Frequently Asked Questions

Welcome to our FAQ page! Here, we provide answers to commonly asked questions about WebIQ.

Does the machine require a permanent internet connection?

There is no need for an internet connection to run WebIQ Runtime. The runtime system does not require an Internet connection after you set up your HMI project.

HMIs are created and edited using WebIQ Designer, which uses floating licenses that require an internet connection. It is possible to check out floating licenses for up to 30 days for offline use.

Is it possible to get all my tags, texts, and alarms into WebIQ?

1. Tags / Items

Depending on the size of your project, there are several options:

  • Add the tags/items manually
  • With the built-in OPC UA browser, you can import tags and methods directly from your PLC
  • To import XML exports from the PLC (e.g. Siemens S7 and others) into WebIQ, use the free importer.

2. Texts / Localizations

WebIQ supports an unlimited number of localizations (languages) and texts. The following options are available:

  • Add localizations and text manually.
  • Import and export localizations as CSV and JSON file (to export for the translation and to import for the translated texts)

3. Alarms

WebIQ has its own alarm management system where you can define the alarm conditions and raise alarms of type information, warning, or alarm. You can create these in one of the following ways:

  • Manually create an alarm in the Alarm Manager
  • You can import alarm definitions from CSV format (download available here for registered users).

Floating licenses - what are they and how do they work?

A floating license is one that is not bound by any physical device. It is delivered as a license key that has to be entered in WebIQ Designer to unlock it.

As soon as WebIQ Designer is started, it requests a temporary license from WebIQ cloud services based on that license key. In the case of a floating license that is not in use, a temporary license will be granted that can be used as long as WebIQ Designer is open.

The license is returned to the WebIQ cloud services when WebIQ Designer is closed, for example, when you are finished using it for the day. It updates the WebIQ cloud services every few minutes that it still uses the corresponding license, so others cannot use it.

On the device where WebIQ Designer is to be used, there must be a permanent internet connection. In case you need to use WebIQ Designer offline, you can check out a floating license for up to 30 days - you choose how long to check it out for. After the license has been checked out, no internet connection is required to use WebIQ Designer, however the temporary offline license is irrevocable until it has expired. After that it can be used again on other devices.

Can my ARM device run WebIQ?

The answer depends on the combination of the ARM processor and the operating system on the device as ARM is a processor architecture and not an operating system.

For ARM devices, only Linux is supported (you cannot use WebIQ on Windows 10 IoT Core on ARM, for example).

Officially WebIQ only supports Raspberry Pi with Raspberry Pi OS because it is an ARM system with a defined hardware and software and is tested with each release.

Try using the 32 or 64 bit version of WebIQ for Raspberry Pi on your ARM system to see if it works.

For WebIQ to be licensed on an ARM system, the Linux device tree needs to have a unique ID since WebIQ runtime licenses are hardware-bound. Our expectation is that the serial-number field (/sys/firmware/devicetree/base/serial-number) contains a unique identifier for each device. Using the DeviceTree on ARM SoC on Linux is mandatory since 2012.

How does WebIQ support MQTT?

By default, WebIQ supports OPC-UA, which is fully open standards-based. The payload content can be in any format, but the MQTT format is defined.
WebIQ offers a free MQTT-to-OPC-UA server that maps MQTT messages with JSON payloads to local OPC-UA items so that they can be used with WebIQ easily.

Is ModBus supported by WebIQ?

By default, WebIQ supports OPC-UA, which is a fully open standard. WebIQ provides a free ModBus-to-OPC-UA server for use with ModBus/ModBus TCP.

Does WebIQ offer proprietary drivers for my non-OPC-UA PLC?

Since WebIQ is an open system, it is limited to supporting the open standard OPC-UA by default. Switching to OPC-UA whenever possible is recommended, since it gives you the ability to easily swap your PLC for one from a different manufacturer, which might be more cost-effective (this is probably why some PLC manufacturers charge high licensing fees to enable OPC-UA on their systems in order to prevent customers from switching suppliers easily).

There are a lot of proprietary drivers available for PLCs in other HMI systems, which should not be viewed as a feature, but as a sign that the underlying PLC system is not open.

