Reviewing large numbers of alarms

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akg1508
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Joined: Sun Aug 02, 2015 9:06 am

Reviewing large numbers of alarms

Post by akg1508 » Fri Feb 12, 2016 8:52 pm

TL;DR: Are there any recommendations for how to review a large number of
alarms over an extended time period, e.g. 1 day?

My current configuration has the cameras configured as Mocord.
While I'm planning to change the zone configuration to reduce the number
of generated alarms in future, for now I want to leave it as is.

An old security system I used had a feature that allowed all alarm
frames in a given time period to be viewed in a single sequence, e.g. a
video made up of only the alarm frames (the timestamp could then be used
to find the appropriate frames).

I haven't been able to find this capability, or any other
recommendation.

I can write a script that will generate such a video, but would
obviously prefer to have a working solution. Bonus points if the alarms
can be filtered by zone.

Any suggestions?

Thanks!
Alistair

bbunge
Posts: 2704
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Location: Pennsylvania

Re: Reviewing large numbers of alarms

Post by bbunge » Sat Feb 13, 2016 1:42 pm

Check out the Show Timeline function. You may have to do it for each camera but the graph will indicate motion hits even in mocord. Click on events in the Day column then Show Timeline.

LBDG
Posts: 10
Joined: Mon Jun 23, 2014 10:17 am

Re: Reviewing large numbers of alarms

Post by LBDG » Mon Feb 15, 2016 2:12 am

I wrote a php script that does exactly what you want. See github and search for zm-movie. I have been using this script for over 1 year now. It makes mp4 based on alarm frames or all frames using dropdowns to setup the movie. It also has the capability to add buffers after and before an alarm (if you use mocord)

https://github.com/lbdc/zm-movie

See instructions on git hub. (php-cli package is required)

Let me know if you need help setting it up.

Note: It doesn't follow any programming best practices (I am not a programmer) but works nevertheless.

akg1508
Posts: 22
Joined: Sun Aug 02, 2015 9:06 am

Re: Reviewing large numbers of alarms

Post by akg1508 » Wed Feb 17, 2016 6:24 pm

bbunge wrote:Check out the Show Timeline function. You may have to do it for each camera but the graph will indicate motion hits even in mocord. Click on events in the Day column then Show Timeline.
Thanks for your suggestion. I think this would be great if there are only a small number of alarms, but for reviewing large numbers of alarms the fine mouse control becomes a bit too much effort (for me, anyway).

akg1508
Posts: 22
Joined: Sun Aug 02, 2015 9:06 am

Re: Reviewing large numbers of alarms

Post by akg1508 » Wed Feb 17, 2016 6:38 pm

LBDG wrote:I wrote a php script that does exactly what you want. See github and search for zm-movie. I have been using this script for over 1 year now. It makes mp4 based on alarm frames or all frames using dropdowns to setup the movie. It also has the capability to add buffers after and before an alarm (if you use mocord)

https://github.com/lbdc/zm-movie
Thanks, I expect I'll use this once I get our permanent installation working.

At the moment I have a temporary ZM installation which is running on a very old single core, 512MB ram laptop, which can just handle the 1 camera it has connected (this is watching our house while it is being renovated, I'll get the real server once we move in). As soon as I do anything significant on the laptop it causes frame corruption which triggers false alarms. Before you replied I got a python script working which I can run on my laptop and access the ZM machine using ssh and sshfs over the local network, moving most of the load from the ZM machine to my laptop.

LBDG
Posts: 10
Joined: Mon Jun 23, 2014 10:17 am

Re: Reviewing large numbers of alarms

Post by LBDG » Wed Feb 17, 2016 10:01 pm

I have 5 installations for which I have to monitor 3 daily for problems (and soon 4).

In order to be efficient, I also wrote an alternate zm-movie script to accepts command line parameters that I use in a cron job. Every morning this script creates videos from cameras for me to quickly review. One of the parameters is to set the maximum video duration (I found 2 minutes was perfect for me). The script will accelerate 24h worth of alarms in a maximum of 2 minutes. That way you can scan alarm events quite quickly.

What I found is that while scanning an accelerated video you will see the alarms and if it warrants further investigation you can then fall back to standard methods.

I'll upload this script to github also if you want.

