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More Genetec learnings

February 18, 2014

Now that our two main campuses are on line with their security cameras, we have a burst of interest and problem solving/learning to document. 

Genetec is the 3rd party software sitting on a dedicated server, a master server at one of the location where we have the cameras installed.  Both centers connect to it.  If it is down, both sites will be unaccessible.  Think Master – slave set up.

Think partitions, then groups, the individual accounts.

There are 3 partitions set up.  One for each of the two campuses, I will call them campus 1 and campus 2.  The 3rd campus does not yet have cameras on line.


User groups are set up in the Genetec software that belong to the partition(s). 

A common scenario is for people to only access cameras in their campus.  To that end, we make a user group, say “Campus 1 people”, add that group to the Campus 1 partition, and then add the individual account(s) to the Campus 1 group.  That same process applies to each of the other campuses.  User groups have other types of permissions defined for them.  All the users in the group share the same permissions.  The permissions are part of the group, not the individual.  If an individual needs slightly different permissions, say to view some type of report, they would get a new group and that group would be added to the partition and then the user would be added to the group.


Some groups, like the admin group, is added to all the partitions.  Users in this group can see cameras on each of the sites.  We noticed that when viewing cameras from both campuses at once in a busy grid, like this


That we could NOT tell which camera was from which Campus.  We prepended the Campus name to each camera name.


Heavy client or Web client

There are two clients available for the Genetec software.  The heavy client is a more robust program with additional features that ONLY a FEW people should need, at least that is my position.  Most of our users, customers, will use the web client.  Why not?  Give them that initially and let them use it.  It has the basic functionality of viewing the cameras and some other common functionality.  The Heavy client must be installed on the persons computer, requires certain upgrades and other software, it about 400 MB of install and took about 30 minutes to complete.  We currently have it installed on 4 computers in our organization.  All 4 are in the main campus.  This is what I call the minimalist approach.  Use only what you need and keep the model as SIMPLE as possible.  Build in complexity when you need it, not up front.  Do not front load complexity because you think they MAY need something down the road.  YAGNI !


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