FITS on course for end-of-year release

21 September 2019

A final review of the emerging FDT 3.0 technology platform, known as the FDT IIoT Server (FITS) standard has been completed by the FDT Group and, according to Lee Lane, chairman of the FDT Board of Directors, the FITS specification remains on schedule for an end of year release.

Because industrial solutions tend to stay in service for such long periods of time, FDT leadership defined use cases to investments for the future – this includes platform independence, a comprehensive security solution, OPC UA integration, mobile device management, and a repository for DTMs. While there are a host of other important features included, all these requested use cases have taken shape within the emerging FITS platform. 

Within a FITS architecture, the FDT Server becomes the pivotal IIoT hub empowering the intelligent enterprise.  The Server boasts a web services portal allowing access from authenticated mobile devices or any major browser along with an OPC UA interface for IT/OT convergence and enterprise access. 

Additionally, rich control features will allow any industrial communication protocol or vendor device to be seamlessly integrated, supporting smart manufacturing practices for the process, hybrid and discrete industries. Developed from the ground up with security at its core and an operating system agnostic environment, an FDT Server is fully deployable in the cloud, on-premise, edge or in a desktop environment.  

With more than 10 million DTMs and several hundred thousand FDT/FRAME-enabled applications currently deployed and in use it was vital to preserve the FDT legacy installed base investment and as the vendor community advances its FDT-enabled applications and system offerings all legacy DTMs will function in a single user Microsoft FDT Desktop environment updated to the FITS standard. It will be possible to freely mix FDT 1.2.x, 2.0, 2.1 and 3.0 DTMs within a desktop application. Users planning to continue to use a desktop application are advised to check with their system providers about their update plans for that application.

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