What you need to know before upgrading to RSLogix 5000 version 20.03

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RSLogix 5000 V20.03 Download NoticeWait! Before you install version 20.03 you really should understand how it's different, very different, from all previous minor revisions of RSLogix 5000.

Update! Version 20.04 solves many of the problems introduced with 20.03 – find out more in our article about 20.04 HERE.

In the past, it didn't matter if everyone in your facility had a different minor revision of RSLogix 5000. For instance, if you had version 19.00 installed, and someone else had 19.01, the two of you could exchange and open each other's files, as well as upload from, or go online with, any version 19 Logix processor.

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However, with version 20.03 this is no longer the case. For instance, if you open a version 20.01 file with 20.03 it will be converted to the v20.03 format and no previous version of 20 will be able to open it. Additionally, if you were to download that 20.03 version of your program to any Logix PAC (with any v20 firmware) no version of RSLogix5000 other than v20.03 would be able to go online or upload from that processor.

Note: You can listen to our companion podcast about RSLogix 5000 v20.03 HERE.

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Think about it – if just one person in your facility upgrades to 20.03, and then makes a needed change to a program, no one else will be able to open that file or go online with the system without first upgrading to v20.03. This could be hugely inconvenient if discovered while troubleshooting a down line.

RSLogix 5000 Splash ScreenWhy did Rockwell make this change? From what I've read, version 20.03 is a resiliency release which I've interpreted as meaning they've beefed up the security and robustness of the .ACD file. In an odd way it does make sense that once the file is converted to a more secure format it couldn't be opened in the older less secure software. And as version 20 is the last version for many older controllers (including the 1756-L6x, L23, L3xE, & L4x) it also seems inevitable that some new v20 minor revs would be released without backward compatibility.

[artadrr-pac-e]So, what should you do? I suggest reviewing the impact in time and productivity that migrating to version 20.03 will cause. If your production lines are running non-stop and you don't have time to upgrade all your RSLogix 5000 PC's, as well as take your Logix PAC's down in order to download the version 20.03 program files, you may wish to wait until you can comfortably schedule doing so into your production schedule… if you feel a need to migrate at all.

For more detailed information on RSLogix 5000 version 20.03, see the below three links to public knowledgebase documents from Rockwell Automation detailing this release:

565204 – RSLogix 5000 Software, Version 20.03

565684 – Incompatible minor version error in RSLogix 5000 when trying to go online

565682 – Unable to open a Version 20 RSLogix 5000 Project

I hope the above information on version 20.03 was helpful.  If you have any questions or comments please feel free to leave them below using the “Leave a reply” form at the bottom of this page.


Shawn Tierney
Automation Blogger and Trainer

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