The Idea Exchange icon denotes a new feature that originates from a product feedback suggestion on the NI Idea Exchange discussion forums at ni.com.
Refer to the LabVIEW 2011 Upgrade Notes for a complete list of new features and changes, for information about upgrade and compatibility issues specific to different versions of LabVIEW, and for upgrading instructions.
Refer to the readme.html file in the labview directory for known issues, a partial list of bugs fixed, additional compatibility issues, and information about late-addition features in LabVIEW 2011.
(Windows) With LabVIEW 2011 you can install LabVIEW and select modules and toolkits from the LabVIEW Platform DVDs. Refer to the Installing LabVIEW 2011 section of the LabVIEW Release Notes for more information.
New Example VIs
Refer to the New Examples for LabVIEW 2011 folder on the Browse tab of the NI Example Finder to view descriptions for and launch example VIs added to the current version of LabVIEW.
Block Diagram Enhancements
LabVIEW 2011 includes the following enhancements to the block diagram and related functionality.
Enhancements to Creating SubVIs
In previous versions of LabVIEW, when you create a subVI from a block diagram selection, you must clean up the connector pane and front panel of the new subVI manually. In LabVIEW 2011, LabVIEW automatically builds the connector pane and front panel of the subVI according to the following LabVIEW programming conventions:
- A 4×2×2×4 connector pane pattern, unless the subVI requires more terminals
- error in and error out terminals in the lower corners of the connector pane
- Refnum or class terminals in the upper corners of the connector pane
- Controls aligned on the left side of the front panel
- Indicators aligned on the right side of the front panel
For example, if you select the highlighted portion of the following block diagram, LabVIEW generates the following front panel and connector pane.
[Idea submitted by NI Discussion Forums member tst.]
Type Definition Enhancements
LabVIEW 2011 includes the following enhancements to type definitions and strict type definitions:
In LabVIEW 2010 and earlier, you can create a type definition only from the front panel. In LabVIEW 2011, you can create a type definition from the front panel or block diagram. Right-click the constant, control, or indicator you want to make a type definition and select Make Type Def. from the shortcut menu. [Idea submitted by NI Discussion Forums member crelf.]
A glyph, shown as follows, identifies instances of type definitions and strict type definitions on the block diagram: . If you move the cursor over the glyph, a tip strip displays the filename of the type definition or strict type definition. [Idea submitted by NI Discussion Forums member Broken Arrow.]
Miscellaneous Block Diagram Enhancements
LabVIEW 2011 includes the following miscellaneous block diagram enhancements:
You can use the Align Objects and Distribute Objects pull-down menus to align and distribute wires on the block diagram. [Idea submitted by NI Discussion Forums member JackDunaway.]
When you define a new event case for a control or indicator, Value Change is the default event. [Idea submitted by NI Discussion Forums member Bruce Ammons.]
You can wire an error cluster directly to the following Boolean functions to handle errors using logical operations: And, Or, Exclusive Or, Implies, Not, Not And, Not Exclusive Or, and Not Or. If an error occurs, the error cluster passes a TRUE value to the Boolean function. [Idea submitted by NI Discussion Forums member Dany Allard.]
- The parallel instances terminal of a For Loop with parallel iterations returns one of two types of output values. Right-click the parallel instances terminal of a For Loop with parallel iterations and select P Terminal Output from the shortcut menu to select which of the following values the terminal returns:
- Number of Instances—Returns the number of loop instances LabVIEW prepared for parallel execution.
- Current Instance ID—Returns an identifier assigned to the loop instance currently executing.
Front Panel Enhancements
LabVIEW 2011 includes the following enhancements to the front panel and related functionality.
New Style of Front Panel Controls and Indicators
The Silver palette contains the new silver style of controls and indicators you can use to build the front panel. To access the silver style of controls and indicators, browse to the Controls»Silver palette. Use the silver controls and indicators to build a front panel with an updated appearance and feel. The Silver palette contains more Boolean controls and indicators than other collections of controls and indicators.
Choosing Which Plots to View on a Graph or Chart
To choose whether to display a plot on a graph or chart, right-click the glyph in the plot legend and select Plot Visible from the shortcut menu. If the graph or chart contains multiple plots, you can right-click the plot legend and select Visible Items»Plot Visibility Checkbox from the shortcut menu to display a checkbox next to each plot. Use the checkboxes to select which plots you want to display. You also can use the Plot Visibility Checkbox Visible property to display the checkboxes programmatically. [Idea submitted by NI Discussion Forums member Sil3nc3r.]
Miscellaneous Front Panel Enhancements
LabVIEW 2011 includes the following miscellaneous front panel enhancements:
Every LabVIEW VI displays the connector pane next to the VI icon in the upper right corner of the front panel window. You can assign front panel controls and indicators as inputs and outputs without switching back and forth between the VI icon and the connector pane. [Idea submitted by NI Discussion Forums member blawson.]
