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Installing RT-LAB on Windows Command Stations and Windows Target Nodes

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Here, we describe the installation of RT-LAB host and target components on a Windows PC.

RT-LAB provides full integration with MATLAB™ / Simulink.
Please make sure this MATLAB™ is already installed before installing RT-LAB. The following toolboxes from MathWorks are required:

  • Simulink

  • Simulink Coder

  • Simscape Electrical Specialized Power Systems (SPS) (optional, only for electrical simulations)

  • MATLAB™ Coder (optional)

  • Stateflow (optional)

Close all instances of MATLAB™ before starting the RT-LAB installation.

Installing RT-LAB Software on your Host Station

The software can be downloaded directly from:

Register as required and complete the on-screen directions.
At the end of the procedure, a compressed ZIP file will be downloaded. Decompress the ZIP file using your favorite application and double-click on the MegaInstaller application to launch it.

Setup Wizard

The MegaInstaller will allow installing RT-LAB and the related software suite (Artemis, RT-EVENTS, RT-XSG, eFPGASIM, SchematicEditor, MMC). It is therefore possible to install all products, or select only the required ones. The documentation that follows will focus mostly the RT-LAB product.

  • Follow the on-screen instructions to go through the installation process.

  • Please wait while RT-LAB is installed. This will only take a few minutes.

  • Once RT-LAB has been installed on your computer, click Finish to close the Wizard.

The RT-LAB installation software creates or modifies the following files:

  • <MATLAB_ROOT>\toolbox\local\startup.m, for each version of MATLAB.

  • <MATLAB_ROOT>\toolbox\local\setup_rtlab.m, for each version of MATLAB.

The RT-LAB installation software also adds the following paths to MATLAB:

  • <RT-LAB installation dir>\common\bin

  • <RT-LAB installation dir>\Simulink\rtw\c\common

  • <RT-LAB installation dir>\Simulink\libr[xxxxx]

  • <RT-LAB installation dir>\Simulink\m

  • <RT-LAB installation dir>\common\bin\x32

...where xxxxx is r2021a for MATLAB 9.10, r2023b for MATLAB 23.2 and so on.

Configuring your Firewall Application

The RT-LAB installation wizard asks the user’s permission to automatically configure Windows Firewall.
However, if you choose not to allow this automatic configuration, or if you are using a third-party firewall application, then a manual configuration will be necessary.

You must give access to the following programs through your firewall application before launching RT-LAB:

<RT-LAB installation dir>\common\ui\RT-LAB.exe <RT-LAB installation dir>\common\bin\Controller.exe <RT-LAB installation dir>\common\bin\MetaController.exe <RT-LAB installation dir>\common\bin\OpalD.exe <RT-LAB installation dir>\common\bin\OpalDLoader.exe <RT-LAB installation dir>\common\bin\x32\OpalNode.exe <RT-LAB installation dir>\common\bin\x32\PanelViewerXXXX.exe

...(where XXXX represents the supported LabVIEW versions).

As an example, the following procedure shows how to manually configure Windows Firewall (once again, performing these steps is not necessary if you have accepted the automatic configuration).

  • Launch the Windows Firewall.

  • Click Allow a program or feature through Windows Firewall.

  • In the new window, click Allow another program...

  • In the new window, click Browse... and select the programs listed above.

If you have any questions about the configuration of your firewall application, please contact the third-party software’s technical support. If RT-LAB presents any undesirable behavior arising from this configuration, please contact OPAL-RT's support team

Starting RT-LAB

To launch the RT-LAB interface:

  • Double-click the RT-LAB shortcut on your Desktop,

  • Or use the Windows start menu (All Programs/OPAL-RT/RT-LABvW.X.Y.Z/RT-LAB).

Selecting a workspace

You are then asked to select a workspace.
Click the box labeled Use this as default, and do not ask again if you would like to establish a default directory.
For first-time users, it is recommended to leave this option unchecked.

Eclipse Launcher

The workspace is the directory in which RT-LAB will store all the files required for your simulations. For first-time users, we recommend you use a new and empty directory, as this will help you understand the exercises in this guide.

Click the OK button and wait for the Welcome page to appear.

The Welcome page provides quick access to tutorials and documentation. You can open it later from the menu Help/Welcome.
For now, click Go to the workbench to open the main RT-LAB window.

Validating the installation

For validation, we recommend that you verify that all toolboxes have been installed in MATLAB™.

  • Open MATLAB™.

  • Type ‘’ver’’ in the command window of MATLAB™.

