Access farm equipment over network with Port Virtualization Technology

The way people produce food has dramatically changed over time. Dynamic farming technologies have been evolving in response to rapidly increasing demand for food and for feeding an ever-growing population. As a result, today we can observe highly mechanized crop and livestock production based on using advanced hardware and digital tools.

Modern agriculture and animal farms deploy numerous sophisticated equipment to address such problems as reducing pollution, maintaining the health of livestock and crops, promoting biodiversity, planning and carrying out agricultural operations, handling irrigation pivots, and many others.

To facilitate remote monitoring and maximize production output, specialized farm software and hardware need to be controlled by a single farm management system.

Farm Software Port Virtualization integration

The problem of farm data management

A well-established data management system is key to efficient planning and carrying out farm operations. The control function in such a system is usually performed by a dedicated farm software installed on a single data server. To get the required information, the server connects to farm devices like irrigation systems, electronic feeders, climate devices, etc. via serial ports so that the farm management software can collect data on the technical condition and performance of the equipment.

In case farm machines and hardware are located far from the single data center, there may be a need for remote access to the monitored devices. To make this possible, the data server and all required equipment are usually connected to a single network.

This, however, cannot guarantee that the devices will be able to communicate with each other and the data server. Obviously, to be able to access all equipment at a time regardless of its physical location, farm software needs to support a dedicated port virtualization technology that allows redirecting any USB or serial port over any distance.

The solution for remote access to farm equipment

Eltima Port Virtualization Technology (EPVT) is an efficient solution that can be easily implemented in farm equipment management systems. EPVT allows virtualizing USB and serial devices and redirecting them via network protocols. That means a single data center gets the ability to connect to all required equipment over LAN or the Internet and access their sensors as though the devices were physically attached to the server.

Eltima Port Redirection Technology is designed to provide any system with an unlimited number of virtual COM interfaces which completely emulate the behavior and parameters of real serial ports.

The solution for remote access to farm equipment

The port forwarding solution can be built into the operating system of farm equipment or integrated into farm management systems. What's more, with the custom development option offered by Eltima Software, you’ll be able to implement the technology of serial port virtualization in a system of any level.

By integrating EPVT into farm software, manufacturers and developers of farm management systems get the following benefits:

  1. The ability to create a fully-functioning system for managing equipment of any complexity and send data to a single database.
  2. A qualitative improvement of the end product, the opportunity to open new market segments.
  3. Gaining a competitive advantage by providing solutions for more efficient and productive operation of the whole control system.
Farm devices (thermometers, scales, etc.) transmit their data to a dedicated farm software. The software serves for logging, monitoring, forecasting, and performing many other specific tasks. Since the sensor devices are located in one place, and the server with the software in another, the devices need to transport all the data to the remote server so that the server can receive it via a virtual COM port. Eltima Port Redirection Technology allowed creating multiple virtual serial interfaces in a remote system, thus making it possible for the devices and the data server to communicate over the network.

Feedlot Health

We develop Windows software for farming equipment communication. We need it to work with the other software, which uses the serial port. So, Port Virtualization Technology became the solution we've been searching for. Without any doubts, we got a bunch of benefits from Eltima's solution.

Dataväxt AB

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