SZARP is a full-featured and free SCADA system for GNU/Linux. Client programs are available for both Linux and Windows.
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SZARP - System Zbierania Archiwizacji i Prezentacji danych

Copyright © 1991-2010 Witold Kowalewski Praterm Automatyzacja Ciepłownictwa
Copyright © 1995-2009 Praterm S.A.
Copyright © 1991-2018 various authors (see AUTHORS file)

Table of contents

  1. What is SZARP?
  2. What does SZARP mean? How to pronounce it?
  3. What are the features of SZARP?
  4. What is the origin of SZARP?
  5. On what platform is SZARP running?
  6. How to install SZARP?
  7. Where can I find documentation?
  8. How can I get SZARP sources?
  9. How to setup my first SZARP server?
  10. How can I get help?

  1. What is SZARP?

SZARP is a full-featured SCADA system designed for monitoring slowly changing industrial processes, for example operations of urban heating systems. It is completely free software, published under terms of the GNU General Public License 2.0 (or any later version).

  1. What does SZARP mean? How to pronounce it?

SZARP is an acronym for a Polish name: System Zbierania ARchwizacji i Prezentacji danych, which means System for Data Acquisition, Archiving and Presentation. Digraph "sz" in Polish is pronounced similarly to English "sh", so "SZARP" should be pronounced as a word "sharp".

  1. What are the features of SZARP?

SZARP architecture is organized into three layers.

The first layer are device drivers. There are several drivers available, including:

  • Modbus RTU/TCP (master and slave)
  • MBus
  • Praterm ZET/Sterkom PLC
  • Pollustat, Infocal and Kamstrup heating meters
  • DDE (Dynamic Data Exchange) protocol
  • communication with Python scripts through IPC
  • importing data from text files and text output of programs

These device drivers are called line daemons (for historical reasons).

The second layer consist of data collecting daemons that read data from drivers, calculate average probes and formulas (called defined parameters) and finally save data to SZARP database. Probes are generally available with any predefined resolution using the sz4 database (e.g. 1s or 1ms). There is also a web server available for serving parameters' values through HTTP.

In the third layer there are client programs, including:

  • Raporter - a program for viewing current values of parameters.
  • Reporter4 - as above, but for parameters from sz4 base.
  • Controller - a program for signalizing parameters' values irregularities.
  • Ekstraktor - a program for exporting data from databases to spreadsheet files.
  • Draw - a powerful tool for viewing and analyzing historical data.

More information about SZARP architecture is available in documentation.

  1. What is the origin of SZARP?

SZARP was developed since 1991 (sic!) by Praterm company and was used in all heating systems (over 20) owned by Praterm and that much other systems all over Poland. In 2007 Praterm decided to publish almost all of the code under GNU GPL. Nowadays SZARP is developed as an Open Source project on GitHub.

Project website is located at Today, the main founder of SZARP's development is Newterm company.

  1. On what platform is SZARP running?

SZARP is developed and deployed for Debian GNU/Linux and Raspbian, but should compile and run on any modern Linux distribution on i386, amd64 and armel/armhf architectures. Client applications should also run on Windows XP/Vista/7/10 machines with NTFS filesystem.

  1. How to install SZARP?

File INSTALL contains installation instructions.

  1. Where can I find documentation?

Unluckily most of the user documentation is available only in Polish. Sources of documentation are in resources/documentation/new/ directory and available online. Most of the new code is pretty-well documented (in English) using Doxygen.

  1. How can I get SZARP sources?


  1. How to setup my first SZARP server?

First install szarp-server and szarp-wx packages (for details see INSTALL):

apt-get install szarp-server szarp-wx

In a configuration stage, you have to set 4-letter name of a configuration (called configuration prefix), for example use "test". Answer "yes" to a question about creating 'szbase' directory. To use modern sz4 database backend, select sz4 from the list of available databases.

Now look at the /etc/szarp directory. There are two files:

  • parstart.cfg - obsolete. To choose which services will be run, do: dpkg-reconfigure szarp-server, which will create systemd service links

  • szarp.cfg - this is a SZARP system configuration file. There are a lot of available options, but for now you only need to set configuration prefix. Modify the beginning of the file so it looks like this:

$if $prefix$=""
# $prefix$:=exec("hostname -s")

($prefix$ variable should be set to "test")

If all above is done, you have to prepare SZARP parameters configuration. We will make configuration with one line daemon that polls system for average load. Go to the directory /opt/szarp/test and create subdirectory called config. Place there a file named params.xml with the following content:

<?xml version="1.0" encoding="utf-8"?>
<params xmlns="" xmlns:exec="" version="1.0" read_freq="10" send_freq="10" title="Test configuration">
  <device daemon="/opt/szarp/bin/execdmn" path="/opt/szarp/test/" exec:frequency="10">
    <unit id="1" type="1" subtype="1" bufsize="1">
      <param name="Test:System:Average System Load" draw_name="Average Load" short_name="lavg" unit="-" prec="2" base_ind="auto">
        <raport title="System report" order="1"/>
        <draw title="System" min="0" max="100" order="1"/>

Then, in directory /opt/szarp/test/config run command:


(this parses XML configuration, if every thing is ok, you should see "OK")

Prepare an executable script /opt/szarp/test/ with the following content:

cat /proc/loadavg | cut -d ' ' -f 1 | tr -d '.'

Save it and restart SZARP services:

systemctl restart

And that's all, you should be able to point your browser to http://localhost:8081/ and see your configured parameter. You can also run Draw3 program:


and analyze your system average load.

  1. How can I get help?

You can try to write us at