How to Use In-Sight WriteImageFTP Function

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When working with a Cognex In-Sight camera, you may need to save images to a specific place on your laptop or another computer. For instance, application developers often deliver “fail” images to a specific location. This training video on the WriteImageFTP Function in Cognex In-Sight Explorer walks you through the process.

Highlights from the video include:


A File Transfer Protocol (FTP) server is built into Insight Explorer. FTP is a standard for moving and storing large files in a computer network. WriteimageFTP tool in In-Sight Explorer allows users to deliver both raw and processed image data to their laptops or PCs.

Images are captured by In-Sight cameras along the production line, which are then processed by the embedded machine vision software. The software analyzes the images to automate pass/fail inspections. The goal is to detect surface irregularities during an inspection. 

“Fail” images help In-Sight cameras identify defective parts. WriteimageFTP then delivers the images to a remote site, like a laptop, for storage, allowing users to recall the images for reference at a later time.

Getting Started

In the In-Sight Explorer spreadsheet view, identify the In-Sight camera/sensor that will acquire images. First, click on the icon for the appropriate camera and take the device offline by clicking on the button at the top right of the In-Sight Explorer function bar.

Next, navigate through the Functions pallet to the Input/Output icon. Click on this icon to display a list of functions, then click on Network to open more functions, including WriteImageFTP.

Next Step: Setting Up the Function

A specific cell in the spreadsheet helps you set up the WriteImageFTP function. The cell is referenced as an event. Clicking on it calls up a dialog box to enter FTP parameters like the host name, username and password. Users can also select the file type, resolution, data format and other critical settings. 

In addition, In-Sight Explorer includes an Emulator tool that enables app developers to work in a virtual version of their machine vision environment. With the Emulator, users don’t need to be connected to a live, networked camera or sensor to configure their machine vision application.

Taking it Online

The final step is to reconnect to the network by clicking the button on the top right of the function bar. Users can also import In-Sight image files, which will show up in the background of the spreadsheet.

Under the View menu, select In-Sight Files to see a list of the images the camera has captured.  Here, developers can copy the filename and paste it into an In-Sight directory on their computers, making the image file available for any future In-Sight projects.

Mary Romano

Manager, Global Content Marketing, Cognex

A self-proclaimed marketing maverick, Mary has experience in a variety of industries and marketing activities. Her career began in the world of defense and aerospace, then shifted to collaborative robotics and now machine vision. She drives brand awareness, nurtures customer relationships, and elevates the impact of sales through compelling content. Outside of the office, Mary enjoys baking (and eating) desserts, running outdoors, and exploring new places. She is also a self-published author of a children’s book about her dog, Doma.

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