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LabOne Software Architecture

Zurich Instruments devices use a server-based connectivity methodology. Server-based means that all communication between the user and the instrument takes place via a computer program called the LabOne Data Server. The Data Server recognizes available instruments and manages all communication between the instrument and the host computer on one side, and communication to all the connected clients on the other side. This allows for:

  • A multi-client configuration: Multiple interfaces (even from multiple computers on the network) can access the settings and data on an instrument. Settings are synchronized between all interfaces by the single instance of the Data Server.
  • A multi-device setup: Any of the Data Server's clients can access multiple devices

This software architecture is organized in multiple layers as illustrated in the schematic below:

Application Layer
User Interface Browser
Native Communication
Interface Layer
LabOne Python API
LabOne C API
LabOne Webserver API
LabOne Core Library
Network Communication
Server Layer
LabOne Data Server
Physical Communication
Instrument Layer
Instrument 1
Instrument 2
Instrument n

Choice of APIs

Whether you prefer working with C, Python, MATLAB, or LabVIEW, LabOne supports all of these programming languages. Also the APIs are compatible across all instruments. That means that the software you write for one instrument can be seamlessly transferred to another one.

Native structures

LabOne provides APIs that are based on native data structures for an efficient interface between the measurement instrument and the programming environment. This provides up to 100 times faster transfer rates compared to old style text (ASCII) interfacing.

Core library

A library of elements (LabOne Core Library) allows users to program their own user interfaces and to quickly integrate complex function groups (eg. sweeper or spectrum analyzer). Minimal effort is required to switch from the UI to API programming.

Concurrent APIs

Clients can connect to the same instrument at the same time thanks to server-based communication, the LabOne Data Server. The LabOne Data Server also ensures tht instrument settings are synchronized between all the connected clients.

Virtual instruments

The server-based architecture allows the combination of more than one instrument into the same user interface. A custom program can collect different tools from different instruments and implement a virtual instrument within the same window.

Programming made easy

Instead of worrying how to implement complex functions like a frequency sweeper, the Core Library module lowers the barriers as it provides a strong functionality framework that does not differ from the version in the LabOne User Interface.

Bidirectional APIs

APIs allow the storage and reloading of data. Data saved can also be reloaded and analyzed offline with the same tools as used for data acquisition. This results in an impressive efficiency increase and simplified ways of working.

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