Depending on what's possible for your system, here are the alternatives if your PLC or data source does not offer OPC-UA:

  • ModBus
  • MQT
  • Custom IO Handler (written in C++ by you or other party)
  • Custom Server Extension written in NodeJS (JavaScript) that maps the proprietary protocol to OPC-UA

Is it possible to create custom widgets?

With WebIQ, you can create custom widgets using HTML5, CSS, and JavaScript. You can find information on that in the documentation. In this way, you are not reliant on Beijer Electronics and can create your own widgets and libraries, use them in as many projects as you like, and even sell them. WebIQ aims to be the open system that enables users to build custom HMIs as easily as possible.

Is WebIQ capable of displaying trend data?

Trend display widgets are available by default in WebIQ. A new generation of trend widgets is available from WebIQ (2.13) which offers improved functionality and new features.

How do I setup and configure my runtime system?

For that purpose, WebIQ Runtime is used, which is both a web server and an OPC UA client that connects the PLC with the browser.

Using the WebIQ System & License Manager in the browser, you can configure and license WebIQ on the local system - http://localhost:10123/.

It allows you to manage licenses, configure logging settings, add and edit system users, configure listen (HTTP/HTTPS) ports, and configure browser caches.

In addition more configuration is possible by using the configuration tool on the command line. Remote configuration of the server is also possible via the local network from a WebIQ Designer instance, as well as uploading and downloading WebIQ projects and starting and stopping HMI projects in the WebIQ Runtime.

How do I setup and configure my runtime system?

To accomplish this, WebIQ Runtime, which is both a web server and OPC UA client, is used.

Open the WebIQ System &License Manager on the corresponding system in the browser to configure and license it - for the local system, use http://localhost:10123/.

It allows you to manage licenses, configure logging settings, add and edit system users, configure listen (HTTP/HTTPS) ports, and configure browser caches.

A configuration tool on the command line is also available for more configuration options. Additionally, a remote connection via the local network is available from the WebIQ Designer instance, allowing you to configure the server and to upload and download WebIQ projects, as well as start and stop HMI projects.

My trial license has expired. Is it possible to extend it?

You will receive a 30-day free trial license key when you sign up for WebIQ Designer. This license key is only intended for evaluation purposes. Our team will be happy to provide more trial licenses to you if these 30 days are not sufficient for you to evaluate WebIQ.

Is WebIQ capable of embedding my camera, video stream, etc.?

In fact, the question should be rephrased as “Does my camera or video stream provide a web-compatible format? ”

As WebIQ uses 100% open web technologies you can embed any content you can embed on any website. WebIQ does not use any proprietary plugins, so it cannot embed more than any other website.

In the case of cameras, please refer to the corresponding manual to determine whether you can embed the camera stream in a website. Normally, an HTML snippet can be embedded in a WebIQ HMI using the HTML5 widget.

Is it possible to embed something like Google Maps in my HMI?

Online maps can be embedded just like anything else you can embed on a website.

If you intend to use online maps, please keep in mind that any device displaying such a map requires an internet connection. Rather than a limitation of WebIQ, this is a limitation of the map provider.

Furthermore, Google and most other providers only provide a limited amount of free map views before requiring payments.

Is it possible to run WebIQ in a Docker container?

A Docker container can run WebIQ Server (the application server for WebIQ Runtime). A dockerized WebIQ Server can be created using docker-compose with our free package.

Can I use my own (corporate) fonts in my HMI?

For web use, fonts must be available in certain web font formats. Most font vendors offer web fonts as well. Web fonts can be embedded in WebIQ using simple custom CSS.

You should be aware that if your (corporate) font is a premium commercial font, using it on an HMI might imply license fees that have to be paid to the font vendor per machine shipped. Refer to the font license for more information.

A good alternative would be Google Fonts - especially when used locally.

Does WebIQ Designer also work on Linux, Mac, etc.?

Currently, WebIQ Designer is only available for Windows, and that is unlikely to change soon. A Windows and Linux version of the WebIQ Runtime (as well as a Docker version) is available.

For encrypted HTTPS connections, does WebIQ support SSL/TLS encryption?

WebIQ supports both HTTP and HTTPS connections. TLS 1.2 and 1.3 are supported, support for previous versions has been dropped for security reasons.

