What is EtherNet/IP?


  • EtherNet/IP is developed by rockwell automation in the 90s

  • Common industrial protocols (CIP) over TCP/IP.

  • Independently supported/promoted by OVDA

  • Open standard,open source OpEner software.

  • Transfer IO data through UDP.It is fast but delivery is not assured.(Implicit messaging)

  • File transfer via TCP.It is slow but delivery is assured.File transfer means uploading and downloading of parameters,setpoint, programs and recipes via TCP.

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What is EtherNet/IP?

EtherNet/IP (or) Ethernet/IP protocol is a popular industrial communication protocol that enables real-time control and data transmission between devices in the industrial automation systems.

It is an implementation of the Common Industrial Protocol (CIP) over conventional Ethernet infrastructure that enables the smooth integration of devices from several manufacturers.

EtherNet/IP supports both peer-to-peer and client-server communication formats and is well-known for its flexibility, scalability, & interoperability, making it an ideal option for industrial applications like manufacturing, process control, and robotics.

How Does EtherNet/IP Work?

EtherNet/IP is operated on the client-server concept and employs ordinary Ethernet connectivity to exchange data between equipment in an industrial automation system. This is how EtherNet/IP works:

Physical Layer

EtherNet/IP provides physical connectivity with ordinary Ethernet gear and cabling. Ethernet cables and switches connect devices to the network, including PLCs, I/O modules, drives, sensors, & HMIs.

TCP/IP Protocol Stack

EtherNet/IP runs at the TCP/IP protocol stack’s application layer, which also comprises Ethernet framing, IP addressing, & TCP/UDP transport levels.

Common Industrial Protocol (CIP)

EtherNet/IP exchanges data and communicates with devices via the Common Industrial Protocol (CIP), an object-oriented protocol suite. CIP defines a set of services & objects that allow devices to communicate with one another. These solutions include explicit and implicit messaging, as well as device discovery.

Connection Establishment

Devices communicate via the client-server mechanism. A client device initiates communication by sending a request to the server. The server device replies to the client’s request by providing the requested data (or) performing the requested action.

Message Types

Explicit Messaging: The client delivers explicit requests to specified server devices utilizing CIP services. This approach is often employed for point-to-point communication among devices.

Implicit Messaging: Data is transmitted between devices without explicit demands. Devices send data to the network, & other devices subscribe to the information they require. This approach is frequently employed for real-time data sharing among numerous devices.

Data Representation

Data transmitted between devices is expressed utilizing CIP objects, which define the data’s structure and format. CIP objects can include a variety of data types, including integers, floating-point numbers, texts, and custom data structures.

Device Profiles

EtherNet/IP defines device profiles, which describe the communication capabilities & requirements of many types of devices. Device profiles define standardized communication interfaces, ensuring interoperability between devices from various manufacturers.

Advantages of EtherNet/IP


EtherNet/IP is interoperable with standard protocols & transport devices that use classic Ethernet, making it simple to implement.


Ethernet has become a widely recognized certifiable standard, to the point where equipment must be verified by EtherNet/IP test labs according to QoS.

Universal Use

EtherNet/IP has been utilized in almost every business; hence its universality has made it a popular protocol.

Why use Ethernet IP?

EtherNet/IP provides the speed, precision, and dependability required to manage & control information in real time by linking devices to a single network, enabling users to collect relevant data that helps keep essential systems running.

What is Ethernet TCP IP?

Ethernet TCP/IP is a typical Ethernet interface that connects several network nodes, which include computers in an office network. It can also be utilized for connecting other communication equipment, such as scanners & PLCs, on a factory floor.

Difference Between Ethernet and EtherNet/IP

Ethernet vs EtherNet/IP

Ethernet EtherNet/IP
Ethernet is a popular networking technology that specifies the physical & data link layers of the OSI model. EtherNet/IP runs at the application layer of the OSI model, with TCP/IP serving as its underlying transport protocol.
Ethernet requirements include frame formats, media access control (MAC) addresses, collision detection, & data transmission rates. It specifies a number of services and objects for device communication, such as explicit messaging, implicit messaging, device discovery, & device profiles.
Ethernet is a broad word for the underlying networking technology that is utilized in a variety of applications, including industrial automation, office networks, & residential networking. It is frequently utilized in industrial automation applications to link and control devices like PLCs, sensors, actuators, motors, and HMIs.

Difference Between EtherNet/IP and EtherNet/TCP

EtherNet/IP vs EtherNet/TCP

EtherNet/IP EtherNet/TCP
Device communication in industrial automation is facilitated by the application layer protocol known as EtherNet/IP (Ethernet Industrial Protocol). Ethernet traffic sent over TCP/IP networks is referred to as “EtherNet/TCP” (Ethernet over Transmission Control Protocol), not a separate protocol in and of itself.
TCP/IP serves as the fundamental transport protocol for EtherNet/IP, which functions at the application layer of the OSI model. Operating at the OSI model’s transport layer, EtherNet/TCP depends on TCP/IP for dependable packet delivery and data transmission.
Features like device interoperability, scalability, integration with enterprise IT systems, and real-time control are all made possible via EtherNet/IP. When Ethernet connectivity is needed via TCP/IP networks, it is frequently utilized in home networks, corporate networks, and other applications.