Everything seems to work, but alarms never end

Forum for questions and support relating to the 1.25.x releases only.
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rzeune
Posts: 11
Joined: Thu Jul 25, 2013 11:11 am
Location: Columbus, Ohio

Everything seems to work, but alarms never end

Post by rzeune » Thu Jul 25, 2013 12:10 pm

I'm brand new to Zoneminder *and* Linux, I've worked for a week to get this going. I've made it past most of the hurdles, but I can't find any info on this issue.

I first installed Ubuntu desktop 13.04 on a brand new box quad core AMD and 4GB ram.
Camera is Huacam HCV701, 1280x960 H.264 Ip camera.

I generally followed the "Ubuntu Server 12.04 64-bit with Zoneminder 1.25.0 the easy way" guide along with various posts regarding the IP camera, such as setting source type to ffmpeg and source to rtsp://192.168.0.109:10081?tcp. I have the camera set to use variable bit rate encoding and output 3 frames/sec.

After the initial setup of the camera, then Ubuntu, then Zoneminder I can open the zm console from my Windows computer and view the live output. But I have not been able to get motion detection to work correctly. I've set up a small zone, about 10% of the camera's view. I have the pre- and post-image count set to 10.

I've used both AlarmPixels and Blob configurations to successfully trigger on the right events. But once the alarm triggers, it stays in the alarm state for a long time, sometimes until I restart zm. No matter which modect algorithm I use, the event log always shows an Avg. Score of 50 and various Max. Scores. If I open up one of the events and then click on the frames button, I see the list of individual frame data. It lists about 10 frames with Type=Normal, Score=0. These are followed by Type=Alarm frames with increasing scores. But a few seconds later, when the cause of the event is gone, the Score decreases to 50 and *stays* there. Even if I have the alarm pixel threshold minimum set to 55, it stays in alarm mode with a score of 50.

I cannot find what keeps it in alarm state. I've set "Reference Image Blend" to 20% with no affect. Has anyone out there seen this behavior, or have suggestions on how to troubleshoot this?

mgc8
Posts: 8
Joined: Sat Dec 20, 2008 1:32 am

Re: Everything seems to work, but alarms never end

Post by mgc8 » Thu Jul 25, 2013 1:57 pm

Hi,

I'm experiencing the exact same problem, I've posted about it here:
http://www.zoneminder.com/forums/viewto ... 29&t=21195

I've never been able to get Modect working in ZM, although monitoring works just fine (and I have it installed on several machines in different locations).

This must be incredible synchronicity... I've been waiting for a while to post about this, and finally did today, about an hour ago. And immediately after, you post with the exact same issue :)

Maybe a moderator could merge our threads (with your title, seems more clear)? That would give people the chance to more easily contribute valuable information.

Cheers,
Mihnea

rzeune
Posts: 11
Joined: Thu Jul 25, 2013 11:11 am
Location: Columbus, Ohio

Re: Everything seems to work, but alarms never end

Post by rzeune » Thu Jul 25, 2013 2:34 pm

Hi Mihnea,

It's comforting to know I'm not completely alone and lost in Zoneminder land!

My next step will be to get Zonemminder source and compile on my machine. This is a big hurdle for me since I'm new to Linux. So let's hope someone can at least point us in a helpful direction.

Ray

mgc8
Posts: 8
Joined: Sat Dec 20, 2008 1:32 am

Re: Everything seems to work, but alarms never end

Post by mgc8 » Thu Jul 25, 2013 3:03 pm

I've been doing some more digging around this, and finally found one tidbit of information that may point in the right direction:
http://www.zoneminder.com/wiki/index.ph ... umentation
Linked Monitors
This field allows you to select other monitors on your system that act as triggers for this monitor. So if you have a camera covering one aspect of your property you can force all cameras to record while that camera detects motion or other events. You can either directly enter a comma separated list of monitor ids or click on ‘Select’ to choose a selection. Be very careful not to create circular dependencies with this feature however you will have infinitely persisting alarms which is almost certainly not what you want! To unlink monitors you can ctrl-click.
The thing is I do have linked monitors, so the first thing I'll try now is delete those and see what happens. Might be a useful avenue to explore for you as well; if you don't have them, we're back at sqaure one.