Due to security concerns, SSL support has been removed.

What technologies does WebIQ use?

The following technologies are used by WebIQ:

  • WebIQ HMIs: HTML5, CSS, JavaScript
  • WebIQ Server/Runtime: web server (HTTP, HTTPS) including websockets and OPC-UA client
  • WebIQ Designer: stand-alone executable

Which web browsers does WebIQ support?

In the changelog, you can find a list of browsers supported by each version of WebIQ.

Browsers that are not supported:

  • Internet Explorer (any version)
  • Microsoft Edge <= 78
  • Java WebView

You can find out your current browser and version by simply asking Google from the device you are interested in:

Does WebIQ Run On VxWorks?

VxWorks is a proprietary RTOS (real-time operating system) and is not supported by WebIQ.

What is a single-page application (SPA)?

All web HMIs and apps created with WebIQ are single-page web applications (single-page application, SPA for short).

Usually when you go from let’s say this page to the page “About us” in the navigation bar the whole content of the website will be replaced by the contents of the new website. This behavior is acceptable for normal websites. Reloading the entire content whenever you want to change just a small part of a website (such as updating widget status) is just not feasible, time-consuming and wasteful if a website (such as a web HMI) is used for a long period of time.

For such cases - GMAIL being the best known - single-page applications (SPA) have been developed that only load and change certain parts of the website when the user interacts with them. By doing so, the software appears to be usable like any other local application such as Microsoft Word, eliminating the distinction between installed and web applications.

SPAs also store the application status in the Web client. As a result, applications with a large number of content pages and areas can be created that resemble established desktop applications in design.

Besides WebIQ, many well-known web frameworks are based on SPA architecture, including Angular, React, Knockout, Vue and many more. Many web-based services have now been implemented as SPAs, including Office 365 in the browser, GMAIL, and many backend interfaces.

With Linux, how can I save on license costs?

WebIQ Server (WebIQ Runtime) is written in the C++ programming language and is portable to various operating systems. Besides Windows, the server is also available for Linux.

Because of its small size, WebIQ can also be used on small devices such as Raspberry Pi and similar ARM systems.
To evaluate custom builds of cross-platform applications or Linux distributions not available yet, please contact our sales department.

Can I create my own JavaScripts and CSS classes?

You can use the embedded code editor to write custom JavaScript code as well as CSS classes for specific design adaptations. With the LocalScript widget, arbitrary JavaScript code can be executed within the HMI.

For web developers it is also possible to edit and test the projects created with WebIQ with an editor or a development IDE and then re-edit them with WebIQ Designer.

How can I add extensions to WebIQ?

You can add or update custom web-based extensions to an HMI project using WebIQ's built-in package manager. These packages can contain the following:

  • Custom template applications (“app starters”)
  • Custom themes / responsive designs
  • Custom widgets and libraries (JavaScript, icons, …..)
  • LocalScripts and UI-Actions (JavaScript code)

Package management includes built-in versioning so that updated packages can be detected and the affected Web HMI projects updated.

Where does WebIQ store its data?

Historical alarms, process values, recipes, etc. are all stored in an embedded SQLite database that allows external data access tools (e.g. ODBC drivers, Node.js, etc.) to access them transparently. You can define the retention time for alarms and historical process data in order to scale the required storage space.

By using a standard SQLite ODBC driver, you can easily access historical WebIQ data and import it into other databases such as MySQL, MariaDB, PostgreSQL, and Microsoft SQL Server.

How much data can WebIQ store?

WebIQ stores all recorded data in an SQLite database.
There is a maximum database limit of 281 TB for a SQLite database. Data can be recorded in multiple recorders, and each recorder can store up to 281 TB - provided your underlying disk has this capacity.

What kind of databases does WebIQ support?

The default database used by WebIQ is a local embedded SQLite database. Please contact us if you need to connect to other databases like MSSQL (MS-SQL), Oracle, InfluxDB, etc. This isn't available by default, but please contact us if it's a must for your project.

Is WebIQ a new product?

In 2012, WebIQ was released in its first version (only web framework). In response to user demand for drag-and-drop interfaces without coding, WebIQ Designer was launched later.