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Wi-Fi Adapter, recommendations?


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The project I've been working with has an unmanaged switch, and thus has not been connected to our network.  While searching for a solution to another issue involving the USB Host ports, I believe I read that a typical wifi adapter can be connected to the PLC.  Is there specific hardware that is suggested?


I'm looking to use it for MQTT pub and sub, mostly, possibly VNC.


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  • MVP 2014

One option for WiFi is the Moxa AWK1137 (disclosure - my company is a Moxa distributor, as well as Unitronics).  It's not the cheapest device that can do this but is designed for long-term reliability in an industrial environment and is well supported.

You say the system already has an unmanaged switch "and thus has not been connected to our network".  I'm not sure exactly what you mean by that.  The fact that the switch is unmanaged doesn't immediately explain why it can't be connected to the network.  I assume you can't connect to the network becuase the existing switch is a cabled switch and you need wireless - is that the case?

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I am familiar with Moxa.  I will take a look into that.

The system integrator who built this system years ago put in an unmanaged, wired switch.  We had SEW Movitracs which were Ethernet/IP (I believe), and the URB-TCP. 


His response to an email regarding connecting the PLC to our network was that it would require a managed switch.  Maybe something with IP address assignment???

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  • MVP 2023
2 hours ago, Dancho said:

it would require a managed switch.

That is such an Allen Bradley answer.  The conventional wisdom in AB Land is you have to buy their network products if you want everything to work right.  Mo' money, mo' money.....

I've done AB jobs with drives and Ethernet I/P works fine with a regular switch.  I do use "industrial" switches as opposed to the ones you get from Best Buy.  It really depends on whether you have different subnets configured and if you are trying to reach other subnets in the plant and filter IP addresses.  Then you need a managed switch and knowledge of how to set it up.  If you keep the first three octets in the IP address the same (and there are no conflicting IP addresses - yes, I have made that error) then it should work.

As far as WiFi goes, Simon's recommendation is a good product.  I use products from these guys - https://www.radiolabs.com/.

Joe T.


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