  • Verify that you see the following toolboxes from OPAL-RT:

    • RT-LAB

    • ARTEMIS Blockset (optional)

    • RT-EVENTS Blockset (optional)

    • RT-XSG (optional)

    • eFPGASIM (optional)

    • MMC (optional)

If any of the installed OPAL-RT toolboxes have not been added to the path of MATLAB™, you can add them manually. Run the “m” script (at the following locations) from the MATLAB™ command line to add them.


C:\OPAL-RT\RT-LAB\[RT-Lab version]\simulink\m\setup_rtlab.m

ARTEMIS Blockset

C:\OPAL-RT\ARTEMIS\[ARTEMIS version]\art_m\setup_artemis.m

RT-EVENTS Blockset

C:\OPAL-RT\RT-EVENTS\[RT-EVENTS version]\rte_m\setup_rtevents.m


C:\OPAL-RT\RT-XSG\[RT-XSG version]\rtxsg_m\setup_rtxsg.m


C:\OPAL-RT\eFPGASIM\[eFPGASIM version]\Matlab\Setup\setup_efpgasim.m


C:\OPAL-RT\MMC\[MMC version]\mmc_m\setup_MMC.m

Installing the LabVIEW API

The installation of the LabVIEW API is done through an executable (.exe file) located in the RT-LAB installation directory. Once installed, there will be one VI (Virtual Instrument) per API function.

LabVIEW must be installed first and the API must be installed for each version of LabVIEW you want to use.

  • Run <RT-LAB installation dir>\labview\XXXX\Volume\setup.exe
    ...(where XXXX represents the desired LabVIEW version)

  • Follow the instructions, and click Finish once the installation is complete.

Installing TestStand

During the installation process, RT-LAB will add certain files to TestStand if TestStand was installed prior to installing RT-LAB. RT-LAB makes all the necessary adjustments so that most of the RT-LAB API functions can be readily used in TestStand.

The supported versions of TestStand are listed in the National Instruments TestStand Compatibility section.

One additional adjustment to TestStand that you may want to perform manually to avoid having to locate OpalApiTs.dll when you open sequences that use the RT-LAB API is the following:

  • Run TestStand, and log in as administrator.

  • Go to the Configure menu and open the Search Directories window.

  • Make sure the item PATH environment variable is checked.

  • Click OK to apply any changes.

Warning: It is strongly discouraged to add the complete path to the location of OpalApiTs.dll for a given RT-LAB release because this path will not be updated when you install a newer version of RT-LAB.

Setting Up the Windows PC as a Target Node

The Windows command station may also be used as a target node for slow pseudo-real-time applications. Please note that you must use an OPAL-RT chassis with a real-time operating system as a target node in order to achieve real-time performances.

Installing compilers for Windows-based simulation

The user can a compatible version of MinGW. 

Installing MinGW

RT-LAB provides the tools to download and install a compatible version of MinGW. RT-LAB enforces the use of a specific version of MinGW which has been verified as compatible with the software.  Installing this version is required for any new installation of RT-LAB if MinGW is to be used as a compiler.

If an internet connection was available during the installation process, RT-LAB automatically installed MinGW. Otherwise, if internet access is now available from the host Windows system, perform the following operations:

  • From the file explorer, open the <RT-LAB installation dir>\mingw directory.

  • Double-click on mingw_download.bat to launch the installation and wait for completion (it can take several minutes).

  • Once completed, the final lines of the command output should match the following:

  • Press ENTER to close the command window.

If no internet access is available on the Windows host system, perform the following operations:

  • Copy and transfer the <RT-LAB installation dir>\mingw\mingw_download.bat to a Windows computer from which internet is available.

  • From the computer which has internet access, open a Command Prompt window

  • Ensure the current directory of the command window matches the directory where mingw_download.bat has been copied using the command
    cd <myfolder>

  • Perform the download of MinGW using the following command, where tmpmingw can be replaced by any folder of your choice. It can take several minutes.
    mingw_download.bat -d tmpmingw
    Once completed, the final lines of the command output should be similar to the following:

Press ENTER to complete the command

  • Copy and transfer the entirety of the tmpmingw folder to the Windows system on which RT-LAB has been installed

  • From the Windows host computer, open a Command Prompt window

  • From the command window, move to the mingw folder within the installation of RT-LAB using the following command:
    cd <RT-LAB installation dir>\mingw

  • Perform the installation of MinGW using the following command, where <My Directory>\tmpmingw designates the folder where the MinGW installation files were transferred:
    mingw_download.bat -i <My Directory>\tmpmingw

  • Once completed, the final lines of the command output should be similar to the following:

  • Press ENTER to complete the command

Displaying localhost

Displaying Windows host PC in the target list is already configured by default, but should the setting have changed :

  • In the Project Explorer, click Filter targets.

  • Check Show ’localhost’ target.

  • Click OK.

Note: A license is needed to use a target node. For more information, read about Activating a License on the Target Node.


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