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knight-of-ni
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Location: Shiloh, IL

Re: Reviewing large numbers of alarms

Post by knight-of-ni » Wed Feb 17, 2016 11:08 pm

akg1508 wrote: Thanks for your suggestion. I think this would be great if there are only a small number of alarms, but for reviewing large numbers of alarms the fine mouse control becomes a bit too much effort (for me, anyway).
The timeline is intended exactly for this purpose.
If you find the mouse requirements to be too fine, then that means you need to zoom in.

We also just merged the following feature, which should appear in the next version:
https://github.com/ZoneMinder/ZoneMinde ... -183980315

The author says it will let you scrub through the video at your own pace. Since this feature is new, you can expect it to need some fine tuning.
Visit my blog for ZoneMinder related projects using the Raspberry Pi, Orange Pi, Odroid, and the ESP8266
All of these can be found at https://zoneminder.blogspot.com/

LBDG
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Joined: Mon Jun 23, 2014 10:17 am

Re: Reviewing large numbers of alarms

Post by LBDG » Thu Feb 18, 2016 12:22 am

What would be a very useful option would be for the view event window to have a "alarm event" replay option (right now there are single event, all events, gapless events) for those of us who use mocord.
event.jpg
event.jpg (7.6 KiB) Viewed 3683 times
This would be complimentary to the timeline function where you can scan only alarms in mocord.

Would this be complicated to add?

The timeline is very useful but does not function from a phone or tablet.

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knight-of-ni
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Re: Reviewing large numbers of alarms

Post by knight-of-ni » Thu Feb 18, 2016 1:19 am

I couldn't say how hard that would be to add a feature like that off the top of my head.
I can say that it is unlikely the core development team would do the work to add something like that because we are working on other features which most would agree should be top priority. That isn't to say we won't merge something that someone else does. We have accepted pull requests from quite a few strangers who have stopped by to add a feature or two.

Note that, if you are using a phone or tablet, the recommended way to view ZoneMinder is through an app, like zmNinja. I'm pretty sure the author of zmNinja, asker, does support some kind of feature that allows one to browse through many events.
Visit my blog for ZoneMinder related projects using the Raspberry Pi, Orange Pi, Odroid, and the ESP8266
All of these can be found at https://zoneminder.blogspot.com/

akg1508
Posts: 22
Joined: Sun Aug 02, 2015 9:06 am

Re: Reviewing large numbers of alarms

Post by akg1508 » Fri Feb 19, 2016 8:46 am

knnniggett wrote:
akg1508 wrote: Thanks for your suggestion. I think this would be great if there are only a small number of alarms, but for reviewing large numbers of alarms the fine mouse control becomes a bit too much effort (for me, anyway).
The timeline is intended exactly for this purpose.
If you find the mouse requirements to be too fine, then that means you need to zoom in.
Thanks for pointing this out - I hadn't explored the timeline as much as I should have. However it does mean lots of clicking around - this is really a personal decision, but I still find navigating in mpv more convenient than clicking around in the timeline.

Once I get ZM configured for long term use, the number of events should reduce dramatically, and at that point I expect the timeline will be what I use.
knnniggett wrote: We also just merged the following feature, which should appear in the next version:
https://github.com/ZoneMinder/ZoneMinde ... -183980315

The author says it will let you scrub through the video at your own pace. Since this feature is new, you can expect it to need some fine tuning.
I'm looking forward to trying this out!

Thanks again,
Alistair

akg1508
Posts: 22
Joined: Sun Aug 02, 2015 9:06 am

Re: Reviewing large numbers of alarms

Post by akg1508 » Sat Feb 20, 2016 1:13 pm

LBDG wrote:I have 5 installations for which I have to monitor 3 daily for problems (and soon 4).

In order to be efficient, I also wrote an alternate zm-movie script to accepts command line parameters that I use in a cron job. Every morning this script creates videos from cameras for me to quickly review. One of the parameters is to set the maximum video duration (I found 2 minutes was perfect for me). The script will accelerate 24h worth of alarms in a maximum of 2 minutes. That way you can scan alarm events quite quickly.

What I found is that while scanning an accelerated video you will see the alarms and if it warrants further investigation you can then fall back to standard methods.

I'll upload this script to github also if you want.
Thanks for the offer. I'm doing something quite similar, but instead of compressing the video further, I use mpv to speed up and slow down the replay, and jump back a short time, which allows me to see more details about the alarm if required (which is useful in my case as I'm not always connected to the ZM server when reviewing the alarms).

Thanks again,
Alistair

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