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IVI driver

IVI (Interchangeable Virtual Instrumentation) is a specification of instrument driver published by the IVI Foundation, formed by the biggest names in the instrumentation as Agilent, National Instruments, Rohde & Schwarz, Aeroflex, Tektronix, Teradyne, Pickering and other.

This specification defined instument classes (multimeter, oscilloscope, power supply, ...). All drivers in the same class have the same exported functions. This ensures instruments compatibility and interchangeability: measurement software is linked to the driver class that needle to the specific driver of the used instrument.

Example: I have a test application which measures voltage with a multimeter. My software calls the driver of the multimeter class. IVI refers to the specific driver for the X model from Agilent. Thus, we can change this multimeter by the Y model from Agilent or the Z model from Tektronix  with a simple configuration without modifying the software (for since we have installed the IVI driver of these three instruments).

List of instrument classes defined by IVI:

Digital multimeter (DMM) Oscilloscope Arbitrary waveform/function generator DC power supply AC power supply Switch Power meter Spectrum analyzer RF signal generator Upconverter Downconverter Digitizer Counter/timer Some specific instruments do not fall into this classification. In this case it is possible to create a new class.

LabWindows/CVI provides wizards for developing drivers and adding a new class.

IVI driver scan be called by any type of programming language. However TestStand, LabVIEW, and Measurement Studio can offer all the key functions in hand for their use.

Data acquisition cards are used to acquire electrical signals and convert them into digital data to allow software computation. These signals art images of a physical measurement such as, for example, pressure, temperature, speed or other electrical phenomena.