EDIT: False alarm (pun intended ;) ) I just tried that, unlinked all monitors, clicked "save", tried the thing again... no difference. The other cameras still appear in the "Linked Monitors" multi-select box, just "un-selected"; I guess that's expected behaviour. Thinking more about it, I think what you mention above about the scores going up and then being "stuck" at 50 is a good direction to investigate further. Looking forward to hear if a recompile solves the issue as well (that might point to a packaging bug or something in the Debian packages which Ubuntu probably uses as well)

bb99
Posts: 943
Joined: Wed Apr 02, 2008 12:04 am

Re: Everything seems to work, but alarms never end

Post by bb99 » Fri Jul 26, 2013 10:56 pm

2 main reasons why this happens: Linked monitors, and zone setup one or more pixels outside of picture boundaries. For the linked monitors I recommend deleting all but one and check to see if problem persists. If not recreate other monitors one at a time being careful not to link them. For the zone issue delete all zones for a monitor and recreate them staying well inside frame boundaries.

rzeune
Posts: 11
Joined: Thu Jul 25, 2013 11:11 am
Location: Columbus, Ohio

Re: Everything seems to work, but alarms never end

Post by rzeune » Sat Jul 27, 2013 2:54 pm

@bb99: there must be a third reason; I have no linked monitors, and my single zone is well within the frame boundaries - about 100 pixels from the nearest edge. Even so, I will delete the existing zone and put a new one in the middle of the frame and see if the symptoms change.

Thanks,
Ray

mycam
Posts: 2
Joined: Fri Jul 26, 2013 9:11 pm

Re: Everything seems to work, but alarms never end

Post by mycam » Sat Jul 27, 2013 6:32 pm

I deleted the (only) monitor and recreated it...now it works fine...

Although there was no linked monitor configured, I remember it once appeared (with same name) in the list (probably a transient state when I was playing with some parameters) and I might have selected it at that time. So maybe the config got screwed somehow.

All good for me for now...next step: email notifications when alarm is fired...

rzeune
Posts: 11
Joined: Thu Jul 25, 2013 11:11 am
Location: Columbus, Ohio

Re: Everything seems to work, but alarms never end

Post by rzeune » Mon Jul 29, 2013 1:43 pm

I first deleted and re-created the zone and there was no change. Then I deleted the monitor then re-created it and set the zone up as before. It seems to be working now - thanks for the tip!

mgc8
Posts: 8
Joined: Sat Dec 20, 2008 1:32 am

Re: Everything seems to work, but alarms never end

Post by mgc8 » Mon Jul 29, 2013 7:15 pm

Hi, I also took the advice above and re-created my setup; now I only have:
- one monitor (no links)
- one zone (as before), covering the field of view completely (0-799 horiz / 0-599 vert)

I set the zone preset to "Fast, high sensitivity"; have yet to try other presets, but I figured this should be a nice starting point.

The results have been mixed, but definitely a progress -- I no longer have "infinite" events; instead, I now get three types of events:
  • Short (sometimes very short, 1-2 seconds) events with little movement -- something I would expect from changes in light or a moving curtain, etc; this is just fine and expected.
  • Normal -- a few seconds to a minute of movement as I pass in front of the camera; again, just fine and expected behaviour.
  • JUMBO events (unfortunately, this still happens) -- sometimes, not at all clear what triggers it, but I get a single event lasting for thousands upon thousands of seconds, with no visible movement for most of that time; I just had to delete one that had 87000 seconds (that's more than a day), filled-up 33GiB and basically recorded a static image for most of that time (with tiny movements every few hours). I have another one lasting about 22000 seconds with similar characteristics.
I left the camera running for a few days in order to get these results. It is interesting to note that the "JUMBO" events do end after a while, but they sure take their time... It's also strange that they are preceded and followed by regular, short events so it's not a persistent failure.

Another hint might be that about 10% of all events (not necessarily the bugged ones) have a little "(r)" after the name. Looking in the docs (http://www.zoneminder.com/wiki/index.php/Change_History), it seems to mean that
If an analysis daemon terminates abnormally or the host computer crashes then events can be left in a state whereby they effectively have zero length and are useless. A change to zmaudit.pl was made such that any ‘open’ events such as this which have not been updated for at least five minutes are closed and updated to reflect their actual content so that they may be viewed or saved. Events recovered in this way are named with a ‘(r)’ mark to help identify them.
Does anyone have any ideas about what may be wrong here? I saved some of these events so I can provide more details about anything if needed...

Thanks,
Mihnea

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