- The background color of the front panel is a lighter shade of gray than the color in previous versions of LabVIEW to complement the appearance of the controls and indicators on both the Modern and Silver palettes. Refer to the KnowledgeBase for more information about changing the background color of the front panel to match VIs saved in previous versions of LabVIEW.
LabVIEW 2011 includes the following enhancements to the LabVIEW environment.
Dialog Box Enhancements
LabVIEW 2011 includes the following dialog box enhancements.
Clear Compiled Object Cache Dialog Box Enhancements
Due to optimizations to the VI object cache in LabVIEW 2011, you no longer can clear the VI object cache associated with a specific target. Instead, the Clear Compiled Object Cache dialog box allows you to clear only the following two caches:
- User object cache—Contains the compiled VI object files for all VIs that did not ship with LabVIEW.
You might want to clear the User object cache for the following reasons:
- You run out of disk space.
- You delete a large number of VIs with separate compiled code and want to reclaim the disk space occupied by their compiled code.
- Application Builder object cache—Contains the compiled code for VIs in build specifications.
Miscellaneous Dialog Box Enhancements
LabVIEW 2011 includes the following miscellaneous dialog box enhancements:
- The new Size page of the Properties dialog box for arrays configures the number of dimensions in an array.
- The Appearance page of the Properties dialog box for strings includes the Display Style Visible checkbox, which allows you to display a glyph on a string control or indicator that indicates its display type.
- The Plots page of the Properties dialog box for 2D Error Bar graphs includes the Error Mode list, which sets whether the error bar displays on the y-axis or on the x- and y-axes.
- To customize the Icon Editor dialog box for LabVIEW 2011, or if you have a custom Icon Editor from a previous version of LabVIEW, you can download the Icon Editor source files from the National Instruments Web site.
- Certain LabVIEW add-ons, such as the LabVIEW Robotics Module, include additional environment settings that allow you to focus on a particular subject area. If you install one or more of these LabVIEW add-ons, you can use the Choose Environment Settings dialog box to change from one environment to another without restarting LabVIEW.
- (Windows) The Getting Started window contains a new Find LabVIEW Add-ons item, which launches the VI Package Manager (VIPM) software so you can access LabVIEW add-ons and other code distributed on the LabVIEW Tools Network.
Miscellaneous Environment Enhancements
LabVIEW 2011 includes the following miscellaneous environment enhancements:
You can perform an undo operation after you save a VI. [Idea submitted by NI Discussion Forums member mishklyar.]
As you load a VI, you can select Ignore All to ignore loading all missing subVIs. [Idea submitted by NI Discussion Forums member Ravens Fan.]
- (Windows) The Help menu includes the Check for Updates item, which opens the NI Update Service window to check ni.com for any available updates.
- The VI toolbar buttons have an updated appearance to complement the background color of the front panel.
- You can configure LabVIEW to automatically separate compiled code from all new VIs rather than manually selecting this option for each VI that you create. To configure LabVIEW to separate compiled code from all new VIs, place a checkmark in the Separate compiled code from source file for new VIs checkbox on the Environment page of the Options dialog box. You can still override this global setting for individual VIs and projects.
Application Builder Enhancements
To delete the build specification files that LabVIEW creates during the most recent build, right-click the build specification in the Project Explorer window and select Clean from the shortcut menu. Selecting Clean does not delete files that LabVIEW creates before the most recent build.
New and Changed VIs, Functions, and Nodes
LabVIEW 2011 includes the following new and changed VIs, functions, and nodes. Refer to the VI and Function Reference book on the Contents tab of the LabVIEW Help for more information about VIs, functions, and nodes.
New VIs, Functions, and Nodes
LabVIEW 2011 includes the following new VIs, functions, and nodes.
Application Builder VIs
The Application Control palette includes the new Application Builder palette with the following new VIs:
Application Control VIs and Functions
The Application Control palette includes the following new nodes:
Bessel Function VIs
The Bessel Functions palette includes the following new VIs:
Error Function VIs
The Error Functions palette includes the following new VIs:
The Geometry palette includes the new Angle palette with the following new VIs:
The Geometry palette also includes the new Computational Geometry palette with the following new VIs:
Linear Algebra VIs
The Linear Algebra palette includes the following new VIs:
The Scaling palette includes the following new VIs:
Miscellaneous New VIs and Functions
LabVIEW 2011 includes the following miscellaneous new VIs and functions:
Changed VIs and Functions
The following VIs and functions changed in LabVIEW 2011.
The following VIs on the Geometry palette include a rotation order input, which specifies the order of the axes around which you want to rotate the coordinates:
Miscellaneous VI and Function Changes
LabVIEW 2011 includes the following miscellaneous VI and function changes:
- Averaged DC-RMS—The Ignore input time stamp element of the averaging control cluster is renamed Ignore input start time.
- Create Special Matrix—The data type of the matrix type input changed from an enum to a 32-bit signed integer. This input also includes the following new values you can use to create a special matrix: Hadamard, Hankel, Hilbert, Inverse Hilbert, Pascal, Rosser, and Wilkinson.
