2. Installation

2.1. Installation - Microsoft Windows

The setup file will install Labber to the default Microsoft Windows installation directory, as well as create folders for storing data and local driver files in the user’s home directory. The default directories for local files can be set in the Preferences window, see Section PrefsFolder).

After installation, the Instrument Server, Log Browser and Measurement programs can be started by clicking the corresponding file from the Windows start menu. Note that the Log Browser and Measurement programs can be opened from within the Instrument Server, so it is usually sufficient to start just the server program.

2.1.1. Microsoft Windows - Troubleshooting

Depending on security settings, some virus scanners may prohibit Labber from being installed or run on you computer. If you’re experiencing difficulties installing or running the program, try to temporarily disable the virus scanner.

Some Microsoft Windows distributions lack a few support files needed by the program to run correctly. If the program won’t start, download and install the redistributable support files for Microsoft Visual C++ from http://www.microsoft.com/en-us/download/details.aspx?id=26368. Click on “Download” and select the file vcredist_x86.exe.

2.2. Installation - Mac OS X

On Macintosh OS X, open up the installer disk image (.dmg-file) and drag the Labber folder to the Applications folder. The Labber folder contains the Instrument Server, Log Browser and Measurement applications, as well as driver files and a few example scripts. To start one of the programs, double-click the corresponding app file.

If the program fail to open due to OS X’s restrictions to only allow apps from the Apple App store, open the Mac’s preferences, select Security & Privacy, and set “Allow apps downloaded from” to “Anywhere”. If you don’t want to lift the restrictions completely, the settings in Security & Privacy can be set to “Mac App Store and identified developers”. In this case, the user needs to open each of the Labber apps once by right-clicking the app icon, holding down the alt/option or the control key on the keyboard, then clicking open. This will instruct OS X that these apps are allowed to run. The operation needs to be performed once for all three apps, to make sure that the apps will be able to call each other.

2.3. VISA distribution

To communicate with instruments over the VISA protocol, a VISA distribution needs to be installed on the computer. A VISA distribution can be downloaded from National Instruments, see http://www.ni.com/visa/.

2.4. Network and firewall settings

The Instrument Server, Log Browser and Measurement programs communicate using TCP/IP, which makes it possible to perform measurements involving instruments connected to different computers, even on different networks. The default settings assign TCP port 9406 for server/client communication and TCP port 9407 for sending internal notifications between the program parts. If you want to perform measurements in a multi-computer network and firewall is enabled on your system, the firewall must be configured to allow traffic on these ports. The port numbers can be changed in case they are occupied on your system (see Chapter Prefs).

2.5. Program folders

In addition to the folders with executables the program uses a few extra folder locations, as listed below.

2.5.1. Data folder

The program needs a folder for saving the measured data. By default, this folder is set to “<User home directory>/Labber/Data”, but it can be changed at any time from the Preferences window (see Section PrefsFolder).

2.5.2. Instrument drivers

The program has two separate folders for storing instrument drivers, one main folder (called “Instrument drivers” in the Preferences window) and one local folder (called “Local drivers” in the Preferences). The main driver folder resides in the same folder location as the executables, and should not be altered in a typical setup. The local driver folder is set to “<User home directory>/Labber/Drivers”, but its location can be changed in the Preferences.

When creating a new instrument driver, the driver definition file should always be placed in the “Local drivers” folder. This allows the user’s own drivers to be kept separately from the drivers provided with Labber, and it also prevents drivers written by users from being deleted when updating the Labber program to a newer version. See Section Drivers for more information on creating instrument drivers.

2.5.3. Scripting

The Python API that contains scripting helper functions are located in the Script folder of the main program directory. See Section scriptPython for more information on scripting.