How can I control the GC/MS programming by ourselves

We have a new project that need to integrate many other sensors and instruments with GC-7890B/MS-5977B.

We need control all this intruments and read/merge the results.

But Agilent do not open the protocol to the third party(TCP/IP or RS232).

Is there any way to do this work? Thank you!

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  • I have been working with this kind of automation and programming for more than 25 years. The tool I use for solving the programming is LabVIEW from National Instruments. I work in the chemistry labs, and all applications that I have set up also need full control of Valco Valves, block valves, Eurotherm T-controllers, thermocouples etc etc. A lot of various RS-232 and/or RS-485 protocols. Analog/digital signals in/out is typically handled with cDAQ hardware from National instruments.


    Regarding integration of analytical control of the GC-MS, here's my experiance; the 7890B GC has input control port, that you can use for simple control of starting analysis via triggering a start-signal. What you start then  is analysis in a sequence ready to be run. In my case, this was not good enough, as we work with high throughput, and one test using three GCs in parallell might start thousands of analysis in one single test. The problem here, is that if one single triggered analysis fails and hangs, the rest of the test is lost for that GC. That was not good enough for us. So I started using the EZChrom software (by Scientific Software back then), cause that had an ActiveX interface that let me take 100% control of the GC software from LabVIEW. With that solution I can from LabVIEW monitor the progress of the analysis, and if one hangs, I can abort it, and continue, only loosing one single analysis.

    I also have full control from LabVIEW what GC-method I use, the name of the result-file etc etc. I have also of course full control of all other process data, and can easily integrate analytical analysis with the process data. I have no experience with the GC-MS combination you are referring to. Only automation of pure process MS (Pfeiffer etc). After Agilent aquired the EZChrom software some years back now, the OpenLab system comes in two flavors, and one of them is the EZChrom version (the other is Chemstation). The first years of this platform was a true nightmare for me, as Agilent used loong time before they were able to handle that automation interface, and during that period implemented several nasty bugs. But today it seems to be working ok with the current version, which I'm using on several projects/platforms right now.


    So, in short, to solve your problem, you need a programming tool that can read all your input/output signals, and also take control of the analytical. In my humble opinion, the best choice is LabVIEW, of course. But you also need an expert to do the job, as this task is not something you can do without several years of LabVIEW and automation experience.


    If you have budgets to do so on your project, you need to get in contact with somebody that can run this automation project for you. I work in this business myself, and if you're interested in continuing the discussion with me, please let me know.


    best regards from

    Martin Plassen

  • Hi Martin,

    It sounds like your work is what we are doing now.The LabVIEW or other programming tools and the ActiveX component of EZChrom are what we need from your reply . I know of LabVIEW,it is a powerful tool to do this work,but our programmer is only good at C# and Python.

    We will discuss which language we will use to do this work. Can you tell me which part of LabVIEW we will need and pay for?

    We will discuss for this in our group, and we will need more money to pay for LabVIEW tools and the programmer, but if we use C#, we will spend more time to do this work I think .

    If we can not get the Instrument Control Framework for the Agilent Instrumentation from our local Agilent branch,your plan may be the best way.

    Thank you, your information is very useful for me.You can reply here or send email to me [Personal Information Removed by Moderator] if you have more suggestions or information of your business or project like this.

    I will send information here if we have new progress.Thank you everybody!


    Best regards,


  • Hi Martin,


    we are asked to do the samething ( control the Agilent 490 GC in a customer LabVIEW program since there are alot more going on that EZChrom cannot handle).


    We are a NI alliance partner in Canada and this is our business to build custom software to meet our customer's needs. If you can sell your LabVIEW Driver, we'd be interested if it supports the 490 model.


    [Personal Information Removed by Moderator]



    Vincent Carpentier

  • Vincent Carpentier

    I tried to get in contact with you  directly via your companys internet site, but there are no e-mail adress there at all, only a contact page that does not work. Whatever I try to enter on that page, I only get error message. Must be difficult to get customers that way !? Please try to find me and contact me directly, it seem Agilent will not let us use e-mail adress here.


    Martin Plassen


  • As a note, if you follow each other on the Community then you will be able to send direct messages to each other. 

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