The Publisheris the PubSubentity that sends NetworkMessagesto a Message Oriented Middleware. It represents a certain information source, for example, a control device, a manufacturing process, a weather station, or a stock exchange.

Commonly, a Publisheris also an OPC UA Server. For the abstract PubSubconcepts, however, it is an arbitrary entity and should not be assumed to be an individual or even a specific network node (an IP or a MAC address) or a specific application. A Publishermay consist of one or more network nodes sending messages and management node(s) responding to discovery probe messages and providing an OPC UA Serverfor configuration and diagnostics.

Figure 5illustrates a Publisherwith data collection, encoding and message sending.

image008.png

Figure 5– Publisher details

A single Publishermay support multiple PublishedDataSetsand multiple DataSetWritersto one or more Message Oriented Middleware. A DataSetWriteris a logical component of a Publisher. See 5.4.1.2for further information about the DataSetwriting process.

If the Publisheris an OPC UA Server, it can expose the Publisherconfiguration in its AddressSpace. This information may be created through product-specific configuration tools or through the OPC UA defined Methods. The OPC UA Information Modelfor PubSubconfiguration is specified in Clause 9.

Figure 6illustrates the process inside a Publisherwhen creating and sending messages and the parameters required to accomplish it. The components, like DataSetcollection or DataSetWritershould be considered abstract. They may not exist in every Publisheras independent entities. However, comparable processes need to exist to generate the OPC UA PubSubmessages.

image009.png

Figure 6– Publisher message sending sequence

The sending process is guided by different parameters for different logical steps. The parameters define for example when and how often to trigger the sending sequence and the encoding and security of the messages. The PubSub communication parameters are defined in Clause 6.

The first step is the collection of data (DataSet) to be published. The configuration for such a collection is called PublishedDataSet. The PublishedDataSetalso defines the DataSetMetaData. Collection is a generic expression for various different options, like monitoring of Variablesin an OPC UA Server AddressSpace, processing OPC UA Events, or for example reading data from network packets. In the end, the collection process produces values for the individual fields of a DataSet. The two concrete PublishedDataSetoptions with standard OPC UA configuration are PublishedDataItemsfor Variablebase collection and PublishedEventsfor Eventbased collection.

In the next step, a DataSetWritertakes the DataSetand creates a DataSetMessage. DataSetMessagesfrom DataSetWritersin one WriterGroupcan be inserted into a single NetworkMessage. The creation of a DataSetMessage is guided by the following parameters:

The resulting DataSetMessageis passed on to the next step together with the DataSetWriterId(see 6.2.4.1), the DataSetClassId(see 6.2.3.3), the ConfigurationVersionof the DataSetMetaData(see 6.2.3.2.5), and a list of values that match the configured propagated fields.

Next is the creation of the NetworkMessage. It uses the data provided from the previous step together with the PublisherId(see 6.2.7.1) defined on the PubSubConnection. The structure of this message is protocol specific. If the SecurityMode(see 6.2.5.2) requires message security, the SecurityGroupId(see 6.2.5.3) is used to fetch the SecurityPolicyand the security keys from the SKS (see 5.4.4). This information is used to encrypt and/or sign the NetworkMessageas required by the SecurityMode.

The final step is delivery of the NetworkMessageto the Message Oriented Middlewarethrough the configured Address.