, and since this is for "High Priority" it will repeat the alarm 3 times every 15 minutes if not cleared or acknowledged. So that will look like this:
The second will Tier will notify the Route 1 Manager after 90 minutes if the alarm has not been acknowledged or cleared. Since I only wanted to notify a singe recipient I created a new Notification List with just the single entry using the Notification List instructions above.
Once I've saved this new scheme if I will return to the main Alarm Scheme Administration page and the new Scheme will appear in the list.\
If I click the disclosure arrow for DETAILS on the card the system will show me a textual description for each of the tiers.
Note: If an Alarm Scheme is used for Tiered notifications Alarm Clear messages will only be sent to those Recipents that received the initial Alarm message. Therefore if an Alarm is Acknowledged BEFORE a higher Tier is notified the higher Tier will not receive either the Alarm or Alarm Clear messages.
Editing an Alarm Scheme
For each Alarm Scheme you can click on the More Actions button and click Edit Alarm Scheme to re-open the Alarm Scheme Editor. Once there you can see the tiers, you can add new tiers with the Add button, or edit or delete existing tiers (each tier will have its own More Actions button.
Deleting an Alarm Scheme
When looking at the list of Alarm Schemes you can click on the More Actions button and click Delete Alarm Scheme to remove a scheme you no longer need. This option will be disabled if the Alarm Scheme is currently in use. Clicking the disclosure arrow next to SETPOINTS on any Alarm Scheme will show where it is used and provide links to the Alarm Setpoint Editor to allow you to change that Alarm Setpoint if you wish to change notifications.
Alarm schedules allow you to set days and hours for users to receive alarms.
EX: You have a list of pumpers that only want to receive alarms on certain days at certain times. This will let you have more granular control over who gets what alarms when. If you don't see this option on your site, please contact eLynx support to have it enabled.
To create a new schedule, navigate to the 'Alarm Schedule Administration listed under the Alarms & Notifications section of Admin Tools.
Once selected you can select from the top right corner to begin creating your schedule.
The following screen will help you define the schedule as well as set blackout days and times.
- Name - the Alarm Schedule using something unique that indicates what the Schedule will be applied to. For example, 1 Week On 2 Weeks Off- No Blackouts
- Time Zone - What time zone the schedule is going to be applied in?
- Scheduling - Set a date and time for the schedule to begin. You have the option to set a Duration or select a date and time for the end, and the duration will be automatically calculated. Next set the Repeat Interval. The example below shows 1 Week On 2 Weeks Off
- Blackout Options - In the event you do not wish for users to receive notifications during certain times or on certain days there are options to set both. In the example below, recipients wouldn't receive alarm notifications during the hours of 7pm-7am while they are on the schedule. The preview indicates this by showing the partial days half shaded. in addition to the blackout times there is more functionality to remove certain days as well. For example, weekends shown below. The black shading is indicating the partial blackout of alarm notifications on M-F and full blackout for the weekend.
Editing an Alarm Schedule
For each Alarm Schedule you can click on the More Actions button and click Edit to re-open the Alarm Schedule Editor. Once there, you can edit the schedule. When completed, click Save in the upper right corner.
Deleting an Alarm Schedule
For each Alarm Schedule you can click on the More Actions button and click Delete to remove a schedule you no longer need. This option will be disabled if the Alarm Schedule is currently in use.
Adding / Editing an Alarm
Alarm Setpoints can be added and edited from both the Mobile presentation and the Desktop presentation and either from the Tag Details screen or the Alarm Setpoint Administration screen. For the purposes of the walkthrough here I'll mostly use the Desktop presentation and will also highlight the differences between Mobile and Desktop where necessary.
Adding / Editing from Tag Details
In this example we will walk through adding an Alarm Setpoint for low flow on a pair of meters set at delivery points from our gathering system to two separate pipelines. From my Summary Listing screen I don't see the value that I want to create an Alarm Setpoint on, so I'll just click on one of the device names to jump to the Device Details screen.
Now that I'm on the Device Details page I make sure that the Tag Values tab is selected then I scroll to the "Gas Spot Flow Rate" tag for which I want to add an Alarm and I'll click on that Tag Name to jump to the Tag Details page.
