The Merbon IDE development environment supports standard communication protocols, such as M-Bus, Modbus, or IEC62056-21, and BACnet/IP at selected platforms. Some applications, however, require integration of a third-party device using a proprietary protocol over a serial line or Ethernet. Merbon IDE allows development of customized drivers in the ST programming language, which bring more flexibility and independence to the software engineers.
The protocol drivers in Merbon IDE can be divided into following groups:
Native drivers supported in Merbon IDE: They are part of the IDE and are configured by adding a communication channel and defining the required driver from the list. Driver properties, such as baudrate and addresses, are set in the property grid. Native drivers are fully supported by Domat, and their updates are part of the new Merbon IDE releases. The drivers source codes are part of Merbon IDE source codes and are not available to the public.
ST drivers written by Domat on demand: if a customer needs to develop a new driver, there is the protocol description available, and the development is technically feasible, Domat can write the driver in ST language as a paid service. The customer gets a complete, fully commented source code which is fully at his disposal. The invoiced sum does not fully cover the development costs, and therefore the source code is a property of Domat Control System. Domat may decide to make the driver available to the public, including its source codes (or part of it), at the web forum, so that also other Merbon IDE users may take advantage of it. Domat is not responsible for keeping the driver updated nor for a full functionality of the published code, as third-party systems may be subject to updates, and Domat is not able to follow these changes and keep the drivers up to date continuously.
ST drivers written by customer: The code is sole property of the customer, who decides if the code will be available to public or not; if it will be published for free or on a paid basis, and if so, if on his web pages, on the Domat forum, or anywhere else; if any support will be provided for the code, and if so, if the support shall be paid or free of charge, etc. The same rules as for an ordinary application program apply.
Similar rules apply for the Modbus devices in Merbon IDE – predefined templates with variables for a particular third-party devices, such as energy meters, zone controllers, variable speed drives, I/O modules, etc. The devices may be copied so as to be available in the Modbus channel context menu – they can be found in C:\Users\All Users\Merbon\IDE (version)\HwLibrary\Modbus.