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OSI PI Server

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The PI Server is a temporal (time-based) database that captures, archives, and retrieves time-stamped data. The PI Server is the flagship product of OSIsoft LLC and is often referred to as just "PI". The PI Server is installed in factory applications where the data from thousands of IOs need to be measured continuously and stored. The PI Server is in a class of software called, "Process Historians."



The PI server is a database management system that captures high-frequency (often sub-second) data and archives them by source IO. Typically, the source is a probe or instrument in the field/factory/equipment. Each source in the database is called a PI Point. PI is used to archive history and is widely used across many industries including Specialty Chemical, Food and Beverage, Mining, Oil & Gas, Life Sciences, Power Generation, Paper & Pulp and Semiconductor. PI is useful for Operations (technicians & supervisors) as well as Manufacturing Support (scientists and engineers).


The PI Server is a collection of software called subsystems. These subsystems include:

Each subsystem is actually a Windows Service:


Other PI prefixed services may exist for PI Interfaces that are installed on the machine.


There are many tasks associated with managing PI; and as PI is upgraded and evolved, there are more and more tasks. Administration is made easier with PI-System Management Tools (PI-SMT), there remains many administrative tasks that are executed via the command-line.


For Windows machines, PI is typically installed at C:\PI. Often, administrators will install PI on a separate partition from the OS, so this could be D:\PI or E:\PI.

This folder contains several core folders:

Other Files

The PI API is installed with the file: [WINDOWS]\system32\piapi32.dll

The Microsoft Runtime Library is installed with [WINDOWS]\system32\msvcrt.dll

Both of these files are copied to the system32 directory during installation.

See Also

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