Worst VMS Manufacturers 2016

Author: John Honovich, Published on Feb 29, 2016

3 VMS manufacturers stood out as creating the worst problems for integrators.

150 integrators responded to our survey on their favorite and worst VMSes. With the favorites report complete, we now turn to the 3 worst.

A clear common theme emerged: companies releasing major new VMSes caused integrators lots of problems.

The Big 3

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Comments (14)

I agree 100% with Lenel OnGuard being an issue. Very complex for operators to learn and use. It is especially difficult to add a new camera and making sure it is running as it should requires about a week of tweaking.

So yeah, it is FAR from user friendly, but waiting 18 months for a new camera to be added is the worst part.

"requires about a week of tweaking."

What needs to be tweaked specifically?

Motion settings mostly. Getting the pre and post roll down is different for each camera, even the same make/model. We finally went with a generic setting of 4 and 5. This way we get more footage we don't need, but we don't miss anything that way.

What requires the most work is any change we make in the system takes at least three minutes to actually take. Then we have to be sure the changes actually took (sometimes they don't), let them run for a bit, check to see what the footage looks like and then go on to the next tweak. So each change (after we set it up with our generic settings by location type) can take up to an hour. Can be a day if we need to see what the footage looks like at night as well.

That's awful...

Sometimes if I make a change to the camera settings or resolution it will affect the motion detection zone. I do get a pop up telling me something vague to the effect of "some settings may be changed due to this action". A few times during my routine audits I've discovered the motion zone is altered or shrunk and I have to redo it. Most end users wouldn't be aware of this and might have their motion zones messed up to the point of being useless.

My assessment of OnGuard is that while it's definitely not user friendly, it's pretty good when it's working properly.

The problem is that due to the constant "little" issues that crop up all the time the system needs constant attention. Changes made here affect it over there, and the changes to fix that issue affected another issue over there. It's a constant reciprocation of issues, each predicated on the previous problem.

Anyone has tried Milestone Arcus?

Speaking of worst, Milestone Arcus VMS Tested. It's quite bad, almost shockingly so, but I do not think it registered because (1) very few integrators use it and (2) Milestone does not promote it much.

Have anyone heard that Milestone is going to stop Arcus's development?

I do not know what the future plans but there has not been much in terms of new releases recently. It is a good question. I will ask Milestone the next time we talk what they plan for Arcus going forward.

OnSSI 5.0 was bad .. Not having motion detection with a release is a sin.. The system however has ..potential.. You can see that it is coming together nicely. Version 5.1 is a step in the right direction but not there yet. The administrator interface on the recorder while different than 4.x is actually better in some ways. The VMS and CLient software interfaces are the exact same OnSSI has been using for a few years.

We are however moving toward NVR-based systems. While we dropped NVR appliances in favor of PC-based "recorders" ... For our customers/applications, NVRs serve them better. On top of that the lack of archiving from most VMS is to me a serious issue. To think about archiving usually requires the most expensive license from many VMS.. Much easier to archive and re-play with NVRs.

These favorite/worst lists are always my favorite to read. I'd be curious to see what the breakdown is on the data is. Is this mostly coming from end-users or integrators? New installs vs legacy. integrator vs end-user. An end-user might not like a VMS for a different reason than an integrator.

Was this survey post the 5.1 release of Ocularis? 5.0 was bad...real bad, however 5.1 has many of the bugs worked out and is actually pretty solid.

Keep'em coming!

The survey was just integrators and the reason being is that the average integrator has experience with many more lines than the average end user.

This survey was run on January 9 / 10, 2016, which was after 5.1 was released.

No one complains about March Networks VMS?

Version 5.1 solved many issues that occurs in version 5.0 and for me the reality ranking place for OnSSI is definitely in the top favorites VMS and not here...

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