Email when a camera fails

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jamescollings
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Email when a camera fails

Post by jamescollings » Thu Nov 23, 2006 9:17 am

I am slowly building my Zoneminder setup, and currently have a single camera running. (When someone answers my request about 4 port cards I'll have 3).

Since this is a residential installation, I am not going to be checking the event logs EVERY day (it isn't really that exciting to watch me and my family going to and from the cars, or watching the postman each morning :-) )

My concern is that someone could cut the small amount of exposed camera cables one day, and then return a couple of weeks later knowing that they weren't being recorded.

Is there some way of generating an alert (by email for example) to tell me that a camera has gone from "working" to "no signal"?

Thanks

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zoneminder
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Post by zoneminder » Thu Nov 23, 2006 10:49 am

If you have analog cameras attached then loss of signal is usually flagged by the screen going a uniform colour, usually a bluish one, though sometimes green. Check Options->ZM_SIGNAL_CHECK_COLOUR to see what the default is.

ZM can detect this kind of image and will create a 'Signal' event. You can then create a filter for this kind of event and generate an email as a result.
Phil

jlnavio
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Post by jlnavio » Thu Nov 23, 2006 3:41 pm

Hello, I asked tha same question and I don't understand any things.

I have some questions:

Is this option only for analog cameras?

ZM_SIGNAL_CHECK_POINTS option's help says:

"For locally attached video cameras ZoneMinder can check for signal loss by looking at a number of random points on each captured image. If all of these points are set to the same fixed colour then the camera is assumed to have lost signal. When this happens any open events are closed and a short one frame signal loss event is generated, as is another when the signal returns. This option defines how many points on each image to check. Note that this is a maximum, any points found to not have the check colour will abort any further checks so in most cases on a couple of points will actually be checked. Network and file based cameras are never checked."

Does it mean network cameras' power off isn't detected???

My installation of ZoneMinder has this value for ZM_SIGNAL_CHECK_COLOUR = 0100BE, but It doesn't detect camera's power off.

Help me, please.

Thanks

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cordel
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Post by cordel » Thu Nov 23, 2006 8:01 pm

There are things like logwatch that come in most distros that would probably better suit your needs and is designed for what you are asking. This would also take care of system error msgs that zm has no clue about.

Regards,
Corey

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zoneminder
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Post by zoneminder » Fri Nov 24, 2006 12:23 am

Yes, the signal events are really just designed for analog cameras. Network cameras can have connection failure or image recovery errors for many reasons, and often drop in and out.
Phil

Flash_
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Post by Flash_ » Fri Nov 24, 2006 7:09 am

IP Cameras can be tested for like any other net service - ping 'em.

Nagios is the big standard for doing that - it will sms, email, whatever when a failure is down. It is complicated and hard to set up however, and there are numerous other applications that might be easier.

It is possible that an ip camera could crash and still respond to pings but not provide a stream, but in over a year of using it to monitor axis and gadspot cams, that hasn't happened yet.

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zoneminder
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Post by zoneminder » Fri Nov 24, 2006 10:47 am

I agree, I use Nagios and once you get started it's pretty easy to get it to watch stuff on your network and detect and determine whether something is unreachable (ie off or disconnected) and/or just not responding to http requests for instance. Then it will mail you when stuff goes down or up. It would be nice to add this kind of stuff into ZM but currently it is not there.
Phil

bkortleven
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Post by bkortleven » Fri Dec 22, 2006 2:47 pm

You can use nagios to check on the availability of both the host (pings etc) and the service (ftp, http, ...) of the network camera's and other things.

I use it to monitor my network connectivity, servers and their most important services like http, dns, ftp, ssh... I even monitor my switches and make them 'parent' for the machines attached to them. In that way, power loss in the switch makes the alarms for hosts connected to them not to go off... Sending me a single sms: 'switch 1 down'...

google for nagios, you'll find plenty of examples and guidance.
It's tricky to set up, but once set up, you'll never want to be without it anymore...

Cheers, and Merry X-mas and a Happy 2007

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