Once on the Tag Details page I'll select the Alarm Setpoints tab which will either show me a list of existing Alarm Setpoints on that tag, or a note that there are no Alarm Setpoints on this tag.
To add my new Alarm Setpoint I'll click the Add button in the upper right corner
to open the Alarm Setpoint menu.
To edit an existing Alarm Setpoint I can use the More Options button then select Edit this Alarm Setpoint from the menu to open the Alarm Setpoint Editor.
Note: Once you've opened the Add / Edit window you can skip forward to Standard Alarm Properties where we begin the walk through the functionality of the Alarm Setpoint Editor.
Adding / Editing from Alarm Setpoint Administration
To open the Alarm Setpoint Administration page select the Administration tool and click on the Alarm Setpoint Administration link.
Note: On Mobile you will need to click on the Main Menu button to see the menu.
The Alarm Setpoint Administration page will open and display a list of all Alarm Setpoints in use in the current Group.
To add a new Alarm Setpoint click the Add button.
To edit an existing setpoint click the More Options button at the right edge of the screen for the Alarm Setpoint you wish to edit then select Edit this Alarm Setpoint from the menu.
Standard Alarm Properties
The Standard Properties (or Logic) page can change based on selections you make on the page but the default view is the most commonly used so we'll cover it first.
- Name - Enter a name for the Alarm Setpoint
- Database Alarm - This is the most common and refers to any tag that receives updates via a "value" (either numeric or text).
- Field Alarm - This is used for tags on Alarm Cryout devices where the field device reports an Alarm/Clear condition. This Type only applies to cryout devices sold by eLynx.
- Data Type
- Numeric - Used for tags that report data as numeric values (Note, for Tags with "lookup lists" that convert numeric values to text strings on screen are still considered numeric for the purposes of alarming.)
- Text - Used for tags that report data as text.
- Comparison (Only for Numeric Values) Note: Changing this will change the window to enter additional required information.
- Value Comparison - Compares the current value to the Setpoint
- Variance Percentage - Compares the current value to an average value and alarms based on percentage changed.
- Variance Amount - Compares the current value to an average value and alarms based on how much the value has changed.
- greater than - Alarms if the received value is greater than the specified value
- less than - Alarms if the received value is less than the specified value
- note equal to - Alarms if the received value is not equal to the specified value
- equal to - Alarms if the received value is equal to the specified value
- Value - The value used in the above comparisons
- Unit Classification - Each tag in the system has a classification that indicates the type of data expected (i.e. Flow(Liquid), Flow(Gas), Voltage etc.) This setting is used to filter the list of tags to which the Alarm Setpoint can be applied.
- Unit of Measure - The Unit of Measure for the Value entered above. Note: This does not have to match the Unit of Measure on the tag itself AS LONG AS the system knows how to convert the tag value to this Unit of Measure. Example: I've entered 5 in Gallons per Hour for the Alarm Setpoint I'm creating, but the tag can be in Barrels per Day as the system will convert BPD to GPH when evaluating the Alarm Setpoint.
If you select Variance (Percentage) for the Comparison the screen will change as shown below:
- greater or less than - Looks for any change up or down.
- greater than - Looks for a increase only.
- less than - Looks for a decrease only.
- Time Value - Sets how far back the system uses to calculate the average for comparison.
- Sets what scale to use for Option 2
- hours - Sets the average to last Time Value hours.
- days - Set the average to last Time Value days.
- months - Set the average to last Time Value months.
- more than - Alarm if the percentage of change is > Value%.
- less than - Alarm if the percentage of change is < Value% (Can only be used with Operator 1).
Note: As Variance Percentage is ALWAYS in % the Unit Classification and Unit of Measure are not required.
If you select Variance (Amount) for the Comparison it will be similar to the Variance (Percentage) but the threshold will be an actual amount changed and the Unit Classification and Unit of Measure are once again required.
If you select Text as the Data Type the Alarm criteria change to two fields.
- CONTAINS - If the received value contains the Value anywhere in the received text.
- DOES NOT CONTAIN - If the received value does not contain the Value anywhere in the received text.
- EXACTLY MATCHES - If the received value matches the Value exactly.
