March 2013
Interview

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EMAIL INTERVIEW Wayne Tighe and Ken Sinclair

Wayne Tighe, Vice President of Sales, Tridium




End-of-life for Niagara Release 2


When Niagara R2 came to market in 1999, it was revolutionary software that changed the way buildings could be managed.



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Sinclair: We’ve been hearing buzz about the end-of-life for Niagara Release 2.  What’s the story there?

Tighe: When Niagara R2 came to market in 1999, it was revolutionary software that changed the way buildings could be managed.  But this software product released 14 years ago has grown long in the tooth.  NiagaraAX is such a different environment and enables so much more that we need to move customers to the next step.

Sinclair: So does this end-of-life announcement affect any NiagaraAX products?

Tighe: No, it doesn’t apply to any NiagaraAX releases or versions.

Sinclair: Which products are affected by this transition?

Tighe: The JACE-501, JACE-502, JACE-511, JACE-512, JACE-403 and JACE-545 platforms are the affected platforms. 

With respect to the JACE-403 and JACE-545, we have released two replacement boards – the RB-603 and RB-645 that can be easily swapped out.  You don’t have to replace the entire JACE and enclosure – just unscrew and unplug the old board and screw in and plug in the new board.  It really is that simple.  These replacement boards support both Niagara R2 and Niagara AX applications.  This will optionally allow the end customer to continue to utilize the Niagara R2 application while the Niagara AX replacement is being engineered. 

We have also released the JACE-603 and JACE-645 products which include the metal enclosure like the original Jace-403 and JACE-545.  These products can be used to replace the older JACE-510, JACE-502, JACE-511, and JACE-512 platforms.  Like the replacement boards, these products support both Niagara R2 and Niagara AX applications. 

Sinclair: So what are the advantages of using these boards?

Tighe: First and foremost, you’ll be able to take advantage of greater processing power and significantly larger memory, both Flash and RAM.  The RB-6 products also have two 10/100 ethernet ports (instead of one), an expansion option card slot that can support dual RS-485, RS-232 or a LonWorks FTT-10 port.

Sinclair: But won’t your customers have to go through this again when Niagara 4 is released?

Tighe: No, not at all.  The RB products are designed to work with Niagara 4 when released.  And that is another advantage of migrating from R2 to AX – we already know that R2 products will not be supported in Niagara 4 when released.

Sinclair: What is the timetable for this?

Tighe: After June 30, no more new projects will be allowed to use Niagara R2.  At the end of 2014, December 31, 2014 to be exact, Tridium will end distribution of all new Niagara R2 products with only replacements being allowed.  Tridium will end distribution on all R2 products including repairs or replacements on December 31, 2015.   That means no more technical support on these products either.

Sinclair: What information do you need for a customer to migrate from R2 to AX?

Tighe: We need three pieces of information:

Model number of the currently installed product
Current product serial numbers and Host ID
List of all drivers currently licensed on the platform

If the customer needs help in retrieving this information, our sales support team is ready to help guide them through the process.

Control Solutions, Inc Sinclair: What do customers receive in return?

Tighe: Customers will receive a replacement circuit board with a NiagaraAX license with the equivalent features of the replaced board.  Additionally, the customer can request an optional R2 license with the same features.  All software needed to perform an R2 replacement will be pre-installed at the factory.  No commissioning is required prior to installing the end-use’s Niagara R2 application.

The newer Niagara AX (3.6.47 or higher) platform tools include a Niagara R2 Admin Tool which functions just like the original Niagara R2 Admin Tool.  In addition, the installation of the Niagara R2 application is a simple wizard based process.

Sinclair: But what if a customer doesn’t migrate over to AX by December 31, 2015?

Tighe: We’re not leaving customers out to dry – we will release the R2 software tools at no charge to anyone.  While Tridium may no longer be supporting Niagara R2, there are many within the Niagara community who will be able to assist.


TridiumTALK - Migrating from R2 to AX
 
MARCH TOPIC:
Migration from Niagara R2 to Niagara AX

Attend the March TridiumTALK and learn about the transition plan from R2 to AX and how you can best prepare for the impending transition.  Join Rick Weisensale, Tridium senior product manager, as he reviews the best way to transition from R2 to AX.

Tridium will offer two sessions of this TridiumTALK. 
TUESDAY, MARCH 5th at 10:00am EST
THURSDAY, MARCH 7th at 2:00pm EST

Visit http://www.tridium.com/cs/tridium_news/tridiumtalk for dial in information and more.

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