Member Discussion

How Can I Verify Cameras Are Recording On VMS?

Is there any window in VMS (Gentec, Milestone & Exacq) which shows the recroding staus for all cameras. Recently we had incident that camera enabled for recording but no-actual footage found for that day (it was stopped recording a 20 days before).

My questions is...

How we can make sure that all cameras are recording ?(other than physically verifying all camera footages)

You can use software / service like Check my camera which is an external test to verify the functionality of your CCTV Software and Hardware.

Check My Camera - HOME

Though its currently not supporting the VMS you asked about...

Plus these 3rd party services need to get access to one's recorders, adding complexity.

It is common for VMSes to have built in admin status / health monitoring pages. I've asked Ethan to elaborate for VMSes asked.

Milestobe has built in reporting/alerting that can be configured in the Expert level and above. The lower level versions have similar, though more limited features. From Enterprise on down there is a free Dashboard program through Milestone. The Milestone Dashboard tends to generate far too many false alerts but the developers have been slowly improving it. I imagine the other VMS mentioned have similar features. It Boils down to a question of how difficult/time consuming they are to setup vs how much time you have to sink into the project and the value of assured recording.

Thanks for your reply.

Actually we have total of 80 cameras (Exacq VMS Enterprise). all cameras are enabled for recording (motion/continous) in setting. But when client looking for evidance of a particular camera he found that no-recording footage (even though recording enabled for this camera in the setting).

Here only I am getting problem, how we can assure the client all cameras are recording? OR any possiblity to get alert from VMS tells us that this camera is not recorded for more than 24hrs?

It is very difficult task to confirm that. We have heard that many companies hire dedicate persons running playback from time to time.

The cause can be complicated, ranging from software configuration (motion detection threshold too high), system issues (file system, or database issue), to software bugs.

The only reliable way is to check and track the presence of the video files.

Manquin Liu brings up a good point regarding the various sources of errors. Some potential sources of missed recording will never get flagged as an error by any VMS or management tool. For example - motion detection thresholds being set too high would not trigger an error under any system that I'm aware of. In that scenario, the system is working as setup... it is just not setup correctly. System bugs may also not trigger alarms.

*Disclosure: I am a Genetec employee*

Genetec Security Center offers a very easy way to accomplish exactly what you describe: using the "System Status" task, you can actually see, in real time (and dynamically, so the status of a camera can change while the report is opened) if a camera is online/offline and recording/not recording. The list of cameras can also be sorted, i.e. show all non-recording cameras first.

This report could also saved and sent to anyone in the organization in the form of a CSV, XLS of PDF file. The report can also be used to see the live status of servers, doors, access control units, elevators, intrusion area and much more.

You can also create live actions (pop-up message, email, alarm, etc) when a camera event happens (motion, input/output, no signal, etc).

Let me know if you'd like more information, I'll be glad to help.

Thanks David

There are two aspects for this question: Detecting the missing video and preventing the missing video.

Questions like "get alert from VMS tells us that this camera is not recorded for more than 24hrs" is very interesting, it actually goes beyond that. What happens if the video files got deleted for some reasons? You though you have 30 days of video retention, how do you know for sure?

Having all the relative evidences is critical for finding out what casued missing video so that you can fix it. Is camera alive at the time? Is camera flapping? how about your camera network health? storage health? file system corruption? Any configuration changed at the time such as driver/software updating?