- DOES NOT EXACTLY MATCH - If the recived value does not match the Value exactly.
- BEGINS WITH - If the received value has the Value at the START.
- ENDS WITH - If the received value has the Value at the END.
- Value - The text to compare to.
I want an alarm when the flow rate at the delivery points from my gathering system to the pipeline drop too low (< 1,000 MCF/day). I'd fill out the screen as shown:
I want an alarm if the Injection Pressure on my gas lift system drops by more than 10% compared to the previous 24 hour average.
I have a PLC on location monitoring and reporting on multiple error conditions. It returns a text value that starts with "Warning" if it sees a potential issue and "Alarm - " followed by the actual alarm condition if there is a fault. and "Normal" if everything is okay. I would like a notification only for the Alarm conditions so I'll check to see if the message starts with "Alarm". Note: I selected BEGINS WITH so that if the text Alarm is part of another message like 'Warning: The high pressure sensor is nearing alarm conditions." it won't trip the alert because "Alarm" is not at the beginning of the message.
Once we have finalized the Alarm logic we can proceed by clicking the Usage button at the bottom of the screen.
Alarm Usage (Selecting Devices and Tags)
When selecting devices and tags to apply an alarm to there are features available on the Desktop that make it easier to find and apply an alarm to multiple devices/tags, because of this difference the section will be covered separately for Desktop vs. Mobile.
Note: Mobile applies only to phones, larger devices like tablets will use the Desktop presentation.
The Usage step will show us a list of all Devices that have a Tag where the Unit of Measure is, or can be converted to the value selected on the Logic step. Each Device has a disclosure arrow to the right that will allow us to see the Tags that match and select them.
While we can step through the list of devices, click the disclosure arrows and manually select each tag to apply the alarm to, there is an easier way.
On the right side of the screen we see an Options pane. We can search for devices by name, and filter the list of tags by name to automatically limit the list and automatically disclose matching tags.
For this example, I want to apply this tag to my two delivery point meters. I know they both have "Del" in their device names, and I know I want to apply the Alarm to the Spot Flow tag. if I type Del into the Device Name filter and Spot Flow into the Tag name filter the screen will now only show me the two devices that match, automatically open the Disclosure arrows and I'll see only the "Gas Spot Flow Rate" tags as any other tag that was in or could be converted to MCF/Day did not have "Spot Flow" as part of their name.
Now for the "easy" part, click the SELECT ALL button above the Options and these two tags will be selected. You can adjust the search terms over and over and use SELECT ALL multiple times, if necessary, each time adds the new tags to the selection but doesn't affect those already selected.
Next to the SELECT ALL button there is a CLEAR ALL button, like the SELECT ALL button it only affects the Devices and Tags that match the criteria.
Pressing the RESET button at the bottom of the OPTIONS pane resets the filter and once again shows all Devices, it will not change any selections that you have already made.
Note: If you start the Alarm Setpoint from the Tag Details page the system will automatically place the Device Name and Tag Name in the filters and show you the single matching tag. You can change the filter criteria if you wish to include additional tags.
The Mobile interface is similar to the Desktop but DOES NOT have the OPTIONS panel to use filters to find Devices and tags. This means that when you start an alarm from the Tag Details screen you will only be able to apply it to that single tag on the selected device. Additionally, if adding or editing from the Alarm Setpoint Administration page you will need to manually scroll through the Device list and use the disclosure arrows to select tags.
Mobile also uses graphical buttons for SELECT ALL and CLEAR ALL as in the Desktop presentation these buttons only act on tags that are shown with the Devices disclosure arrows.
Once the devices and tags are selected press the Notifications button to move on to the next step.
The Notifications step allows us to select how alarm messages should be sent when an Alarm Setpoint is tripped. Notifications ARE NOT required, the system will still track Alarms / Clears on the tag(s) without notifications and highlight tags on the Summary Listing and Device Details pages even if no notifications are selected.
The Notifications page is broken down into 4 major sections as shown below:
Section 1 controls when notifications are sent, both upon entering an Alarm state and on Clearing. By default both are checked so notifications will be sent at both the Start and End of an Alarm event. If you only want to be notified at the start of an event you can uncheck the "Send Notification on Clear" box. You can also use the "Send Notification on Alarm" to disable all notifications for an Alarm, keep in mind that these Alarm Setpoints can be shared across multiple Devices, this setting will affect them all.
