versiondog is the Change Management Watchdog for this Automated Solutions Provider
From beta tester to satisfied user – Knapp AG has been using versiondog for data management since 2009 in their headquarters in Graz, Austria. Now, versiondog will be used as a “digital watchdog” at the company’s other locations in Loeben and Sweden.
It was far from a mere willingness to experiment that initially led Knapp AG’s Werner Schauer to the beta version of versiondog. When the Head of PLC Development at Knapp AG first encountered versiondog in 2009, the data management and version control software was still very much in its infancy. “The Watchdog,” as versiondog is affectionately known within the company, has been managing all projects and versions in the PLC department ever since. Whenever a change is made to a project, “The Watchdog” sounds the alarm, sending email notifications to appropriate parties. Knapp AG recently experienced a situation with one of its German customers, reminding them of the critical importance of being able to clearly see what has been changed from version to version.
When Customers make Changes Too
Schauer uses versiondog primarily for the versioning and archiving of customer projects. “Basically, complex logistics systems are developed for the customer and commissioned with a certain delivery state,” Schauer explains. “versiondog compresses the versions and ensures that older versions do not get lost.”
In the past, archiving was a laborious task involving various combinations of numbers and letters, requiring everyone to remember and follow complicated naming and saving conventions. Now, versiondog simplifies these processes for everyone involved. As an interesting aside, versiondog only saves the changes, so the volume of data is kept to a reasonable level. “This is all particularly useful when customers also have access to the source code during a project,” reveals Schauer. This was case with a German customer that wanted to make their own changes after the project was delivered. versiondog made it possible for Knapp AG to carry out comparisons at all times. “Whenever the customer made changes, we always knew about it,” says Schauer. The option to directly compare programs also means that versiondog can restore data in no time at all. When components fail, the system enables controlled and reliable restoration without delay. The data either remains onsite on the company’s own servers or in a cloud environment.
At Knapp AG, the data is stored on internal servers that are backed up on a regular basis. “This means that only Knapp and the customer have access to the data,” says Schauer.
An Unlimited Number of Users
At Knapp, versiondog now monitors some 1,429 projects with over 5,720 versions – and this is just with their initial license. Schauer only decided to add a parallel server at the beginning of this year. Schauer is currently defining the roles for the company’s IT network. “Everyone can access all versions simply by using their Windows username and password,” explains Schauer. The parallel server license means that company locations in Leoben and Sweden will soon follow suit.
Whether in Sweden or Austria, it does not matter to “The Watchdog.” versiondog keeps an eye on everything and makes sure no data gets lost.
“Thanks to versiondog, all of our projects are stored safely and we can compare versions at any time.”
- Werner Schauer, Head of PLC Development at Knapp AG