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Entry type: FAQ Entry ID: 23670531, Entry date: 08/15/2008

How can you write the program to the FLASH Memory Card when using a SIMATIC S7-400 CPU?

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In this entry we describe possible ways of transferring the user program to a FLASH Memory Card when using a SIMATIC S7-400 CPU.
As opposed to SIMATIC S7-300 CPUs, the "Copy RAM to ROM..." function is not supported by SIMATIC S7-400 CPUs and CPU 318-2DP. Information on the "Copy RAM to ROM" function with S7-300 is available in Entry ID: 15389520

The following functions are available in SIMATIC STEP 7 for S7-400 CPUs:

These functions are described below.

File/S7 Memory Card/...

If the memory card is slotted in the external prommer or programming device (PG), then the "File/S7 Memory Card/Open" function opens a window in which all the program elements (program and data blocks) on the memory card are shown. Use Drag & Drop or Cut and Paste to transfer other blocks from the block folder to the memory card. The program elements from the block folder may only be inserted into the window opened with "File/S7 Memory Card/Open".
You cannot delete the program elements separately from the memory card. You can only delete the complete memory card via "File/S7 Memory Card/Delete...".
A requirement for the "Datei/S7-Memory Card/..." command is that you have a prommer or a programming device that can write to the Siemens Memory Cards. This is not possible with all prommers and PC-PCMCIA interfaces. If you are using a CPU or PC that cannot write to FLASH Memory Cards, we offer an appropriate prommer in Table 01 .

Order number




Table 01: USB prommer for Memory Cards (MC) and Micro Memory Cards (MMC)

PLC/Load user program to memory card

Using the STEP 7 function "PLC/Load user program on memory card" you can exclusively write the complete user program to the FLASH Memory Card. The user program of the object SIMATIC station is transferred that is selected in the SIMATIC manager tree. Everything that was already on the FLASH Memory Card is deleted beforehand. With SIMATIC S7-400 CPUs you can only use the "PLC/Load user program to memory card" function with FLASH Memory Cards in the STOP operating mode.

Using the STEP 7 function "PLC/Load user program on memory card", the project saved on the programming device is transferred to the FLASH memory card. If you want to transfer the current data of the CPU, for example after starting, the data first has to be loaded from the automation system into the programming device and then copied from the programming device onto the FLASH Memory Card.   

PLC/Store on memory card...

When you select the "Target system/Load to memory card..." function, a window opens first of all in which you select via check boxes everything that is to be written to the FLASH Memory Card or RAM Memory Card. It might be the case that you cannot deselect certain options and that others cannot be selected. This depends among other things on the CPU and type of memory card being used. You can select the following options via check box.

  • Current user program (incl. hardware configuration): Via this option, you select whether the current program is to be transferred to the memory card. If you select this option, the complete memory card is first deleted and then the whole user program including the hardware configuration is transferred to the memory card.
  • Current project: When you select this option, the complete STEP 7 project is first unpacked and then stored on the memory card as an archive file.
  • Libraries in the current multiproject: You only ever select this option when the project selected in the project window is part of a multiproject. The libraries marked are unpacked and then stored on the memory card as archive files.
  • Other files: When you select this option you can transfer any files to the memory card. You must select the files in the left field and shift them to the right field using the arrow key "-->". All the files in the right field are written to the memory card. You can remove files from the right field using the arrow key "<--".
  • Storage location on the PLC: This option is predefined by STEP 7 and depends on the type of memory card being used. If a FLASH Memory Card is slotted in the CPU, then the "Memory Card" option is selected. If a RAM Memory Card is being used in the CPU, then the "Load Memory (RAM)" option is selected.

Via the "OK" function button, you then start the complete storage procedure whereby the current user program is transferred first (if selected). It takes a while to transfer all the files selected to the memory card.

Warning: If you remove the RAM Memory Card from the CPU, you lose the data and files stored there. With the RAM Memory Card, the battery or power supply of the CPU is necessary to ensure that the data and program are not lost on the memory card.

PLC/Retrieve from memory card...

Via "PLC/Retrieve from memory card..." you can read out individual files stored via "PLC/Store on memory card..." from the memory card and save them on your PG/PC. If files are not displayed, you must change the "file type" in the open "Fetch files from PLC" window.

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