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Security Cameras

  • 1.  Security Cameras

    Posted 11-12-2018 08:09
    We are getting quotes for new security cameras.  Is there a document somewhere that gives you what questions should be asked when looking for new security camera systems?  I don't want to miss anything!  Thank you.

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    Stacie Lippi
    Technology Coordinator
    Vantage Career Center
    Van Wert OH
    (419) 623-9657
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  • 2.  RE: Security Cameras

    Posted 30 days ago
    Stacie:

    ​Hopefully you and others in the CoSN community will find this info helpful.  Our district is categorized as rural with just over 16,000 students.  We're located about 30 miles outside Salt Lake City.  We have invested in Axis IP cameras and ExacVision servers and found both to be reliable and cost effective.  We have configured our ExacVision servers to be large enough to meet storage needs, yet robust enough to handle the IP video traffic created by numerous cameras.  We have utilized PTZ cameras in only a few areas where school resource officers have requested, but prefer wide dynamic fixed lens IP cameras in order to clearly see in lower light conditions.  We've found Axis cameras and the ExacVision software to have an impressive zoom ratio and simple scroll/search features that makes examining video footage less cumbersome than other solutions we've tried in the past.  The cost of servers with 4TB of storage generally runs between $8,000-$10,000. Axis cameras run anywhere from a few hundred dollars for entry level models to $1,600 for wide dynamic fixed IP cameras.  PTZ cameras based on design run more than their standard fixed lens IP counterparts.  When constructing new elementary schools that service approximately 850 students, we install between 8-10 cameras and 1 ExacVision server per building.  In our secondary schools which service upwards of 2,000 students we generally install 4 ExacVision servers and between 40 to 80 cameras. We run all IP video surveillance on its own VLAN, effectively separating video from data traffic on our network.  Each building has between 2 and 10 data closets that are all interconnected with 10GB multimode fiber. Our switching infrastructure is the 1GB-10GB rated HP/Aruba ProCurve architecture, so video traffic is handled well regardless of the camera location.  Our district policy requires us to retain 30 days of video footage. I have one field technician that is assigned to support/install video surveillance. Contracting out is more expensive (yet convenient) than in-house installations, Installing systems ourselves helps us to know how to better support day to day operations of the system.  Best wishes on moving forward with your video surveillance projects.

    Regards,




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    Jim N. Langston, M.A., CETL
    Director of Information Technology
    Tooele County School District
    92 Lodestone Way Tooele, UT 84074
    Office: 435-833-1900 ext. 1148
    Fax: 435-833-1912
    Email: jlangston@tooeleschools.org
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  • 3.  RE: Security Cameras

    Posted 30 days ago
    Ask them to size it based on what you need in terms of retention. Like, do you want 30 days of history? More? They'll want to know that.

    One other thought: we have School Resource Officers and we included them in the design, and we made it possible for them to view cameras from their cars in an emergency. We have a formal policy with the police department on it's usage and it's all logged so we feel comfortable with this set up.



    Kieran

    Kieran O'Connor, CETL
    Executive Director of Planning, Development and Technology
    East Syracuse Minoa Central Schools

    315-434-3008 or internal x2661





  • 4.  RE: Security Cameras

    Posted 30 days ago

    We just upgrade all of our cameras this past summer.  What a big difference it has made.

    I will forward the specs to the group when I receive them from our Grounds Director.

     

    Glenn Wehe

    Technology Coordinator

    Evergreen School District #50

    Kalispell, Montana 59901

    406.751.1111 district offices

    406.751.1129 direct

    406.752.2307 fax

    Email: gwehe@evergreensd50.com

    http://www.evergreensd50.com

     

    No trees were harmed in sending this message. 

    However, a rather large number of electrons were somewhat inconvenienced.

     

    This e-mail and any attachment may contain information which is private and confidential and is intended for the addressee only. If you are not an addressee, you are not authorized to read, copy, or use this e-mail or any attachment. If you have received this e-mail in error, please destroy it and notify the sender by return e-mail.

     






  • 5.  RE: Security Cameras

    Posted 29 days ago
    I don't have a document per se, but here are a few thoughts.

    Make sure that it has a degree of fault tolerance or "high availability" (a.k.a. HA.)  You don't want a something like a routine Windows update causing a blackout for 20-30 minutes.  We have four rack mounted servers running our system.  Three are active and one is on stand-by in case any of the others should fail.  This prevents any outage unless two of them are down.  This makes upgrades easier and outage-free, which means they happen more often and with far fewer side-effects.

    When setting up a camera, you often will have to choose between details vs. area.  For example, do you pick up the entire parking lot or just the license plate?  If you're putting this out to bid, think about what you want to achieve and write your RFP in that context instead of stating where the cameras should go.  That gives the vendors a chance to come up with solutions that you might not have considered.

    If you're looking at getting license plates, add cameras aimed at specific "choke points" in traffic, such as the entrances.  This will improve your chances of getting the amount of detail you need.  If an incident occurs at the door, you can use the general parking lot view to track the vehicle to the exit and then use the targeted camera to get the details.

    Lastly, talk to your vendor about power requirements.  If possible, require them to speak to your network technicians before anything is plugged into the switches or the power outlets within the networking cabinet.  I've seen vendors insert power injectors into the network cabinets during the deployment process without first speaking to the networking team.  This is poor planning and/or poor communication on their part and it can negatively impact your longer term plans for network switches and wifi access points.  This could increase your long term costs.

    Hope that helps.

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    Jaime Kikpole
    Director of Technology and Innovations
    Cairo-Durham CSD
    Cairo NY
    (518) 622-8543 (59500)
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  • 6.  RE: Security Cameras

    Posted 29 days ago

    Good note on making sure IT is involved. Our first system was totally done by Buildings and Grounds. The installers showed up one day and no one knew they were coming, there was no rack space, etc.

    This recent install involved IT so it was well planned. We even had the camera vendor do a closet by closet diagram and list of how mnay ports would be needed per closet.


    Kieran

    Kieran O'Connor, CETL
    Executive Director of Planning, Development and Technology
    East Syracuse Minoa Central Schools

    315-434-3008 or internal x2661







  • 7.  RE: Security Cameras

    Posted 2 days ago
    Hi Stacie,

    We are in the process of upgrading cameras and door access in Manor.  Lot of good suggestions on this thread.  Don't forget to ask about warranty on both the camera as well as the installation (unless you all are putting them up yourselves).

    Good luck!!

    Alfredo

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    Alfredo Loredo Chief Technology Officer
    Chief Technology Officer
    Manor Independent School District
    Manor TX
    5122784975
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