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How To Upgrade Your SCADA Equipment At Little To No Cost

By Ziad Alezabi

March 1, 2024


It is logical and natural to only buy what you need for your current existing network when you shop for SCADA systems and hardware.

You either don't have the money to spend, or you would rather allocate your budget to another part of your business.

This is only a problem if you are not backed by the proper SCADA systems manufacturer that allows you to scale your monitoring, and control abilities as your facilities grow.

You can tell if have a good SCADA systems manufacturer by asking yourself just two questions:

  1. Is your monitoring lagging behind the network's expansion rate?
  2. Does your manufacturer make it easy for you to get the benefits of their latest equipment?

If you answered yes to the first question and no to the second question, it's time to consider switching manufacturers.

Let's take a look at 2 different Use Cases where DPS prioritized the client's scalability by making their newest upgrades available to them.

Beware of manufacturers that make it too hard for you to upgrade your system that you got from them.

A good SCADA systems manufacturer understands that their product is their reputation, and will want to equip all their clients with optimal equipment.

Cutting Big Upgrade Installation Costs In Half

We've done a complete upgrade across 90 sites for

Recently we updated a total of 90 RTUs across 90 sites as a project for Adesta, a client that we helped monitor HVACS with our products and services.

My contact at Adesta let me know that the RTU site upgrades were for state police departments as the end user.

They were working with an RTU that didn't have ethernet capabilities and ended up upgrading to the NetGuardian 864.

The NetGuardian 864 upgrade came with many benefits not limited to but including:

  1. Remote monitoring via Ethernet
  2. Taking advantage of the 30% off trade-in upgrade program.
  3. Gaining web interfacing as opposed to the previous RTU. No extra software is needed.
  4. Technical overviews & application drawings.

The newly upgraded NetGuardians across the 90 sites now have quick and reliable communication protocols like SNMPv3.

The installation came with extra options customized to the new NetGuardians. The main priority of the upgrade was to integrate Ethernet capabilities in their RTUs.

This was done over a 4-port Ethernet Switch with one uplink Ethernet port that connected all RTUs to one central master station via microwave radio for a centralized monitoring approach.

Mid-sized Installations Still Save A Lot

The next project was a mid-sized installation for propane tank monitoring.

My client is an international telephone company located in Kentucky. They wanted to monitor their fuel tanks with a propane sensor package and upgrade their RTUs to NetGuardian M16 G2s across 35 different sites.

The NetGuardian M16 G2 is a mid-sized IP-based RTU. It is responsible for collecting critical site information and reporting it to either a T/Mon (Master Station) or an SNMP manager.

The NetGuardian M16 G2 provides 16 discrete alarm inputs, 6 analog inputs, and 2 or 18 control relays -- all in a 1-rack unit of space.

This would allow them to set trigger points for their alarms including live propane levels through a web browser interface.

This would also enable them to have more efficient refueling at the sites. This means you no longer have to travel to a remote site just to check fuel levels.

When they migrated to the NetGuardian M16 G2, they were able to:

  1. Interface with alarm inputs due to pin compatibility. Backward integration is just as important as forward integration.
  2. A web interface for technicians to view and configure alarms. No extra software was required.
  3. A 30% credit program for trade-ins that ultimately saved them more than $25,000.

This also supported SNMPv3 among other secure communication protocol capabilities.

DPS Telecom Can Integrate Upgraded Hardware With No Downtime

DPS Telecom's 30% trade-in discount helps our clients not have a second thought about upgrading their hardware and keeping up with their growing operations.

30% RTU Upgrade Credit
Get 30% off a new RTU by sending in an old one

The unfortunate truth about DPS technology is that it evolves too quickly, and lasts forever. We often have clients that give us the "If it's not broke, don't fix it" mentality.

However, even though it still works after 15 years in the field, there are way better RTU alternatives that we constantly come out with to expand our clients' remote monitoring and relay ability.

We also empower our clients to continuously upgrade their equipment for the following benefits:

  1. Quick installations because of pin-for-pin compatibility
  2. Gaining or maintaining backward compatibility
  3. Opening up to integration with newer technology
  4. Using newer and more efficient technology that leads to lowering costs, and rising profits.

DPS Telecom's upgrade program is flexible:

  • If you have a NetGuardian that is 15 years old and want the newest model, we still allow it.
  • If you have a NetGuardian that is completely ruined and want a trade-in for a new one, we still allow it.

We obviously want our clients' operations to succeed, because your success speaks for our success.

The unfortunate news is: You can't keep your network monitoring capabilities in the hands of the same technology forever.

The good news is: We are here to apply your existing investment towards your future growth. We want you to use DPS Telecom like your own personal engineer.

"Sales" treatment from technical support A customer, as it relates to dealing with a vendor, can sometimes have an experience that is not too pleasant. However, this is not the case with DPS. I have never called on any of your people without being treated in the most friendly and courteous manner. You are to be commended for the culture you have engendered with your folks at DPS. A customer can normally expect this type of treatment when dealing with sales. What's really amazing is that I experience the same treatment when dealing with your service people- I've never been told. "This is not our problem." Honestly, on several occasions, it wasn't your problem, but a case of the "dumbs" on my part. Your people always guided me to the solution of the problem, regardless of "whose" problem it was. - R. Boston - GA

If you have any questions about our discounts, applications, or services, then please feel free to call me.

Even if we can't reach a compromise together, I would still love to help point you in the right direction.

Call me at 1-800-622-3314 or E-mail me at sales@dpstele.com

Ziad Alezabi

Ziad Alezabi

Ziad Alezabi is a Application Documentarian at DPS Telecom. He reviews successful DPS client projects and reports on the best practices that you can use to successfully reach your own project goals.

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