LabVIEW Idea Exchange

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LabVIEW Core Edition

Status: New

This suggestion has been made before twice, in 2010 and 2011, in a more or less similar manner, and declined both times, but in light of the recent announcement of LabVIEW Community Edition I thought it might be worth a 3rd shot, so here it is with my own rationale for it (originally posted here).


Consider eventually also making available an (also free) "Core" edition of LabVIEW coupled with a much-reduced-in-size "LabVIEW Core Runtime", with everything hardware- and advanced-math-related removed, but allowing for commercial and academic usage.


There would be many benefits in doing so:


  1. It'd would allow LabVIEW to develop more into general purpose language, suitable for developing generic cross-platform desktop and web applications;
  2. It'd bring all manners of new developers from outside the very specialized field of industrial applications;
  3. These non-industrially-focused developer would develop new libraries and open source packages that'd expand LabVIEW's capabilities in all manners of directions;
  4. And then all these elements -- 3rd party "for core" tools, new developers, new ideas -- would provide a boost to the industrial-related versions, which would become the natural upgrade paths.

Doing this might risk losing a few sales of paid-for versions, and it'd also incur in costs as NI would have to decouple many things, which would require lots of engineering hours to do. But I believe long term it'd boost LabVIEW's usage in significant ways, and result into even more sales down the line.


Typical usage progressions would become something like this:


  • Core → Community → Base → Full → Pro → Pro + add-ons → Suite(s)
  • Core → Core + (new, paid for) Advanced Math and similar core-focused add-ons → etc.
  • Core for entry level generic programming classes → Academic licenses for classes focused on industrial applications → Academic licenses for actual research

And so on and so forth.


Please consider it, okay? 🙂

Proven Zealot

We have discussed "do something to reduce RTE size" many times, and we have been discussing it again in light of Community Edition. Making the lvrt.dll itself vary among the different editions is seriously problematic, but there may be some other things we can do to better segment it into secondary DLLs.



I can imagine. My idea with the above suggestion, in addition to this "Core" edition being free for commercial usage, would be a runtime with only the most bare-bones of features, as there'd be no advanced charts, displays, math features, web server, hardware support etc. in it, just the language itself. At the very least it might mean splitting the runtime into two DLLs: the "core" one, and the "everything else" one, so that any other LabVIEW edition would simply also require the second one in addition to the first.


A small core language with a light runtime would, I imagine, allow basic, non-industrial G programs to be even run as web services in a shared hosting that had the runtime installed, very quickly answering GET and POST requests from, for example, an Apache web-server. Plus lots of similar light tasks. That alone might make LabVIEW way more popular.