Section 2 has tabs to switch between selecting individual recipients and Notification Lists which will change what is shown in Section 3. You can select from both tabs, they are not exclusive, so you can do something like select a Notification List and add additional notifications from the Recipients tab.
Section 3 will display a list of recipients along with each of their notification methods (EMail, Text, Voice) with checkboxes to select the appropriate notification destinations, OR if on the Notification Lists tab you will see a list of the Notification Lists and you may select one or more of them.
Section 4 allows us to search for specific Recipients or Notification Lists by entering search criteria like Name, or Type (Email, Text, Voice), or users in another Organization if your company has multiple Organizations in the application.
Section 4 also contains a setting for Notification Type this setting allows us to switch from single Start / End notifications to Tiered notifications (see Alarm Schemes above for setting up Tiered notifications.)
For this example I want to use the "Route 1 High Priority" Tiered Alarm Scheme we created above.
Note: When using Tiered Alarm Schemes you may only select one scheme for a given Alarm Setpoint.
Once you have selected the Recipients, Notification Lists, or Tiered Notifications for the alarm press the Actions button at the bottom to proceed to configuring the Alarm Actions.
Alarm Actions (Color Coding, Message contents)
The Alarm Actions step allows us to configure how this tag will appear in the Summary Listing and Device Details pages when the tag is in an Alarm state, and also to customize the messaging used in Emails and Voice Callouts. (The messaging for Text messages is not editable.)
Alarm Setpoint Colors
By default the application shows tags that are in an active Alarm with different colors to make them stand out. There are two color settings, these colors will be used any time a tag is in an Alarm state.
The first setting applies when a tag is in an Alarm state if the alarm hasn't been Acknowledged (see Acknowledging Alarms below for more information.) and defaults to red.
The second setting applies when a tag is in an Alarm state and that Alarm has been Acknowledged and defaults to Green. You can change these colors if you wish to make certain alarms stand out in the system based on a different scheme.
The system allows you to customize messages sent via Email and Voice, when you first enter this screen the system shows an Example of the Alarm and Clear messages that will be used, if you select Use Custom Messaging from the Options panel you can edit these messages.
The screen shows two sections of two rows. The first section is for Alarm messages at the start of an event, and the second section is for the Clear messages sent at the end of an event.
For each section the first row in each shows what the message will look like based on what has been entered in the second row. You'll notice in the second row that there are replaceable parameters in the message that use current information from the system to build the alarm message (so that $(SetPoint.ObjectName) in the Email Message & Voice Message sections will be replaced by the Name of the Setpoint. Just above each of the edit windows is a drop down labeled Insert reusable content that has selectors for all of these substitutions that are available for that particular item. If at any point you want to "reset" the message back to the default clear the content then select one of the "Default" messages (Analog, Discrete, Variance) from the drop down and the system will revert back to our standard message.
Note: If you switch from Use Custom Messaging back to Use Default Messaging the system will prompt you to verify you want to switch back.
Once you've got the color coding and messaging set the way you want, click the Summary button to review everything (shown below) then click Create Alarm Setpoint to save the changes and have the system start evaluating new data for events.
In this section we will cover a variety of things you might want to do not that you are using Alarm Setpoints in the application.
Alarms in the application may be Acknowledged. Acknowledging an Alarm takes the following actions:
- All Recipients who received the Alarm notification receive a notification that the Alarm was acknowledged, and by whom.
- Alarm indications on the Summary Listing (and elsewhere in the application) switch from Alarm color to Acknowledged color.
- Tiered Alarm messages from Alarm Schemes are stopped and no further escalation messages are sent.
Alarms may be Acknowledged from several locations within the application.
- Tag Details - Alarm Setpoints tab.
- Image View - Alarm Banner.
- Map View - Alarm Banner.
In addition you may Acknowledge and Alarm by:
- Replying to an Alarm Message received by Email.
- Selecting the Acknowledge option when prompted via a Voice alert.
