Configuration File

A configuration file is used by MSL-Equipment to:

  1. Specify which Databases to use

  2. Specify the equipment that is being used to perform a measurement

  3. Specify additional parameters to use in your program

The configuration file uses the eXtensible Markup Language (XML) format to specify this information.

The following illustrates an example configuration file.

 <?xml version="1.0" encoding="utf-8"?>
   <!-- OPTIONAL: Use PyVISA-py as the PyVISA backend library.
    Other values are:
      @ivi (PyVISA >=1.11)
      @ni (PyVISA <1.11)
      @sim (PyVISA-sim) -->

   <!-- OPTIONAL: Whether to open all connections in demo mode. -->

   <!-- OPTIONAL: Add paths to where external resource files are located. The
    paths get appended to Config.PATH and os.environ['PATH']. If the recursive="true"
    attribute is included then recursively adds all sub-directories starting from
    the root directory (also includes the root directory). -->
   <path recursive="true">D:\code\resources\lib</path>

   <!-- OPTIONAL: The user can define their own elements. -->
   <max_temperature units="C">60</max_temperature>

   <!-- OPTIONAL: Specify the equipment that is being used to perform the measurement
    and assign an "alias" that you want to use to associate for each equipment. You
    only need to specify enough XML attributes to uniquely identify the equipment record
    in an Equipment-Registry database. For example, if there is only 1 equipment record
    in the Equipment-Registry databases (see the <registers> tag below) that is from
    "Company XYZ" then specifying manufacturer="Company XYZ" is enough information to
    uniquely identify the equipment record. If in the future another equipment record
    is added to an Equipment-Registry database for "Company XYZ" then an exception will
    be raised telling you to specify more information in the configuration file to
    uniquely identify a single equipment record. -->
   <equipment alias="dmm" manufacturer="Keysight" model="34465A"/>
   <equipment alias="scope" manufacturer="Pico Technologies"/>
   <equipment alias="flipper" manufacturer="Thorlabs" model="MFF101/M" serial="123456"/>

   <!-- REQUIRED: Specify the Equipment-Register Databases to load equipment records from. -->
     <!-- The "team" attribute is used to specify which research team the
      Equipment-Register database belongs to. -->
     <register team="P&amp;R">
       <path>Z:\Equipment\Equipment Register.xls</path>
       <!-- If there are multiple Sheets in the Excel database then you must specify the
        name of the Sheet that contains the equipment records. This Excel database
        also contains connection records (see the <connections> tag below) and so
        the <sheet> tag must be specified. -->
     <register team="Electrical">
       <!-- No need to specify the Sheet name if there is only 1 Sheet in the Excel database. -->
     <register team="Pressure">
       <!-- Using the XML or JSON format to store equipment records allows for including
        MaintenanceRecords, CalibrationRecords, MeasurandRecords, ... -->
     <!-- For a text-based database (e.g., CSV, TXT files) you can specify how the dates are
      formatted and the encoding that is used in the file (UTF-8 is assumed if the encoding
      is not specified). A CSV database uses "," as the delimiter and a TXT database uses
      "\t" as the delimiter. -->
     <register team="Time" date_format="%d.%m.%y" encoding="cp1252">
     <register team="Mass" date_format="%Y-%m-%d">
      <!-- You can also specify the database path to be a path that is relative to the
       location of the configuration file. For example, this "equip-reg.txt" file is
       located in the same directory as the configuration file. -->
     <register team="Length" user_defined="apples, pears, oranges">
       <!-- An EquipmentRecord has standard properties (e.g, manufacturer, model, ...) that
        are read from the database. You can also include additional fields from the database
        that are not part of the standard properties. Include a "user_defined" list
        (comma-separated) of additional properties to include. The field names that
        contain the text "apples", "pears" and "oranges" are added to the "user_defined"
        dictionary for all EquipmentRecord's in this register. -->

   <!-- OPTIONAL: Specify the Connection Databases to load connection records from. -->
       <path>Z:\Equipment\Equipment Register.xls</path>
       <!-- Must also specify which Sheet in this Excel database contains the connection records.
        This "Equipment Register.xls" file also contains an "Equipment" Sheet, see the
        <register team="P&amp;R"> element above. -->
     <!-- You can set the encoding that is used for a text-based database. -->
     <connection encoding="utf-16">
       <!-- Specify a relative path (relative to the location of the configuration file). -->


The Config class is used to load a configuration file and it is the main entry point, for example

>>> from import Config
>>> cfg = Config('config.xml')