How To Setup and Operate DDM


  • How to setup and operate DDM


  • Product Family: Control Systems and Software
  • Product: Daktronics Data Manager
  • Components: Microsoft Excel 2003 Professional or better; DMP-8000; DMP-7000
  • Control System: Show Control


Main Application Screen

  • After DDM is registered, the main application screen sill appear. It contains the same menus and buttons as a typical excel spreadsheet. Each setting related to outputting information to a display is found in the Document Actions task pane.
  • By default, there are six cells of the spreadsheet highlighted in blue. Data entered outside of the highlighted columns will not be included as RTD but can be used for labels or notes.
Document Actions Task Pane

The document actions task pane displays all of the settings to output RTD from the information that was typed or imported into the spreadsheet.

Enabling Document Actions

The document actions task pane is opened by default. If it doesn't open or is closed, go to view>Document Actions to turn it back on.

Task Pane grab.JPG


DDM Function Buttons.JPG

1) View Used to enable or disable the input and output monitor toolbars


2) Package Suite Editor -  Used to open a window to import packages of data into the spreadsheet from an external data source.

3) Port Configuration - Use Port Configuration.JPG to open a window to set up ports for sending and receiving data 

Port Configuration 2.JPG

  • 1. Click Add to insert a new port. 
  • 2. Under the General header, adjust the following options to set up the new port:
    • Format: Set to ERTD for outputting data to Daktronics displays.
    • Name: Type in a descriptive name for the port. 
    • Protocol: Select the method of data transfer from Serial, Tcp, or Udp. Note: Additional settings will appear based on the chosen connection. Contact the network administrator to apply the appropriate settings. 
    • Suite: Assign a package suite if applicable (see Advanced Data Importing).
    • Type: Select Tx if the port will be used to send out data or Rx if the port will be receiving data. 
  • 3. Click Ok when finished


4) Function Button Configuration - Select Function Button Configuration.JPG to open a window to set up buttons for starting and stopping data output as well as advanced display control commands.
 Function Button Configuration Window.JPG
  • Creating Function Buttons 
    1. On the Function Button Configuration window, select a worksheet (Range) for which the buttons will be used.
    2. Click Add to insert a new function button.
    3. Click Command Collection, and then click the button to open the Script Editor window.
    4. Click Add to insert a new command.
    5. Under Type, click the arrow to choose from a list of command types (Figure 10). Multiple command types may be assigned to a single button as long as the actions do not negate each other.
    6. Select StopAutoSending, and then click Ok.
    7. Change the Name of the function button to “Stop”

  • Scrolling or Paging Function Buttons
    • Scrolling function buttons send out RTD line by line with the next piece of data moving into the previous spot until all of the information has gone through.
    • Paging function buttons send out pages of RTD with a predefined number of rows of information on each page
      1. Repeat steps 1 – 5 under Creating Function Buttons. 
      2. Select Scrolling/Paging from the list of command types. 3. 
      3. Adjust the following settings accordingly:
        • HoldingTime: Type in how many seconds to wait before sending the next data set.
        • Port: Select a previously configured port (see Port Configuration).
        • RecordCount: Type in how many rows of data should be sent out at a time.
        • Sorts: Sort text or numerical data in ascending or descending order before it is sent out. 
      4. Click Ok when finished
      5. Give the Scrolling or Paging function button a descriptive name
    • Both Paging and Scrolling will send out data until the first empty row of data, and then start from the top again

  • Most function button configuration is similar and specific function button configuration can be found in section 3.2 of  DD1376354.
5) ITF Configuration - Used to open a window to set up an Input Template File. This file ITF Configuration.JPG links the display controller and the information that is entered in the spreadsheet. 
  1. Select a Data Stream (worksheet).
  2. Click OK.
  3. Save the ITF with a descriptive name.
  4. The ITF will then be used by the display controller to gather RTD from the spreadsheet. 
Note: An ITF must be saved before data can be sent to a display controller and after the following actions are performed: 
  • Adding or removing Headers 
  • Modifying the Size of a data field
  • Modifying the Title of a data field
  • Adding, removing, or modifying function buttons


6) Help - Used to see information about the version of DDM that is currently installed and to open the instruction manual.


Configuration Boxes:

  • Columns - Sets the number of highlighted columns in the data field, as well as the maximum number of characters for each piece of data in the column. Use the (+) and (-) signs to expand or hide the options. 
    1. Click Columns, and then click the button that appears to open the Header Editor window (Figure 14).
    2. Click Add to insert more columns, and click Remove to delete columns.
    3. Select a maximum Size in characters for the information in each cell for the column. Note: If information appears to be getting cut off on the display, make sure that the Size is large enough to fit the whole piece of information. Resizing column width to see longer information is not the same as changing the Size
    4. Enter a Title for the column. The Title will show up as the column header in the RTD.
    5. Click Ok when finished.
  • Data Range Location - Used to set the starting location of the headers on the spreadsheet.
  • Highlight Color - Used to change the color of column headers. Click HighlightColor, then the arrow to select from the preset colors.
  • Input Mapping - Used to define what input package fields are to be displayed in which cells of the spreadsheet. See advanced Data Importing from  DD1376354 for more information about package suites and input mapping.
  • Row Content - Used to define the total number of rows in a column, not counting the header. If the final number of rows in a column is unknown, leave the row count value set to "-1" and the first empty row will be used to determine the actual row count. 

For additional Daktronics Data Manager information please reference the manual.

KB ID: DD4162025

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