Communication Protocol Test Harness

The Test Harness is a powerful tool for testing DNP3, IEC 60870-5, and Modbus devices.


  • Simulate Master or Outstation Devices.
  • Monitor Communications.
  • Create Custom Functional Tests with any .NET programming language, Python, or Tcl/Tk scripts.
  • Exercise a device as it will be used on the utility SCADA network.
  • Automatically Perform Conformance Test Procedures.

Custom Functional Tests

  • Commands may be executed individually or all run as a sequence. Conditional command sequences can be used to automatically test specific DUT functionality.
    • Clicking on the button next to the command description executes the command. The command description may be user modified.
    • A “progress bar” gives graphic indication for time of next command execution when in repeat interval mode.
    • A Validate Points Command verifies the device returned the expected data values.
    • Drag & Drop (or cut/paste) to change Command Order or copy/move to another command window.
    • Use custom Tcl commands or any .NET programming language (VB, C#, J#, etc.) to provide functionality not covered by existing commands.

Monitor Communications

  • Analyze communication using extensive filter options and customized colors/fonts/indentation on both real-time and capture buffers.
  • Passively monitor serial or TCP/IP connections.  Monitoring serial communications requires a Serial Monitor Cable.
  • Parse and interpret a sequence of bytes captured outside the Test Harness.
    • A scroll back buffer with search function provides for easy examination of previous exchanges.
    • Save/restore or copy/paste protocol analyzer output for post-capture analysis.

Perform Conformance Tests

  • Performs the official Conformance Test Procedures published by the Technical Committees of each protocol.
  • Useful as a periodic regression test during continued product development or in preparation for third party conformance testing.

1. Trigger necessary changes in device inputs by: 

  • Voltage/current source such as
  • OMICRON CMC156/256
  • DNP Virtual Terminal message
  • Custom Tcl command
  • User dialog box
2. Steps in test procedure are listed in both the procedure window and protocol analyzer.

View Data from Devices

  • View data from remote or simulated devices.
  • Data window provides graphical view of database points and values.
    • Create custom views of critical data by hiding unnecessary rows.
    • Right click menus allow easy modification of channels, sessions, sectors, and slave session data points.
    • User-defined point descriptions, as well as all other configuration data, are saved in a workspace file. The entire setup can then be easily restored as required.
    • Load an actual field database point map including point descriptions from spreadsheet or text file.

Simulate Devices

  • Simulate master or slave devices.
  • Simulate communications to a large number of devices. Multiple Slave sessions can be active at one time.
    • When simulating a Master device, easily configured command windows allow commands to be sent once or repeated at desired intervals.
    • A Functional front panel may be used to change data values, or a timed operation can simulate periodic data changes.
    • New simulators may be added to the Test Harness by duplicating one of the sample simulators provided.

What’s New

Current Release: v3.16.01
Release Date:  September 2013

Newest Features in this Release

  • Added support for negative control point offset.
  • Allows a user to delete the default user and then open with no users when using DNP3 SAv5.
  • Improved input validation.

Key Additions to Recent Releases

v3.15 – Added the ability to automatically generate data changes via plug-ins.
v3.10 – Added support for TLS and SSL.
v3.04 – Added the ability to automatically load a workspace on start-up.