S5, PLC, Siemens

How do I upload from a Siemens S5 PLC Using STEP5?

This is a frequently asked question – how do I upload from a Siemens S5 PLC using STEP 5? The Siemens S5 PLC family is now mature and obsolete, therefore not many newcomers to the PLC Programming field have experience with making a backup of the S5 PLC for backup or conversion purposes. This FAQ is to remind existing users or to teach new users how to upload. The focus will be using the RS-232 to TTY download cable.

Information about the STEP 5 software and cable can be found here.

S5 PLC Upload Procedure

Step 1:

With STEP5 opened, do File > Project > Set

Upload from a Siemens S5 PLC- Step 1

Step 2:

With the cable connected to the PLC, select the PLC tab and highlight the Mode field and press F3 to Select Online.  You’ll see the message PLC Interface being checked

The Mode should then read Online. If it doesn’t, check your communications cable and settings. The most common settings are:

Interface: AS511
Parameter: COM1
(or the COM port you are using)

Pressing F3 on either of these settings will let you change it.

Upload from a Siemens S5 PLC- Step 2

Step 3:

Select the Blocks Tab to choose the filename to which to store the program.  Note: the filename must be XXXXXST.S5D (5 characters then ST.S5D).

Upload from a Siemens S5 PLC- Step 3

Step 4:

Note in the above that the directory is C:\STEP5\S5DATEN\. This is the default storage location for Blocks files. To change the directory, highlight the Program file field, and press F3. You can skip this step if the default directory is fine for you.

Upload from a Siemens S5 PLC- Step 4

File = the currently selected directory and filename (this can be edited directly)
Files Box = List of files in the current directory
Dr/Directory = directory browser to change the current directory ( .. = go up a dir level)
Click Enter when finished selecting your directory and file name.
Click Enter again from the Project Setting screen.

Step 5:

Next step is to transfer the blocks from the PLC to the file we just setup.
Do File > Blocks > Transfer…

Upload from a Siemens S5 PLC- Step 5

Step 6:

Click PLC in the Transfer from box (the X should be there after clicking)

Click Program File in the to box. (Note: you can even select a different file and directory here than what was selected in Step 1)

Click Block List in the Selection box, and type the letter A in the field for All Blocks, or press F3 and select A All Blocks

Note:  You can type DB instead of A if you want only data blocks, or press F3 for more options.

Click Transfer

Upload from a Siemens S5 PLC- Step 6

Step 7:

To transfer blocks from the file to the PLC, do everything the same except change the Transfer from to Program file, and change ‘to’ to PLC.

Note:  You can type DB instead of A if you want only data blocks.

Upload from a Siemens S5 PLC- Step 7


Although you can still buy software to maintain your S5 PLCs, these PLCs are now discontinued. The easiest migration forward is the Siemens S7 PLC, but it could also be upgraded to the controller of your choice. Be advised, that more than likely your HMI will also need migration or upgrading as well to communicate to your new PLC.

Contact us for a free consultation for upgrading your S5 PLC.

    Fill out the form below, or call us by phone at one of the numbers at the very bottom of this page.