- General Linear Fit—Includes the new Weight Out output, which returns the actual weight of general linear fitting or returns the value you enter for Weight, depending on the method you specify.
- TDMS Read—Includes the new return channels in file order? input, which specifies whether the function returns data channels in the same order as they exist in a .tdms file. If the value of this input is FALSE, this function returns data channels in the same order as you specify in the channel name(s) in input. The default is FALSE.
Variant To Data—The error cluster terminals line up evenly with the majority of the error terminals of other functions and VIs. [Idea submitted by NI Discussion Forums member David_L.]
- Zero Phase Filter—Includes the following new instances: Zero Phase Filter (Cascade, DBL) and Zero Phase Filter (Cascade, CDB).
- The CIN functions are renamed the LabVIEW Manager functions.
New and Changed Classes, Properties, Methods, and Events
LabVIEW 2011 includes the following new and changed classes, properties, methods, and events.
Math Plots Properties and Methods
LabVIEW 2011 includes the new Plot Specific:Error Bar Mode property of the 2D Error Bar Properties class.
VI Server Properties and Methods
LabVIEW 2011 includes new VI Server classes, properties, methods, and events as well as the following changes:
- The following methods of the Application class support .dae files:
- For the Create from Data Type method of the VI class, the data type of the Style parameter changed from a 32-bit signed integer to an enum. The Style parameter also includes the following new values: Probe, Diagram, Panel Control, 3D Panel Control, Dialog Panel Control, Panel Indicator, 3D Panel Indicator, Dialog Panel Indicator, Power PC Control, and Power PC Indicator.
Asynchronously Calling VIs by Reference
To allow data flow to continue in a VI without waiting for a target VI to finish executing, you must call the target VI asynchronously. Use the Start Asynchronous Call node to pass input parameters to and start execution of a target VI. Use the Wait On Asynchronous Call node to collect the outputs of the target VI in the calling VI at a later time.
Consider calling a target VI asynchronously for the following reasons:
- When the target VI might require a long time to execute and the calling VI does not immediately require the outputs of the target VI.
- To execute any number of reentrant instances of a VI in parallel.
- To implement a simpler interface and experience better performance than the Run VI method provides.
[Idea submitted by NI Discussion Forums member Jim Kring.]
New Math and Signal Processing VIs
LabVIEW 2011 includes several new VIs for performing mathematics and signal processing operations. LabVIEW also contains several VIs with new or changed inputs and outputs. These new and changed VIs provide new built-in algorithms in several areas, including the following areas:
- Linear algebra
- Signal processing
Enhancements to .NET Support
LabVIEW 2011 includes the following enhancements to .NET support.
Debugging Unexpected Behaviors of .NET Assemblies in LabVIEW
.NET objects can exhibit unexpected behavior when LabVIEW has a different version of the assembly in memory than the version you want to use. To identify this discrepancy and debug the assembly calls, use the .NET Assemblies in Memory dialog box. If you determine that LabVIEW loaded the wrong version of an assembly, you can use this dialog box to adjust assembly locations on disk, create a configuration file, or reload updated assemblies to ensure that LabVIEW loads the correct assembly.
Loading .NET 4.0 Assemblies in LabVIEW
The most recent programming environments for .NET assemblies target new assemblies to run in the Common Language Runtime (CLR) 4.0 by default. Although LabVIEW is most compatible with the CLR 2.0, you can force LabVIEW to use the CLR 4.0 to load .NET 4.0 assemblies.
Configuring I/O Variables Remotely
In previous versions of LabVIEW, you can configure an I/O variable only from the target that hosts the variable. In LabVIEW 2011, you can configure I/O variables from remote computers.
Verifying That Hardware Supports Compiler Optimizations
LabVIEW 2011 incorporates compiler optimizations that improve the run-time performance of VIs and applications on processors that support SSE2 instructions. When you compile VIs in the LabVIEW development environment, LabVIEW automatically detects whether your processor supports SSE2 instructions and enables or disables the compiler optimizations accordingly. However, when you build an application in LabVIEW, you must verify that all potential targets support SSE2 instructions. If any potential targets do not support SSE2 instructions, you must disable the compiler optimizations.
Viewing and Controlling Front Panels Remotely without a License
In previous versions of LabVIEW, you need a license to view and control front panels from remote computers, and the license grants only a limited number of remote connections to front panels. In LabVIEW 2011, you can view and control front panels remotely without a license, and you can connect to remote front panels an unlimited number of times.
Improved Notification When the LabVIEW Run-Time Engine Is Missing
When you run a LabVIEW stand-alone application on a computer that does not have the LabVIEW Run-Time Engine installed, the application displays an error message that includes a link to the National Instruments Web site. This link allows users of the stand-alone application to download the LabVIEW Run-Time Engine without contacting the application vendor to troubleshoot the issue.