What Is a ‘Flapping Camera’?
Flapping camera [noun]: a camera with connectivity issues, causing it to lose connection to the server multiple times within a given period.
We’re going over the specifics of flapping cameras, why you should care, and how you can be proactive about them with the Boring Toolbox.
What is a flapping camera and why should you care?
VMS pros are no stranger to false and unhelpful notifications about the status of our cameras, servers and a number of other things.
At Boring, we dreamt of a day when our customers only got alerts that actually mean something:
- When your cameras stopped providing video
- When your recording servers went offline
- When maintenance mode kicks in
We brought that dream to life with the introduction of notification thresholds. These thresholds give Boring Toolbox user’s control in defining the parameters around what warrants an email notification and what does not.
ie. only notify me if a camera is down for at least 5 minutes
The problem? Some cameras are sneaky and may experience multiple down events within that threshold period, meaning they will not trigger an alert and may fly under the radar.
We call these pesky cameras, “flapping cameras.”
Flapping can be caused by a number of different factors including limited amount of POE available from the switch or faulty wiring both of which could cause a boot loop. With unstable connectivity, flapping cameras aren’t providing consistent video to recording servers, and can easily miss important video. But since a booting camera could take <60 seconds these events, while important, will not be caught by more conservative thresholds.
So, we built a solution.
A New Solution for Identifying Potential Flapping Cameras Within Your VMS
For example: "Show me all cameras that have had #X of down events, that lasted a minimum of #X seconds within the last #X of hours."
Our new flapping camera signal gives you insight into potential problems in your system, allowing you to be even more proactive about the health of your VMS.
By identifying flapping cameras and using the Boring Web Dashboard to stay on top of them, you can keep your Milestone VMS system in tip-top shape and avoid future headaches.
Stay on the lookout for the release of the Web Dashboard with even cooler solutions you never knew you needed.