- Replying to an Alarm Message received by Text. For Text messagtes you need to copy / paste at least the last line of the message (the line starting with EID: or REID:), although copying the entire message text works as well.
Forwarding Alarm Notifications
In the event an alarm recipient will be out temporarily, their notifications can be forwarded to another recipient. To forward notifications for a user, select User and Role Administration from the Users & Security section in the admin menu.
From the User and Role administration, find the recipient and select the to the right of their name and select Disable Notifications and the following screen will appear.
- Set the mode, either allowing a user to disable for a set duration of time or select between allowing you to choose the start and end dates and times.
- Set the Time Zone
- To set the forwarding to an alternate recipient check the box for Forward notifications for a specified timeframe.
- Select the alternate recipient as well as the Notification Method.
- Click save and the users notifications will be disabled and forwarded.
Note that now on the user card shows the forwarded notifications.
Alarm Setpoints may be disabled temporarily within the application. This can be useful for stopping nuisance alarms for things like scheduled maintenance, or while waiting for a repair on a faulty sensor.
To disable an Alarm Setpoint navigate to the Device Details or Tag Details screen and select the ALARM SETPOINTS tab. Click the More Actions button next to the Alarm Setpoint you wish to disabled and select Disable Alarm Setpoint from the menu.
The system will bring up the Disable Alarm Setpoint screen.
- Temporarily disable - You must check this box to acknowledge that this Alarm will not be evaluated during the time period set below.
- Select Mode - By default you enter a start time and a duration to disable an Alarm, switch this to Disable Between and the screen changes to let you enter separate Start and End times instead.
- Duration - Length of time for the Alarm to be disabled. (Only when using Disable For mode)
- Unit - Select between Hour, Day, Week, Month, or Year to tell the system how to interpret the Duration.
- Beginning - Click on this control and the system will bring up a Calendar control to allow you to set the time when the alarm should be disabled. (Defaults to immediatly). Note: if Disable Between is selected the Duration and Unit controls are removed and an End control will be shown to allow you to enter the time when the alarm should be re-enabled.
- Timezone - Select the timezone that should be used when evaluating the Beginning (and optionally Ending) times selected above.
For reference, the Calendar controls are slightly different on Mobile and Desktop.
Mobile uses three screens to allow you to pick the date, the hour, and the minutes values:
On the first screen select the Date, the system will advance to the next screen:
Tap on the AM/PM indicator to switch betwen settings, then click on the hour on the clock, or drag the hour pointer to the hour, the system will advance to the next screen:
Tap on the minute on the clock, or drag the minute pointer to the minute to select the appropriate time.
Note: To go back and correct any of the values you may click on the Date/Hour/Minute shown at the top of the window to return to that particular control. Once everything looks correct click OK to save the change.
On the Desktop presentation you may just type in the appropriate values for Month, Day, Year, Hours, Minutes, am/pm. Clicking the Calendar control to the right will allow you to set the Month, Day, and Year.
Note: You may NOT disable the setpoint for a Tag when it is in an active alarm state.
Unlinking an Alarm from a Tag
Removing an Alarm Setpoint from a Tag may be done from the More Options menu on either the Device Details or the Tag Details menu by selecting Unlink Tag from Alarm Setpoint from the menu. If this is the only tag using this setpoint the system will ask if you also wish to delete the Alarm Setpoint entirely.
You may also edit the Alarm Setpoint from the Alarm Setpoint Administration page in the Administration Tools and Add/Remove device tags from the Usage step. (See Alarm Usage (Selecting Devices and Tags) above)
From either the Device Details or Tag Details you may send Test notifications to all recipients by selecting Test Alarm Setpoint Notifications from the More Options button for the setpoint.
Viewing Alarm Setpoints
You may view a list of all setpoints for any Tag in the system by navigating to the Tag Details page for the tag and selecting the Alarm setpoints tab.
The color of the bell icon will indicate the current status of the Alarm, dark grey means the tag is not in alarm, otherwise the color will track the Alarm and Acknowledged colors you chose when you created the Alarm Setpoint.
For an Individual Device
You may view a list of all setpoints for any Device in the system by navigating to the Device Details page for the tag and selecting the Alarm setpoints tab.
