Can't save hour-long video captures
  • I think this started when I moved from MacOS 10.6.8 to 10.9.2 but I'm not entirely sure.
    I want to save a 60-minute continuous capture every hour..... but I end up with a few that are 60 minutes and the rest are random lengths, usually short. Was working fine for many months previously.
    I've been through the settings many times and don't see what could be causing this randomness-- any clues appreciated.
    I was on 2.2 and I just updated to 3x but back to teh same behavior.
    Also, is there a way to get e-mail alerts when there are responses? <10% chance I'm going to remember yet another forum.<br />Thanks.
  • Hi Nealk - if you go to your profile page in the forum and then click on "My Preferences" there are various options there to be notified by email.

    As for the movies, the only way this could be happening is if the camera is going to Passive mode from time to time. If it's in Active mode all the time then it will record all the time. It may be going to Passive mode based on a schedule or due to some problem with the connection to the camera (e.g. if there is a networking error and the camera goes offline then this will stop the current recording - when the camera subsequently comes back online the recording will continue).

    Maybe it's best if you email us SecuritySpy's log file (which you will find in the SecuritySpy folder within your Documents folder) and we'll take a closer look.
  • While you can certainly set SS to start a new time lapse recording every hour, I like to set mine in smaller increments - say 15 minutes. This makes the resulting captured files quicker to load and play in RemotePatrol (or even via the web interface). I have found that very long/large files sometimes have problems in playback.

    This may not be related to the specific problem you're having, which will probably be identified through your log file as Ben suggests.

  • Thanks, Turbo.
    I had no trouble with hour-long files in 10.6.8/ SS 2.2, for well over a year (maybe 2) and I like the length.
    Seems like this should be an easy fix...
  • Should be, yes. I've done hour long files as well with no trouble. The shorter ones are easier for me to upload to dropbox (which I occasionally do as well). Anyways good luck.
  • It looks like what's happening is that something (presumably Security Spy) is hammering at the capture drive so aggressively (sounds like a machine gun for over a minute) that the drive basically goes offline (I get a system alert that the drive wasn't ejected properly, although the drive is still mounted and accessible once the hammering stops.)
    I tried disabling indexing i.e. removing that drive from Spotlight but apparently that wasn't it. I also set the capture rate back to 2 fps from 10 on both of the feeds being saved but that apparently wasn't it either. I haven't really seen a pattern to the hammering--- sometimes 11 after the hour, sometimes 22 after the hour....
    The drive is a 1 TB on external USB with close to 600 GB free that "appears to be OK" in the usual 2-3 minute Disk Utility repair. At this rate it won't be fine for long.....
  • Hi Nealk - it sounds to me that the drive is going bad. I've heard that hammering sound before, it's the hard drive heads (the magnetic sensors that read the bits from the platters) hitting the head stop (see click of death). I would advise backing up any important data from the drive as soon as possible, and replacing it.
  • Thanks, Ben.
    I don't think the drive is going bad. Definitely not "click of death"-- just kind of a loud drive that happens to be not too far from my head..... it's just something about the capture process that seems to be overwhelming it for whatever reason.
    My setup is a Mini booted from an external SSD via USB3. I've moved the capture destination to the Mini's internal (HDD) drive for now-- will see what that does. I don't normally keep a backup of the external I use for captures (I have redundant backups for everything else) so I guess the next step is to try zeroing and restoring it when I find something to put its contents on temporarily.
  • BTW the external in question is USB2... dunno if that could be a factor.
  • Your description of a "machine gun" sound, plus the fact that this lasts for over a minute, and that you get a message in the Finder that it wasn't ejected properly, certainly sounds to me like the drive is going bad!

    If you reset the capture destinations to the defaults in SecuritySpy (so that it captures to your internal drive) then you should see that these problems go away.

    SecuritySpy doesn't do anything special in terms of writing files that could cause such behaviour. One thing you could check though is that you have configured the compression settings so that the data rate being written is reasonably low, in order to relieve pressure on the drive. I would suggest you set SecuritySpy to use MPEG-4 compression, with a 50-60 quality setting, and a key frame rate of 15 (these are the default settings so if you haven't changed them don't worry).

    For any cameras that are sending MPEG-4 or H.264 video to SecuritySpy, make sure you have selected the "No recompression of video data" option in the Video Device Settings window for that camera.

    But if it were me I would change this drive :)

    Hope this helps!
  • I'm sorry if I wasn't clear-- I did change the capture destination. Will check the other settings, thanks.
  • Compression settings are still on defaults, thanks.

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