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June 2019 Release : Dashboards and Details

We have been working on this new release for some time now and the team is very excited to be able to release our first iteration of Boring Dashboards for Milestone as well as details for hardware and devices.  Let’s get into it!

Dashboards

Boring Dashboard overview with storage health

 

This is not meant to be a full SNMP monitoring package, there are plenty of those to choose from, the Boring dashboard is meant to be a simple to use, pane of information that bubbles up system statistics that will actually mean something to a Milestone XProtect administrator.  To come up with the charts and tiles we reflected on our history of installing and maintaining Milestone systems and came up with what we believe are going to be the most useful pieces of information but we would love your feedback!

Management Server Status

Most of the dashboard revolves around the recording servers but here we are wanted a simple view of the CPU and memory usage of the management server.

Milestone Xprotect management server status tile

Boring Dashboard Charts

The dashboard is broken up into two main sections, charts and tiles.  The charts are on the upper half of the window and tiles below.  The charts are filterable graphs which provide a high level overview of the entire surveillance system. Additional details can be gained by hovering the mouse over the bars in the chart.

Default Storage Usage by Recording Server

This chart will show used/free space on OS and LIVE video database drives only.

Milestone XProtect Default Storage Chart

  • Filter by Recording server and Disk
  • Blue = Used space
  • Grey = Free space

Archive Storage Usage by Recording Server

This chart will show used/free space of drives designated for video archives, including NAS/SAN drives

  • Filter by Recording server and Disk
  • Blue = Used space
  • Grey = Free space

Hardware Status by Recording Server

This chart will show the number of hardware devices that are enabled/disabled on each recording server.  This is great for planning and load-balancing.

Milestone XProtect Recording Server Hardware Status

  • Filter by Recording server
  • Red = Disabled Hardware
  • Green – Enabled Hardware

Camera Video Status

This chart will show the number of cameras that are providing an image to Milestone and those that have not provided an image for at least 90 seconds.  These cameras can still be online and pinging but are for some reason Milestone can not pull video from the camera and is therefore not recording.

Milestone XProtect Camera Video Status Tile

  • Filter by Recording server
  • Green = Providing video
  • Red = Not providing video

Camera Brands by Recording Server

This chart shows the quantity of each camera by manufacturer and model per recording server.  This chart is great for systems that are under transition from one camera brand to another or one technology to another.  Imagine a large system transitioning from encoders to IP cameras.  This chart will help you quickly see where you are in the transition per recording server and how to plan.

Number of each make and model device per Milestone XProtect Recording Server

  • Filter by Recording server and Camera Brand

Boring Dashboard Tiles

Dashboard tiles are more detailed views of the system and provide more actionable data.

Camera Storage Tile

This is a top 10 to 50 cameras using the most storage. This is used to quickly identify defective cameras, cameras with unexpected constant motion (read: spiders and other insects) and those that might need to have motion adjusted.

Milestone XProtect individual Camera Storage

  • The list can be extended by selecting the number of cameras, up to 50, to display in list
  • Camera names are links to the camera in the hardware panel so that you can receive additional context or link to the camera directly
  • The recording server must be online for this chart to provide data

Storage Health Tile

This tile provides an at-a-glance view of the recording servers and their storage health.

Milestone XProtect Recording Server Storage Health

  • The list will only populate results for servers that have at least one disk below the threshold identified by the “threshold” drop down (default < 25% Free).
  • If all server storage is healthy then you will see a green bar that states “All recording servers have sufficient disk space”
  • When servers have drives below the threshold you will see them identified with all disks enumerated.
    • Green = Free space greater than 50%
    • Orange = Free space less than 50% but greater than the threshold
    • Red = Free space less than the threshold

Live Monitoring Tile

This tile provides greater detail on the video and recording server availability. We monitor the four items below:

Milestone XProtect Live Camera Video Stream Monitoring

  • Recorders Started
    • The number indicates the recording servers that are online and reporting to Milestone
  • Cameras Providing Video
    • The number indicates the ENABLED cameras that are providing video and are functioning as expected
  • Recorders Stopped
    • The number indicates the recording servers that are offline and not reporting to Milestone.
    • Details link will pop out a modal providing additional context as to which recording servers are not responding. This list can be downloaded into Excel and saved for further investigation.
  • Cameras Not Providing Video
    • The number indicates the ENABLED cameras that have not providing video for at least 90 seconds and are not functioning as expected
    • Details link will pop out a modal providing additional context as to which cameras have not provided video to Milestone. This list can be downloaded into Excel and saved for further investigation.
    • Note that the cameras may still be reachable by web interface but this value strictly identifies that the device is not providing video to Milestone.

Recording Servers Overview Tile

Provides a quick reference on the number of hardware, devices and IO devices are enabled on the system as a whole or per recording server.

Milestone XProtect recording server hardware and device status overview

  • Filter by Recording Server

Hardware Details

Hardware details provides greater context for recording servers, hardware and devices on the Milestone VMS. Additional context will show when the item is highlighted via a grey bar. This selection is independent of the check-boxes found next recording servers, hardware and devices.

Recording Server Context

Boring Details for Recording Server

  • Hostname
  • IP Address
    • This is a hot-link which launches Microsoft Remote Desktop directly to the recording server
  • Enabled/Disabled statistics for hardware, devices and inputs & outputs for the recording server
  • Storage Details
    • Shows details of all the disks and attached storage on the recording sever including NAS/SAN

Hardware Context

Boring Details - Hardware information and video

  • Hardware name in Milestone
  • IP address
    • This is a hot-link directly to the camera hardware and will launch your default web-browser in Windows
  • Camera credentials
    • These are the credentials from Milestone and not directly from the camera
    • The password is not readable but is copy-able so that it may be used without going to another document to retrieve it.
  • MAC Address
  • Enabled/Disabled statistics for devices and inputs & outputs for the selected hardware
  • Live Video
    • Enabled cameras will show live video
    • Disabled cameras will show “Camera Disabled”

Device Context

boring details - milestone xprotect device details

  • Device name in Milestone
  • Storage
    • This the amount of storage used by the individual camera device
  • IP address
    • This is a hot-link directly to the camera hardware and will launch your default web-browser in Windows
  • Camera credentials
    • These are the credentials from Milestone and not directly from the camera
    • The password is not readable but is copyable so that it may be used without going to another document to retrieve it.
  • Live Video
    • Enabled cameras will show live video
    • Disabled cameras will show “Camera Disabled”

Password Manager

Set current passwords to be hidden by default with a switch to show them if required.

Passwords hidden by default

Reporting

Extended reports to include camera and recording server storage.

Boring Toolbox reporting on storage

  • Camera report
    • Added a column (col J) for “Used Storage” which represents the amount of storage per individual camera
  • Recording server report
    • Added a new tab in the report called “Recorders Storage”
    • Report outlines the recording servers by name, IP address and identified all the used/free storage space on each machine

General Improvements

Some general improvements to the product.

Boring right click context

  • Right click context menu
    • You can now use right click on hardware and devices to perform actions.
    • Including enabling and disabling device/hardware, copying information and more
    • Right click is implemented on Device Groups, Hardware and Password manager

 

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