The color of the bell icon will indicate the current status of the Alarm, dark grey means the tag is not in alarm, otherwise the color will track the Alarm and Acknowledged colors you chose when you created the Alarm Setpoint.
For all Devices in a Group
Navigate to the Group using the Hierarchy tool in the Main Menu then open Alarm Setpoint Administration from the Administrative Tools in the Main Menu.
For this view, you will see all Alarm Setpoints for every Device in the group, note that the coloring here will not indicate the difference between Alarm and Acknowledged Alarm as the Alarm Setpoint may be in use on multiple devices in different states. It will however show grey if NONE of the Devices in the group using a given Alarm Setpoint are currently in Alarm.
Viewing Alarm History
From either the Device Details or Tag Details pages select the HISTORY tab (on Mobile you can scroll the Tab bar by dragging it left or right). This tab shows a running history of Memos, Settings Changes, Alarms, Rules Engine Diagnostics, Rules Engine Data Quality Events, Form Entries, and Manual Event entries. To see only the Alarm History click the Options button and use the On/Off switches to show only the information you are interested in. To view only Alarms you would set the Options panel like this:
The eLynx application has an Alarm Dashboard that allows you to view and manage your alarms. This tool can help you find nuisance alarms, devices with potentially faulty hardware, and adjust the balance of alarm delivery between personnel to maximize efficiency and reduce alarm fatigue.
The tool can be accessed by selecting Alarm Dashboard from the Administration menu by clicking the Wrench icon, then selecting Alarm Dashboard in the Alarms & Notifications section of the Administration menu.
The dashboard will open and show the following screen which summarizes the five setpoints with the most alarms, the five devices with the most alarms, and the five most often used recipients for the last 24 hours. The dashboard also shows a timeline for the last 24 hours showing the number of alarm messages sent by e-mail, text messaging, and voice callout so you can see what time of day these alarms are occuring.
- These lists may not contain 5 entries if fewer matching items are found in the time period.
- These lists are filtered to the current group context when you activated the tool, you may switch groups with the drop down group selector in the upper left corner of the Alarm Dashboard.
The "blacked out" areas will contain a list of Setpoint Names, Device Names, and Recipient information, but are covered here to protect potentially sensitive information.
By clicking on the Options icon in the upper right corner you can change the date range included in the dashboard, or filter the types of notifications shown by checking and unchecking the boxes for "Text", "Email", and "Voice callout".
Clicking the "More Info" button in the upper right corner of each of the Top 5 charts will take you to a screen which shows all items for the time period organized from highest usage to lowest.
This sample screenshot has again been partially blacked out to protect potentially sensitive information. Down the left side you are show a list of "Setpoints", "Devices", or "Recipients" depending on which section you clicked the More Info button on. The section on the right shows a detailed listing of every alarm that has occurred in the time period.
By clicking on one of the entries on the left side you can filter the report to only show matching alarms.
From the main screen clicking on any of the pie chart slices, or the row in the table below the report will bring you to this same screen with the matching filter already applied.
Note: This dashboard is designed to help manage Alarm Notifications, alarm setpoints that have no notifications enabled are not included in this dashboard.
Alarm Notification Report
The eLynx application includes the ability to generate a comprehensive report of all alarm notifications sent over a given time period (default is last 24 hours) and allows for exporting that information to an Excel spreadsheet for further review and analysis. This tool, in combination with the Alarm Dashboard makes the eLynx system one of the easiest SCADA systems to manage nuisance alarms and operator fatigue.
The Alarm Notification Report may be accessed from the Administration Tools by clicking the Wrench icon and selecting Alarm Notifications Report from the Alarms & Notifications menu.
Once the screen appears clicking the Run button in the upper right corner will generate the report for the last 24 hours.
This report is very similar to the report shown in the Alarm Dashboard when you click the More Info button in one of the chart areas, but does includes the actual text of the messages sent (if any), and includes Alarms even if no messages were sent (no notifications configured, or notifications only triggered after a delay which was not, or has not yet been reached.)
You may also export this data to an Excel spreadsheet by clicking the Export button in the upper right corner of the screen. You do not need to run the report first if you only want the exported data.